Hi friends. How are you today? I wanted to tell you that DUO Inspirations had a group on social media. It is called DUO Inspirations’ Education Chat. And, you can find it with the hashtag #DUOEdChat.
It will be a group where educators and parents can get together and speak about teaching and learning topics, such as lesson plans, teaching tips, resources, activities, struggles, successes, curricula, as well as educational products and services.
I want it to be a place that allows parents and teachers and all those who value education to come together and learn from one another. I want it to be a place where people can get answers and give advice.
Knowledge is important and people need a place where they can go with questions and answers. It seems like teachers and parents are overwhelmed with education right now. The pandemic doesn’t make teaching and learning any easier. Some teachers are finding it difficult to plan for both online learning and in class learning. Some parents question whether they should send their children to school and if they would be any good at homeschooling.
I remember when I was teaching, there were times that I would think, “I wish there was an activity that would help me teach this topic to my students.” I knew what I wanted, but didn’t have time to create it. Teachers don’t always have the time to do everything they want to do.
Parents may not know of resources that are out there to help them or their children, whether it is in support of homeschooling or public education. They may also want teaching and learning activities that would help their children. Or, maybe their children are struggling in learning one skill in one subject or many skills.
DUO Inspirations’ Education Chat would be a place to share these struggles. We don’t want to forget the successes though. After all, it is everyone’s goal to have successes. Sometimes, we get so excited that we just want to share our successes with everyone and it is a bonus when our successes can help others reach their successes.
Consider yourself invited. I am looking forward to you joining the conversation in DUO Inspirations’ Education Chat. I value you and what you have to share about education.
***Note: DUO Inspirations' Education Chat is a group ran by the DUO Inspirations Facebook page. (If you haven't "liked" the DUO Inspirations Facebook page, please feel free to do so.) #DUOEdChat is a hashtag used in Twitter and other social media conversations.
Now, it is your turn.
I would like to hear your thoughts. What would you like to see either here on the Education Blog by DUO Inspirations or in the DUO Inspirations' Education Chat? What are your education ideas, struggles, or successes?
Also, if you are finding value in my posts, please consider sharing them with friends and family, as well as signing up to receive them in your inbox. Thank you.
How are you? Earlier this month, I wrote about fact families, an important beginning math skill. This week, I thought I would write about identifying nouns, an important beginning language arts skill.
Once we start learning about letters, letter sounds, and simple words, often one of the next skills is to identify nouns. Nouns, as we know, are people, places, and things. It might seem simple to us, because we know it. Yet, for students just starting out, it may not be quite so easy. It may take practice and a variety of activities to get the idea of what constitutes a noun and what doesn’t.
I have used a variety of ways to teach and reinforce noun identification. The first way that I will tell you about to teach, reinforce, and practice the skill of identifying nouns is to make it fun. You can make up simple silly stories leaving out the nouns and having students come up with nouns to complete the stories. (Yes, there was a product that was out when I was growing up that was very much like this.)
Another way to teach, reinforce, and practice the skill of identifying nouns is to have word sorts. For a simple sort, have just noun and verb sorts. Don’t make the words too difficult at first. Have simple nouns like, “man, boy, cow, book, car” or simple verbs like “jump, run, clap, read, eat”.
Believe it or not, some words that may seem like simple nouns or verbs may be a little confusing. For example, when I was writing the examples above, I originally had toy as a simple noun. However, if a student has ever been told, “Don’t toy with me” he or she may wonder why it is a verb in this case and a noun when it refers to something with which to play. I also had hide down for a simple verb, but a student who has heard of animal hide, may not understand why it is a noun in that case and a verb when playing and trying not to be found.
You may decide to use the words that may be a little tricky, however, I do feel that it is worth considering before you teach them. This may be especially true when teaching the skill to those whose first language is not English.
A third way to teach, reinforce, and practice nouns is to have students do activities in which they color in words a certain color based on the type of speech. I actually created an activity where nouns are colored in blue. It seems to be one that people enjoy.
Now, it is your turn.
How do you teach, reinforce, and practice the identification of nouns? Please, comment below. I look forward to your ideas.
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P.S.- Did you know that DUO Inspirations creates educational materials? If you are interested in having me create an activity for you, please contact me. Also, some are given free, especially if you are on the email list. Thank you.
How are you today? I hope you are well. Have you ever sat down to write something and couldn’t think of anything to write? LOL! Yes, me too! So, I thought that I might create writing prompts once a month or something to share. That way, if you are having trouble coming up with a writing topic, you can use the writing prompt.
I find writing prompts helpful when I am not sure what to write. I don’t always use the writing prompt given or my free writing from it, yet, it usually gets my thoughts going again. It gets me past the writer’s block. I hope it helps you as well.
So, drum roll please. Today’s writing prompt is this:
“Pretend that your phone or television came alive and had a conversation with you. What would it say? How would you respond?”
Our phones and our televisions seem to play a big roll in our lives these days. They will surely have a story to tell. Maybe that it is that we depend on them too much. Maybe it is that we need to clean them more often. Maybe it is that they enjoy sharing adventures with us. I don’t know. If your phone or television were to talk with you, what would it say?
So, what do you think of the writing prompt? Did you try it? How did your writing turn out? Would you like more writing prompts? I can’t wait to hear from you.
Now, it is your turn.
I would like to hear from you. Leave me a comment below. If you find value with the Education Blog by DUO Inspirations, please tell your family and friends. Also, please consider signing up to receive the Education Blog in your inbox and to receive other educational content.
How are you today? I think of math as a cool puzzle. In most puzzles, there are only a right way and a wrong way to put the puzzle together. Yet, with math, the puzzle pieces can go together in a variety of ways and still be right. Teaching fact families once students know how to count and start learning to add is a great way to show them that math can be a cool puzzle.
There are fact families for addition and subtraction as well as multiplication and division. However, right now, I am only addressing the fact families for addition and subtraction. I believe the skill should be taught in addition and subtraction. Yet, I think it should be reinforced in multiplication and division.
Fact families are four closely related math statements. To me, it shows that numbers can be manipulated to make them easier to solve or explain. This may not make much difference in the early years of simple addition and subtraction. However, in later years during more difficult problems and algebraic equations, this skill will come in handy.
Let’s look at a sample fact family: 2+3=5, 3+2=5, 5-2=3, 5-3=2
These four equations use the same three numbers. There are two addition equations and two subtraction equations. The first two equations shows that it doesn’t matter which order you add two numbers the answer is still the same. This is also known as the commutative property.
Fact families help you to know more than you think you know. For example, if you know that 2+3=5, you also know that 3+2=5. If you know that 2+3=5, you also know that you can “undo it” by saying that 5-3=2. And, if you know that 5-3=2, you can also switch the order of the numbers you “take away” to make 5-2=3.
Attitude can make a difference as to whether students find this information to be “more that they HAVE to remember” or “more that they GET to know.”
Sometimes adding silly parts to a lesson make it more enjoyable to students. Maybe start off by asking, if I put two purple and pink polka-dotted pigs and Johnny puts three purple and pink polka-dotted pigs in a pile and we add them up, how many purple and pink polka-dotted pigs do we have all together? (Yes, five. That is right.) If we take them back and then Johnny puts his three purple and pink polka-dotted pigs in the pile first and then I put my purple and pink polka-dotted pigs in the pile second, then how much will we have all together? (Yes, five. That is right.) So, does it matter who puts their purple and pink polka-dotted pigs in the pile first? Does the number of purple and pink polka-dotted pigs that we have all together change in any way by which order we put them down? (No, that is right.) It is the same with adding numbers. It doesn’t matter if we add 2+3 or 3+2 because the answer is still 5. Then, you can go through the same process, showing that it doesn’t matter in which order you pick up your purple and pink polka-dotted pigs, because the same three numbers are being used. You are just “undoing” what you did when you put them down. You can then relate the picking up of the purple and pink polka-dotted pigs to subtraction.
Make it a game. Have students come up with the objects that are being put in the pile and picked up again. Ask them to choose silly objects, fun objects, dull objects, sharp objects, etc. Relate them all back to numbers. Have the students to choose the numbers, count them, and add them too. Ask the students to write and/or draw the math equations that make up their fact families.
The idea is to not only teach the important skill of fact families, but to also show students that math doesn’t have to be difficult and boring. The idea is to show students math can be helpful and exciting as well. It also gives you as a teacher to role model to students that the right attitude matters.
Now, it is your turn.
Do you teach fact families? How do you introduce fact families? I would be interested in your thoughts. Please, leave a comment.
Also, if you find value in the Education Blog by DUO Inspirations, please consider signing up below. Thank you.
How are you today? Do you have planned work to give the students who finish early or to give the class to do when you are not in the class? There will always be times when you will not be there to guide the students or will be busy with other students. So, it is good to have enrichment or review materials for students to do in every topic or skill you teach.
Sometimes, it takes time to gather enrichment and review materials for every topic and skill you teach. However, it is easier when you have someone who will create these materials for you. DUO Inspirations is such a resource. If you need an enrichment activity or review materials in any particular topic or skill, please contact me.
In the meantime, please, let me tell you about one of the activities that I enjoy. It is something that almost any grade can do. The activity is taking a word with quite a few letters in it or a short phrase and asking the students to make smaller words they can make out of the letters in that word or phrase. It is better if you can use a vocabulary word or topic phrase that goes with the subject you teach.
Creating words out of letters of a larger word or small phrase is an important skill. It helps students to notice the letters in a word. This helps in spelling as well as reading.
Here is an example I did out of the letters in the word education. There are other words. However, I thought one hundred was a nice round number.
If you notice, most of the words are smaller words. That reinforces the fact that it can be done with success with most grade levels. Also, as you can see many of the words have prefixes or suffixes. So, this is makes a wonderful activity to review root words, prefixes, and suffixes.
I usually tell students that they cannot use slang, bad words, or proper nouns. However, you can use whatever guidelines you wish. I hope you and your students enjoy this activity.
Another good idea for doing an activity like this is asking students their strategy to finding words. One of my strategies is to choose endings and look for any other words that have the same ending, such as ten and den or can and tan.
Now, it is your turn.
Have you ever done this activity? What are your guidelines? Do you and your students enjoy it?
Also, if you find value in my posts, please feel free to share with your friends and also sign up to receive the Education Blog by DUO Inspirations in your inbox. Thank you.
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.