Tag Archives: middle school

Summer PD for Teachers in National Parks

“I [couldn’t] believe I was getting paid for this,” says Eric Riemer, fourth- and fifth-grade science teacher at Park City Elementary School in Park City, Kentucky, of his experience this past summer as a National Park Service (NPS) Teacher Ranger Teacher (TRT). 

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Ecosystems: Recycle and Cycle

Do you have any advice for creating bottle ecosystems with my seventh grade class? I would like them to do two-tier systems with terrestrial and aquatic organisms. —S., Missouri Students can learn a lot when they create these micro-habitats in plastic bottles with plants and invertebrates. The bottles can be stacked to form interdependent aquatic […]

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Redesigning the Science Fair

Schools and teachers are transforming traditional science fairs into events incorporating science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) or STEAM (STEM plus Arts).

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Tech Talk

I was wondering how other teachers implement technology in the classroom? I think that simulations have the ability to encourage student inquiry, but often their presence seems to distract students from the learning. What are your thoughts? —K., Wisconsin There are many different kinds of technology in addition to laptops and tablets. Smartphone apps, sensors, […]

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Be My Guest!

I’ve read about inviting guests into the classrooms for a day. Would you recommend that for a new teacher or would it be best for students to see me as the expert initially? Also, how can we get experts into the classroom? —A., North Carolina     I loved bringing guests into my classrooms! I […]

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Out with the old, in with the new?

I am about to graduate and become a new teacher. Is it a good idea to use lesson plans that are handed to me and maybe need to be tweaked or is it better to write brand new lesson plans each year? —G., Florida Since I never had an entire class comprehend 100% of what […]

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Inclusive Labs

Do you have some suggestions for how to modify a science experiment for students with physical disabilities that prevent them from doing the activities? – A., Arkansas There are many ways you can modify the experience for students with disabilities. Specific labs may have special modifications, but here are some general ideas: In general, you should […]

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Building Electric Cars Enhances STEM Learning

Students around the country are learning science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) by designing, building, and racing electric cars.

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Get Moving!

I am currently a student teacher in an incredible third grade classroom. I was thinking about doing a lesson on Force and Motion. Are there any great strategies and tips for this subject? – J., Virginia   The Forces and Motion topic lends itself to fun STEM activities like balloon cars, wheeled cars, and so […]

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The long and short of field trips.

What do you think of the value of extended field trips? What should be considered? – M., Florida I love field trips and students often say that they are the highlights of school! Whether it is extended or just a single day, going outside the school gives students a chance to observe or experience things […]

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