Time To Smell The Roses

Mike Beetham

As the year now shifts to the final months of academia, it is important to take the time and reflect on the growth of yourself as a teacher, the academic gains that your students have made and the endless best efforts that took place in your learning community. We often start to stress or feel […]

Care for Materials

When reading Mike’s blog entry “I Lost my Pencil” I was struck with how I have struggled with the same dilemma this year. Coming from a Kindergarten class I was comfortable being a “Materials Manager” for the classroom. All the materials were shared and they were intentionally presented in an inviting way to encourage use, […]

Shared Learning – Not Competition

Mike Beetham

In a learning community the focus becomes a shared learning, teamwork and helping each member to reach their potential. This collaborative classroom design creates a community of risk takers, where talents blossom and are shared for the good of all over time. Now, lets shift the scene to a school staff. It is made up […]

When Does A Classroom Agreement, Become A Classroom Agreement?

Mike Beetham

I have been using the concept of the group collectively coming up with the behaviour and work standards they would like to live with for their time together as a team for over a decade. But on one fateful day in the winter of 2013 I was able to be a part of an experience […]

Reaching All Learners – Flexibility in Core French Class

Out of all the challenges you are confronted with as a teacher, it seems to me that one of the most difficult of all is making sure that you can meet the needs of all of your students (simultaneously!). Everything else seems to hinge on this; if your students can function/are sufficiently challenged, they are […]

Being a Mentor OT

In my first year of occasional teaching, I was as lost as Bambi in a forest fire.  Thank goodness for Sarah, my occasional teacher mentor who came to the rescue. 

Preparing for the First Day

This year I will be moving classrooms and divisions. Teaching a grade 5/6 class at the other end of school from the Kindergarten section will be a big change for me and also for my students. I am sure they will be looking for glimpses of the “Kindergarten Teacher” that they saw in the halls […]

Matchmakers: Creative Ways of Forming Groups

I’m always looking for different ways of forming groups either for teams in games or for class projects/presentations. I like to make sure that not everyone is always working together with their friends. In a book called Energizers and Other Great Cooperative Activities for All Ages (Quest Books, 1991) I hit the jackpot. I know […]

Connecting as a Class

After hopefully bonding together over the course of the year, it’s always nice to get the students to formally acknowledge/remininsce about how they bonded as a class. One is a new one I’m going to try called Friendship Connections (source:Energize). Materials: Large ball of yarn and paperclip for each student Directions: Sit together in a […]

Making a Difference

Recently, our school went to an overnight outdoor education centre. Parent/student/teacher relationships are developed and also expanded during these types of trips. I had three students with special circumstances. All were brought to my attention before we left for the trip. I had one student who had separation anxiety, another had social issues and a […]

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