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Writing workshop is my jam! Teaching writing shouldn’t feel like a chore. In these articles, you will find helpful strategies for mini lessons, writing conferences, editing, grading, and so much more.

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6 Easy Gingerbread Activities for Upper Elementary Students

6 Easy Gingerbread Activities for Upper Elementary Students

The weeks before a holiday break can be the most fun - and the most stressful - for a teacher.  Your students are ansty and ready for a break. And honestly, so are you!  But you know you still have to keep some sort of order in your class until that last bell rings. ...

5 Tips For Using Whole Group Instruction Effectively

5 Tips For Using Whole Group Instruction Effectively

Last week, I discussed how small-group instruction isn’t as efficient as whole-group instruction. Both have a place in your teaching toolbox, but the idea that small-group instruction is always best has not been supported by research. There are many articles on best...

Why You Should Use Whole Group Instruction

Why You Should Use Whole Group Instruction

I remember when whole-group instruction became verboten in my district. We were told that no one would be considered highly effective if they didn’t use small-group instruction for the majority of the class. I know some teachers swear by small-group instruction, but I...

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Check Out These Writing Videos!

Creative Ways to Use Popcorn in the Classroom

Creative Ways to Use Popcorn in the Classroom

Before a long holiday, I always try to wrap up any major units of study so I can plan something fun the day or two before break. While many teachers may choose to show a movie, in all honesty, I've always found movies to be not that engaging for students - and they...

Why Middle Grades Teachers Need to Teach Phonics

Why Middle Grades Teachers Need to Teach Phonics

As an upper elementary and middle school teacher, I always saw phonics instruction as a primary grade responsibility. By the time students reached me, I believed students were ready to dive into reading comprehension. After all, don’t they say fourth grade is when...

Why You Should Ditch the 2-Hour Reading Block

Why You Should Ditch the 2-Hour Reading Block

As teachers, one of the first things we do is design activities to activate schema, or prior knowledge. We know students remember new information better when they connect it to what they already know.

How to Plan Lessons More Effectively

How to Plan Lessons More Effectively

Many times as teachers we end up trying to plan for a week at a time (maybe two if we are lucky), and rarely have time to consider any sort of long-range planning. If this situation sounds familiar, my advice would be to take time (sooner rather than later) and do a deep dive into your standards.

Differentiated Instruction With Mastery Grading

Differentiated Instruction With Mastery Grading

Teaching your students to effectively participate in this process makes determining the learning needs of your students easier. Once you know the learning needs of your students, you can differentiate instruction.

American History Interactive Notebooks

American History Interactive Notebooks

Research shows that writing notes by hand and interacting with information being learned increases comprehension and retention. My students’ scores supported those findings, and my love of interactive notebooks began.

How To De-Stress Lesson Planning

How To De-Stress Lesson Planning

One of the biggest shifts that helped me with my lesson planning was when I stopped planning individual lessons and started developing units.

Hello! I’m Amy Mezni!

  • I believe that students need to be the leaders of the classroom. Even third graders are old enough to be held accountable and to take responsibility for their learning.
  • I do not believe that kids were made to sit in seats. They need to get up and move around.
  • Differentiated instruction is a must. I use guided reading and guided math groups to meet the individual needs of my students.
  • Helping a student to discover their love for reading is a privilege that I never get tired of.
  • School should be fun! We party in my class!