MSM 356:  AMLE, Poetry, Blended Sixth Graders.


Jokes You Can Use:


Last night I had a bad dream. I dreamt I was a muffler.

  • I woke up exhausted.


Before they invented drawing boards, what did they go back to?


What do you call a part time band leader?

  • A semi-conductor


There was this limo driver who was in business for 25 years without a single customer…

  • All that time and nothing to chauffeur it.


Middle School Science Minute  

by Dave Bydlowski (k12science or

Best STEM Books — Part 2


I was recently reading the February, 2017 issue of “Science Scope,” a magazine written for middle school science teachers, published by the National Science Teachers Association.  


In this issue, I read an article on the best STEM Books for 2017, for students in grades K-12, as recommended by the National Science Teachers Association.  In this second of a two part series, we look at 5 of the recommended books that are appropriate for middle school students.  Titles include:

Steve Jobs: Insanely Great

Super Gear: Nanotechnology and Sports Team Up

Trailblazers: 33 Women in Science Who Changed the World

Welcome to Mars

Women of Stone and Steel


From the Twitterverse:  


These novels teach learning from loss & overcoming adversity, great for #middleschool  via @Edutopia #growthmindset

MiddleWeb‏ @middleweb

NEW: Poetry Writing Made Fun–10 Cool Teaching Ideas. @CherylTeaches #elachat @ncte #poetrymonth #nwp #educoach @amle …


#Quote from today’s AMLE Newsletter. Get the newsletter w/ free Associate Membership

Kelly Malloy‏ @kellys3ps

10 Wordless Videos That Teach Problem Solving – Could also be used as writing prompts or to practice re-telling


Removing Imaginary Boundaries Around Content – Teacher and students benefit from an integrated curriculum  #mschat

Kenneth Ward‏ @kennethdward

Why I Read to My Middle School Students #oklaed #mschat  


Tan Huynh‏ @TanELLclassroom

3 types of #scaffolding for all SS. #ellchat #chatesl #ellchat_bkclub #ell #educhat #teachchat #WIDA #k12 #ESOL

#mschat every Thursday at 8:00 pm Eastern Standard Time.  And as Troy says, “The Twitter never stops!”  




Blended Learning


  1. Blended Beats Virtual
  2. Choose and Train the Right Teachers
  3. Student Engagement is Essential
  4. Parents Need to Be Educated, Too
  5. You Need Support Over Time
  6. Decide What Scaling Means to You


Homework Alternatives




College-Ready Sixth Graders

Mike Petrilli, Big Cheese at the Fordham Institute, a reliably reformy thinky tank, is concerned. While he allows that some students and families are uber-stressing about the whole college thing, the rest of us should be in a greater state of panic:


We need the majority of parents and kids to be more stressed out. We need to shake them out of their complacency and tell them: You and your kids are heading toward a coming-of-age catastrophe, but you can avoid it if you act now! [emphasis his]


Interactive Word Wall

An Interactive word wall can transform spaces in your classroom. They provide a way for students to engage with content in an authentic matter and promote a sense of curiosity among your students.


Random Thoughts . . .


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