Teaching the Whole Child

During my teaching career I have developed an approach that focuses on the whole child and emphasizes academics, character development, work habits, social skills, and health & wellness. On this board I share my favorite things that bring these topics to life.
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This design was inspired by the "12th Man" flag associated with the NFL's Seattle Seahawks. The crowd at Qwest Field is so loud and has such a presence during the games that it's almost as if the team has an additional player on the field. In our class the design has become an important symbol. It represents those concepts and ideas that are so important and have such a presence in our room, it's almost as if we have an additional student.

This design was inspired by the "12th Man" flag associated with the NFL's Seattle Seahawks. The crowd at Qwest Field is so loud and has such a presence during the games that it's almost as if the team has an additional player on the field. In our class the design has become an important symbol. It represents those concepts and ideas that are so important and have such a presence in our room, it's almost as if we have an additional student.

Here's a video I posted that describes a fun way teachers can personalize every child's learning experience and guarantee positive attention.

This video describes how teachers can give all their students their own "thing." By doing so, we can personalize everyone’s classroom experience and guarante.

This is 1 of the 29 "visual reminder cards" I made to help children improve their reading skills. After conferring with kids, we can give them a card to use as a quick, easy reference during independent reading. Each card contains the strategy name, a definition or description, and an image. If you'd like a PDF with the whole set of reminder cards, e-mail me at sreifman at verizon.net. Each page of the PDF holds 4 index-card-size copies that you can cut for your students.

This is 1 of the 29 "visual reminder cards" I made to help children improve their reading skills. After conferring with kids, we can give them a card to use as a quick, easy reference during independent reading. Each card contains the strategy name, a definition or description, and an image. If you'd like a PDF with the whole set of reminder cards, e-mail me at sreifman at verizon.net. Each page of the PDF holds 4 index-card-size copies that you can cut for your students.

This short video features "The Drive for 5," a concept I created to help children and parents understand what I consider to be the 5 most important traits the kids need to develop and display in order to have the best school year possible. I share the visuals with my students at the beginning of the school year and with their parents at Back to School Night. These ideas become a significant reference point that we use in class throughout the year.

This short video features "The Drive for a concept I created to help children and parents understand what I consider to be the 5 most important traits th.

Red Herrings (A Short Mystery Writing Lesson for Kids)

Red Herrings (A Short Mystery Writing Lesson for Kids)

Alibis (A Short Mystery Writing Lesson for Kids)

Alibis (A Short Mystery Writing Lesson for Kids)

THIS WEEKEND ONLY: 99¢ Ebook Offer  To celebrate the release of my new ebook for elementary teachers, I am making "10 Steps to Empowering Classroom Management" available on amazon for just 99¢.

THIS WEEKEND ONLY: 99¢ Ebook Offer To celebrate the release of my new ebook for elementary teachers, I am making "10 Steps to Empowering Classroom Management" available on amazon for just 99¢.

This is an example of a personalized motivational visual that teachers can create for individual students to give them a boost. I made this visual for a student who admired running back Marshawn Lynch, who then played for the Seattle Seahawks. (For privacy purposes, the actual student is not shown in the visual. Instead, I found an image on Google and gave the boy a fictitious name.)

This is an example of a personalized motivational visual that teachers can create for individual students to give them a boost. I made this visual for a student who admired running back Marshawn Lynch, who then played for the Seattle Seahawks. (For privacy purposes, the actual student is not shown in the visual. Instead, I found an image on Google and gave the boy a fictitious name.)

This is a self-evaluation sheet one student created to help him reach the goals he set at his November parent conference. He used a series of "faces" to assess himself each day for each goal.

This is a self-evaluation sheet one student created to help him reach the goals he set at his November parent conference. He used a series of "faces" to assess himself each day for each goal.

This is a self-evaluation sheet one student created to help him reach the goals he set at his November parent conference. He used a 1-4 scale to assess himself each day for each goal.

This is a self-evaluation sheet one student created to help him reach the goals he set at his November parent conference. He used a scale to assess himself each day for each goal.

This is a self-evaluation sheet one student created to help him reach the goals he set at his November parent conference. He gave himself a 1-4 score a few times per day for each goal.

This is a self-evaluation sheet one student created to help him reach the goals he set at his November parent conference. He gave himself a score a few times per day for each goal.

This brief video is the first in a series of writing lessons that teachers and parents can use with middle and upper grade children (ages 8-12). Each video features an important writing skill or concept. In my experience as an elementary educator, I have found that many young writers create stories that contain mostly action or mostly dialogue. This video presents an engaging, user-friendly activity that focuses on helping kids include a balance of “ingredients” in their fiction stories.

This brief video is the first in a series of writing lessons that teachers and parents can use with middle and upper grade children (ages Each video f.

My students and I just completed our class mission statement, and I decided to try a different format this year. Rather than present our ideas as a series of paragraphs, I designed the document to look like the front wall of a classroom. The text was fit inside a whiteboard, two bulletin boards, a clock, a flag, and other "classroom-themed" shapes. As much as possible, the meaning of the text matched the object in which it was placed.

In this post I share the class mission statement my students and I created during the first week of the school year.

Introducing #TeachTheWholeChild Chat, a new free professional development opportunity for teachers in grades K-8.

Introducing Chat, a new free professional development opportunity for teachers in grades

This video introduces the "Circulate & Encourage" strategy,  a simple, non-threatening way to increase student participation in class discussions. This strategy is especially effective with those children who tend not to raise their hands due to shyness or a lack of confidence.

This video introduces the "Circulate & Encourage" strategy, a simple, non-threatening way to increase student participation in class discussions.

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