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Back to School

Back to School Lessons for the Secondary Level Classroom - Previous Revision

The ReadWriteThink website has been providing quality lesson plans, interactive student materials, web resources, and ELA standards to classroom teachers since October of 2002. Highlighted here are examples of some secondary level lesson plans with a focus on back to school and creating classroom community.

Calendar
Not your everyday calendar, here you can find important events in literary history, authors' birthdays, and a variety of holidays, all with related activities and resources that make them more relevant to students. View by day, by week, or by month.

Get ready to go back to school!
Students share details about their lives with one another using the interactive Graphic Map and share their memories in small groups or with the whole class.

Text Messages: Recommendations for Adolescent Readers, Podcast for Grades 6-12
Text Messages is a monthly podcast providing families, educators, out-of-school practitioners, and tutors reading recommendations they can pass along to teen readers. Each episode will feature in-depth recommendations of titles that will engage and excite teen readers.

Writing about Literature
Drawing on years of real classroom experience, this follow-up to NCTE’s immensely popular Writing about Literature (1984) addresses the challenge many teachers face: How can we use writing assignments to deepen students’ understanding of literature, while at the same time improve their writing, critical thinking, and analytical skills?

Fifty Alternatives to the Book Report
Offers 50 diverse suggestions intended to offer students new ways to think about a piece of literature, new directions to explore, and ways to respond with greater depth to the books they read.

The First Thing Every Writer Has to Know
A writer in motion stays in motion. How do you get upper elementary and middle school writers to actually put something on the page, take a risk, produce a string of sentences? How do I get them started and then how do I help them quell the inner critic that tells them their words aren't worthy, that they can't write, and that I'll never get this. They can, and you can help them. Come join a lively discussion on how to get our writers moving.

Creating Class Rules: A Beginning to Creating Community
On the first days of school, students are led through a process for establishing year-long goals and needs for the classroom. These become the classroom guidelines which are used as a foundation for continuous community-building in the classroom.

Grammar Alive! A Teacher's Guide
NCTE's Assembly for the Teaching of English Grammar provides this much-needed resource for K-college teachers who wonder what to do about grammar-how to teach it, how to apply it, how to learn what they themselves were never taught.

What is "College Level" Writing?
Just what defines “college-level” writing? This collection, edited by Patrick Sullivan and Howard Tinberg, seeks to engage this essential question with care, patience, and pragmatism. It includes contributions by many well-known composition scholars as well as by high school teachers, students, and administrators.

What is "College Level" Writing 2?
This sequel to What Is “College-Level” Writing? (2006) highlights the practical and the pragmatic aspects of teaching writing.  By design, the essays in this collection focus on things all English and writing teachers concern themselves with on a daily basis—assignments, readings, and real student writing.

How to Encourage Higher Order Thinking
A main goal of educators today is to teach students the skills they need to be critical thinkers.  Instead of simply memorizing facts and ideas, children need to engage in higher levels of thinking to reach their fullest potential.  Practicing Higher Order Thinking (HOT) skills outside of school will give kids and teens the tools that they need to understand, infer, connect, categorize, synthesize, evaluate, and apply the information they know to find solutions to new and existing problems.

How to Start a Writer's Notebook
Children often struggle with the idea of getting started on their writing, whether it be in or out of school, and need an structured way to "get going."  Writer’s notebooks allow children and teens to take in the world around them and document their daily lives and provides an easy, informal way to start thinking about new topics and ideas.  These notebooks are a great place to store favorite quotes, random facts, dreams, and ideas for the future. 

Preparing Students for Success with Reading in the Content AreasOur Classroom
In this strategy guide, you’ll learn how to determine the level and type of support you need to provide students based on careful preparation as a content area expert.

 

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