Excellent Teaching

Tiering and Compacting: You CAN do it!

Tiering and compacting as differentiation strategies are underused because they’re intimidating. They needn’t be! This is an introduction to them that I think may help teachers understand them and (most importantly) be willing to try them! The two mistakes teachers make that prevents them from effective tiering and compacting are:

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PowerPoint Timer Slides

PowerPoint Countdown Timer Slides are slidedecks that automatically count down, advancing without clicking. They’re great for teachers who want students to be able to track progress and manage their time. While there are PowerPoint timers available, this is different in that there is an editable text box that allows teachers

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Free Math Resources

The best math resources are those that are also free! If you’ve got a mathemaniac, have I got some great free resources for you. Many mathematicians agree that probability and statistics are under-taught in schools, especially in light of their use in everyday life. The Web site for the Actuarial

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3 Reasons I Loathe Accelerated Reader

Confession: I loathe Accelerated Reader. Perhaps the title of this post was a spoiler. My friend Jen Marten wrote this terrific article about what’s wrong with Accelerated Reader. I would like to add a few points to her wonderful list. Much has been written about the problems with Accelerated Reader,

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Shape-Up Differentiation for Tasks or Chores

This free printable can help you infuse a little choice into school or home tasks. Simply download the free PowerPoint printable, and edit it to meet your needs. First, I did not invent this strategy. I read it somewhere. I wish I could remember where so I could credit it.

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Wheel of Choice Free Download

This simple yet cool one-slide PowerPoint lets you “spin” a wheel, and it even includes a satisfying “spinny” sound. Uses, you ask? choose teams choose assignments select number of seconds or minutes or times something will be done anything requiring an element of randomness take the place of dice in

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What Sled Dogs Can Teach Us About Working in Teams

Let’s be honest: working in groups is not typically a strength for gifted learners. That doesn’t mean that we just shrug our shoulders and say, “Oh, well I (or my child) just prefer to work alone.” That’s simply not practical in today’s cooperative learning and work environments. So how can we

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Why School’s Not Fair to Gifted Kids

A gifted fifth grader received this advice on his report card: “You could work on ways to exhibit patience for others who don’t work at your same fast pace. Also be aware that you don’t overstep boundaries by helping people when they are trying to discover something on their own.”

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MemeCreator.org Tutorial

Memes are so popular and useful, which is a great combo if you know how to create them. In this tutorial, I’ll share the easy, free way to create memes using MemeCreator.org, a free online program. The site looks like this when you get there, and I’ll show you what to

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How to Find Puzzle Resources in Five Minutes

January 29th is National Puzzle Day! When I was the Youth & Education Ambassador at Mensa, I gathered these puzzle resources for bright kiddos. First, here are ten riddles to get yourself in the mood for lots of puzzle fun. Our favorite place to find family jigsaw puzzles is Cobble

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Who Else Wants Great Free Images?

If you have ever anguished over finding just the right image for your presentation or your blog or your handout or for your students to use or for your social media conversations, anguish no more. I’m sharing my go-to sites for finding copyright- and royalty-free images that look great. I’ll

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The Geek Olympics: Resources for Teachers

When watching the Olympics, are you more interested in the physics behind the jumps than the sequins on the ice skaters’ costumes? If so, have we got some ideas and resources for you. Over on our @MensaGT Twitter account, we got a request for Olympic-themed activities for bright kids, so

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