Browsing Category : teacherspayteachers

Tips for Teaching Shakespeare Cover

Tips for Teaching Shakespeare

Teaching Shakespeare: Tips & Tricks   Teaching Shakespeare can be a tricky prospect, but here are some tips to help you and your students get the most out of your unit. Students have very different reactions to Shakespeare based on their experiences and expectations. I want to advocate for teaching Shakespeare through performance, and I’ll be talking more about that…

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Here are three tips for grading interactive notebooks quickly and easily, even in a high school ELA classroom. This blog post contains actionable steps you can take today, along with a freebie to focus your grading. (

Grading Interactive Notebooks

I love using Interactive Notebooks in high school and sharing this love with others. Still, the number one question that I get from teachers is how to manage grading Interactive Notebooks without letting it take over your life. I’m here today to tell you that it is possible, as long as you set yourself up for success. Here are some…

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Differentiating the Research Process for all learners is important, especially in ELA. Here are some ideas for creating engaging and accessible research opportunities. More at Blog post.

Differentiated Research Projects in ELA

If you love the idea of assigning differentiated research projects, but find the actual research process daunting, then this post is for you. Research projects can be a time of joy and exploration for your students, so here are my tips for making this something you can enjoy, too. These projects should be something open and accessible to all learners,…

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Effective rubrics are clear and well-designed, and can help increase feedback to students and decrease grading time. Check out this blog post to figure out which rubric style works for you.

Rubrics 101: Improve Communication and Efficiency

I’ve talked before about why I stopped writing on student papers, but today I want to talk about an important tool I used to be able to do that: rubrics. A rubric is a grid that expresses your expectations for an assignment using concrete, achievable descriptors. The biggest time-saving device you can have in your classroom is a good rubric.…

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How to download product updates for TeachersPayTeachers products. Video blog.

Download TpT Product Updates

How to Download TeachersPayTeachers Product Updates Do you have a resource that you purchased two or three years ago on TeachersPayTeachers? Are you wondering if there’s a product update that you could download? The teacher-author may have fixed some typos or even made major changes like adding several pages of activities! TeachersPayTeachers does not send out an email every time…

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Persuasive Techniques and Media Literacy

Persuasive Techniques & Critical Thinking I’ve taught persuasive techniques every year, but it feels more necessary than ever for our students to develop media literacy. Can they judge the worth (and truth) of the information presented to them? Can they identify how a speaker could be manipulating their emotions and instincts? I’ve teamed up with a group of teacher-authors from…

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Using puzzles and games in high school ELA is a great way to develop a growth mindset, challenge both sides of the brain, and encourage collaboration and critical thinking. Discover three ways to challenge your students at

Using Puzzles in High School ELA

Using puzzles and games in the high school classroom is a great way to build collaboration, critical thinking, and a growth mindset. Puzzles can be particularly powerful in the ELA classroom because they allow students to approach words logically, mathematically, and visually, creating cross-brain connections. Okay, so it’s true: I love puzzles! I’m excellent at some types (jigsaw puzzles) and…

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Using Interactive Notebooks to teach class novels can be rigorous and engaging, even for middle and high school. Here are some tips and tricks for setting up your novel units. Read more at

Teach a Class Novel with Interactive Notebooks

Do you love the idea of Interactive Notebooks but are unsure of how to use them to teach class novels? Stay tuned for my best tips and tricks for designing rigorous and engaging class novel units. I am a huge proponent of using Interactive Student Notebooks (ISNs, INBs, INs) in high school. I love them for the ease of structuring…

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Simplify your back to school routines with color coding. This classroom management strategy will help you and your students stay organized throughout the school year. Check out more tips and resources at

Color Coding Your Classroom

Back to School can be a stressful time, but with the right tips, resources, and mindset, we can all have an amazing start to the school year! A huge time-saving idea is color coding your classroom. A Back to School Classroom Management Tip: Color Coding Your Classroom If you’re like me, it can take a while to learn every student’s…

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I finally nailed teaching symbolism to my students! Using candy was both efficient and engaging, and they kept referencing this lesson for the rest of the year. This strong foundation really helped their literary analysis skills.

Teaching Symbolism with Candy

I have been reflecting on my favorite lessons from the school year, and one of the most fun and effective was teaching symbolism with Tootsie Roll Pops! Not only were the students enthusiastic about eating the candy (because aren’t they always?), they really grasped the concept of analyzing a symbol. We were nearing Halloween and deep in our Short Stories…

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Found Poetry for Fiction & Non-Fiction

In addition to studying poetry during National Poetry Month in April, I love integrating poetry throughout the school year. A favorite resource I use to engage my students in literature is Found Poetry! You can do this with any class novel or independent reading, and it’s a way for students to seek many “correct” answers. This is a fun, no-pressure approach…

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12 Days of Giving: Freebie!

Welcome to Day 9 of the Literary League’s 12 Days of Christmas Blog Hop! We know that the holiday season is busy for both teachers and students, and it never seems to slow down after that. To help you make it through the rest of the year, you need a stock pile of lessons that can be easily implemented at…

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The Literary League Kicks Off 12 Days of Giving for Secondary ELA Teachers

Literary Leaguers are in the holiday spirit and we’re hosting  12 Days of Giving!   We’re super excited to share some of our favorite freebies (both seasonal and all-year-round resources) with you and give you the chance to win a Teachers Pay Teachers gift certificate!  The 12 Days of Giving runs Tuesday, December 1st – Saturday, December 12th.   Here’s…

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Interactive Notebooks for High School

Are you looking for ways to use Interactive Notebooks for high school English? When I was first faced with this possibility, I was super excited!, but had no idea where to start. I wasn’t sure if these would be the right tool for my 9th graders. I decided to start off the year with my normal Short Stories Unit, and…

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Back-to-School Giveaway by The Literary League

  By the time I grab my books and I give myself a look I’m at the corner just in time to see the bus fly by. It’s alright’ cause I’m saved by The Literary League! That’s right, we are at it again! It’s one of the biggest back-to-school give-aways courtesy of some of your favorite ELA sellers.  We’re teachers too, so we know…

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TeachersPayTeachers: Back to School Sale!

Back to School Savings! Want to rack up some major savings on materials and lesson plans during this back-to-school season? The Literary League is coming to your rescue! Check out these amazing secondary ELA sellers to save up to 28% on your TeachersPayTeachers purchases. Danielle Knight (Study All Knight) — Darlene Anne- ELA Buffet — Mrs. Spangler in the Middle…

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TpT Seller Challenge Week 3: Make Your Masterpiece

I’m back for Week 3 of the TeachersPayTeachers Seller Challenge! This week? A new product! Woo-hoo! Well, the big news here, folks, is that I got a job teaching 9th grade English here in San Juan, Puerto Rico. I’m planning for next year, of course, and starting to consider how I’ll get to know my students quickly! It’s a small…

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tpt seller challenge #2: Dare to Dream

TpT Seller Challenge Week #2: Dare to Dream

For this week’s TpT Seller Challenge, we’ve been asked to dream big. Well, I have three major goals that my store on TeachersPayTeachers can enable, and they are to travel, to learn, and to share. 1. Travel I have always been very privileged to be able to travel a lot, and I want to continue this in my adult life…

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TpT Seller Challenge: Makeover Madness

I am so excited to participate in the TpT Seller Challenge hosted by Third in Hollywood, Teach Create Motivate, Sparkling in Second, and Poppy Zesty Teacherista! Do you want to participate? Check out this blog post for more information! This week’s challenge is to makeover an old product. I decided to revamp a best-selling product of mine, Integrating Sources with…

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Poetry and Common Core

Planning by the Pool: Poetry and Common Core Summer has arrived, but I’ve had poetry on the brain since April. Poetry was always one of my favorite units as a student (and poet!), and I still get so excited when April rolls around. I’ve been thinking about poetry and Common Core, though, and how to make student-friendly poetry exercises that…

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Why I Started Blogging

Why I Started Blogging   Oh, blogging! It’s true that I’ve had this blog for a very short time, but I’ve been journaling and blogging for years now. I’ve kept a *paper journal* for seventeen years and had a *LiveJournal* in high school and college, and then kept a public travel blog while I lived in Europe. It was a…

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Goals for the Summer

My Goals for the Summer This summer, I am focusing on three major goals: 1. Learn Spanish We recently (5 weeks ago!) moved from Philadelphia to San Juan, Puerto Rico (thank you, Coast Guard!) and have been “coasting” as far as Spanish goes. We currently live in the very touristy area of San Juan, and everyone can identify us as…

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8 Fresh Ways to Celebrate National Poetry Month

April is National Poetry Month! Spring has sprung and April has arrived! If you’re like me, April is a favorite month because we can put our best Spring energies into teaching poetry. Here are some new ideas that you can put into play in your classroom this April. Poem of the Day Give students short poems to respond to as…

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6 TpT Sellers I Admire

6 TeachersPayTeachers Sellers I Admire

This is my very first blog post, and so I want to start by looking outward. I’ve been selling (seriously) on TeachersPayTeachers for over a year now and I’m ready to push myself even further. I’ve been spending some time in reflection on who I am as a teacher, as a student, as a seller, as a buyer, and as…

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