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Welcome to The Pirate D.L. Blog! We hope you find a lot of great resources for digital learning that you can use in your classroom.

Monday, April 27, 2015

Google Classroom adding CO-TEACHERS and DRAFT Mode

How to Add Co-Teachers:

Open the classroom you wish to add a teacher to and go to the "About" page, then click on the invite teacher box and enter their email address. 

Draft Assignments:

Now when you start typing in a new assignment it is automatically saved and a "Draft" section appears at the top of your classroom stream. Only teachers can see the "Draft" section until you post your assignment to the class.

These updates should really increase the usefulness of Google Classroom. For more detailed information about the new features, click here to view the Google Blog post.

Friday, April 10, 2015

Literacy Research

The Most Commonly Used Terms on Common Core Standardized Tests


If you cannot see the graphic above, click here to view.

     According to education research, student success on achievement tests are based in large part on students' vocabulary.  This is not new information to teachers.  But what can we do about it? Which words are most crucial?  Read below to find ways to support both students and teachers in preparation for standardized assessments.

Top 10 Terms Students Need to Be Successful on Standardized Tests (Article & Resource)


Scholastic recently released an article listing the top 10 terms students should know for success on standardized tests.  A quick list of these terms is below.  For more information regarding each, view the full article here.

Interpret
Analyze
Persuade
Compare
Contrast
Summarize
Demonstrate
Describe
Explain
Infer


As end-of-year tests loom closer, how much are students exposed to these words on a daily basis?  Even more importantly, how often does teacher questioning include these terms?  Classroom assessments?  Do not leave it up to chance.  Instead, make time for mini-lessons to focus on crucial vocabulary terms.  Consider using Marzano's Six Step Process for Teaching Academic Vocabulary.

55 High Frequency Words of Common Core (Article & Resources)


According to Marilee Sprenger, education author and consultant, there are 55 words that occur with highest frequency in Common Core Standards.  It should be no surprise that most of the top 10 terms listed above are also included in Ms. Sprenger's list.  A full list of these words are listed below and accessible here.  

Common Core High Frequency Verbs
Analyze
Articulate
Cite
Compare
Comprehend
Contrast
Delineate
Demonstrate
Describe
Develop
Determine
Distinguish
Draw
Evaluate
Explain
Identify
Infer
Integrate
Interpret
Locate
Organize
Paraphrase
Refer
Retell
Suggest
Support
Synthesize
Trace

Common Core High Frequency Nouns
Alliteration
Analogy
Argument
Central Idea
Conclusions
Connections
Connotative Language
Details
Evidence
Figurative Language
Illustrations
Interaction
Metaphor
Mood
Point of View
Rhetoric
Simile
Stanza
Structures
Theme
Tone

Again, how much are students exposed to these words on a daily basis?  How often do they interact with and use these words?  Use these 11 Tips from Marilee Sprenger on how to easily teach vocabulary with limited time.  Or use these ideas for Ten Minute Vocabulary Lessons.

Special thanks to JCS Data team!