Pedagogue Blog

20 Fun And Exciting Drama Games

Drama games are a fantastic way to break the ice, build confidence and develop vital performance skills. Here are 20 fun and exciting drama games that can be enjoyed by people of all ages.

1. Freeze: Participants perform a scene, and whenever the word “freeze” is called out, they must stop in place. Two new players jump in, assume the frozen positions and start a new scene.

2. Hot Seating: Participants sit opposite one another and engage in improvised character interviews or scenes based on specific themes or situations.

3. Zip Zap Zop: Players stand in a circle and pass an imaginary energy bolt around using the words “zip,” “zap,” and “zop” in sequence. Players are eliminated if they say the wrong word or hesitate too long.

4. Taxi: Participants create scenes as drivers or passengers inside an imaginary taxi cab, using their powers of improvisation to interact with various locations or other characters.

5. One Word Story: In a circle, each player says one word at a time to craft an original story out loud.

6. Park Bench: Two players sit on an imaginary park bench. A third player comes along to try to make one person leave their seat by making various offers or suggestions.

7. Party Quirks: The “Party Host” must guess the odd personality traits assigned to their guests as they’re introduced during their party.

8. World’s Worst: In a rapid-fire round, participants take turns demonstrating the world’s worst example of something – like a waiter, doctor, or teacher.

9. Machine: Participants create different components of an imaginary machine with their bodies while making noise or mimicking movement to contribute to the overall function of it.

10. Tableau : Groups pose in still images to convey a specific theme, subject, or idea without speaking.

11. Where Game : Players create mini-scenes by acting very clearly their surroundings – whether it’s a beach, an office, or a haunted house – and other players guess the location.

12. King of the Hill : Players must use their imagination and improvisation skills to invade territories on an imaginary hill until there’s only one person left.

13. Three-Headed Expert : Participants play three experts who can only answer questions one word at a time, creating funny answers and sparking creativity.

14. Mirrors: Partners face each other and attempt to mirror each other’s movements without talking about the choreography ahead of time.

15. Sound Circle : Players sit in a circle while creating different sounds using their bodies or voices, which they must then pass on to the person next to them.

16. Object Transformation : Participants must transform one prop into multiple things through improvisation while the others guess what it has become.

17. Monologue Chain : Players take turns performing a monologue based on the last sentence spoken by the previous participant.

18. Emotional Symphony : The group forms an emotional orchestra where each player represents an emotion demonstrated through vocal or physical actions, all conducted by someone in the middle

19. 10-Second Objects : In groups, participants have ten seconds to form various objects out of their bodies, including anything from cars to parks or famous landmarks.

20. Alphabet Game: Players must perform a scene with dialogue that goes through every letter of the alphabet, starting with ‘A’ and ending with ‘Z.’

These 20 drama games are sure to provide hours of fun and excitement for any aspiring actor or performer. Use them in workshops, rehearsals, or even just for fun with friends. The possibilities are endless!

Why I Decided to Become a Long-Term Mentor to One of My Students

As an educator, it has always been my passion to nurture, inspire, and empower the young minds I come into contact with every single day in the classroom. Each student is unique, possessing a diverse array of interests, abilities, and aspirations. However, one particular experience transformed me from a dedicated educator to a long-term mentor – and that was when I decided to invest in one of my students as a mentor and guide on their academic journey.

My decision was based on three key factors: the student’s personal growth potential, a shared passion for learning, and the belief that their success could ultimately benefit others.

1. Personal Growth Potential

As an educator, I am privileged to witness the growth and transformation of countless students. This particular student demonstrated immense potential when it came to personal development and overcoming obstacles. Their strong academic foundation, combined with a steadfast work ethic, fueled my desire to extend my support beyond the confines of the classroom.

I knew that by committing myself as a long-term mentor, I could provide insightful guidance and motivation tailored specifically to this student’s strengths and areas for improvement. Witnessing the transformation in their perseverance and self-confidence solidified that this was a worthwhile endeavor.

2. A Shared Passion for Learning

A thirst for knowledge wasn’t hard to spot in this exceptional learner. From engaging group discussions to their unwavering curiosity for new ideas and concepts, our shared love for learning became increasingly evident over time.

Recognizing how our close rapport enhanced their educational experience only added fuel to my conviction as a mentor. Investing time into someone who shares your passion can be greatly rewarding – not only do you have an opportunity to observe progress firsthand but also participate in mutual intellectual growth through invigorating conversations about various topics.

3. The Ripple Effect on Others

This student exhibited leadership qualities that made them stand out from their peers. By carefully guiding and supporting their growth, I knew I was not only investing in the promise of an individual student but also making an impact on the broader community.

Through my mentorship, this student became a role model for others in the classroom. This ripple effect on their surroundings demonstrated how nurturing an individual’s development could multiply into positive effects for the wider society.


My decision to become a long-term mentor stems from the deep-seated belief that, as educators, we have a unique opportunity to change lives in profound ways. Investing in one student’s growth had lasting implications for their future as well as those around them. As I continue to support my young protégé, I am constantly reminded of the transformative power of education – and how taking an active role in shaping someone’s journey can lead to unanticipated rewards.

Empowering Educators: Teachers Can Win Social Studies Curriculum Tools for Their Class


Education is a powerful force that shapes our world, and teachers play a crucial role in preparing the future generation for success. It is essential that educators have access to engaging and comprehensive curriculum tools, particularly in social studies education which helps students understand societal structures, government systems, and historical developments. In order to support passionate educators, numerous opportunities are available for teachers to win social studies curriculum tools for their class. This article explores these opportunities and provides guidance on how to secure these essential resources.

Competitions and Grants:

Several organizations host annual competitions or offer grants focused on providing social studies curriculum tools to exceptional educators. These awards often involve submitting lesson plans, creative teaching ideas, or demonstrating the impact of incorporating new resources into your classroom. Common benefits include cash prizes or the acquisition of free educational materials. Here are several options worth considering:

1. Organization of American Historians (OAH) Teacher Awards: Each year, OAH selects K-12 grade history teachers for outstanding commitment and creativity in teaching American history with their Tachau Teacher of the Year Award.

2. National Council for the Social Studies (NCSS) Awards: The NCSS offers different awards such as the Carter G. Woodson Award (K-6 grades) and the Exemplary Research in Social Studies Education award which honor achievements in promoting diversity education within social studies classrooms.

3. Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History: This organization provides various teacher awards and fellowships that recognize educators who demonstrate dedication to teaching American history, offering cash prizes and curricular materials as rewards.

Crowdfunding Platforms:

With the rise of online crowdfunding platforms, teachers can appeal directly to others for financial support in acquiring essential social studies curriculum tools. Popular platforms such as or GoFundMe allow educators to share their classroom needs with people who are passionate about investing in quality education. By creating a compelling campaign, detailing the necessity of specific social studies materials and their potential impact on student learning, you can secure the funds needed to enrich your classroom experience.

Programs and Partnerships:

Numerous educational institutions and organizations provide programs specifically designed to support teachers with limited access to curriculum resources. These partnerships often involve application processes and submission deadlines but successfully participating can lead to multiple benefits. For instance, Teaching Tolerance offers free classroom resources which encourage empathy and social justice among students. Additionally, National Geographic offers educator grants that support teachers in introducing innovative, student-driven projects which promote exploration, conservation, or storytelling.


With various opportunities available for teachers to win social studies curriculum tools for their class, it is essential for educators to be diligent and resourceful in seeking them. Participating in competitions or applying for grants might require additional time investment; however, this effort can lead to significantly improved classroom experiences for your students. Optimizing crowdfunding platforms or engaging in beneficial partnership programs may also yield results that foster lasting positive changes. By acquiring these essential social studies resources, you are not only enhancing your teaching methods but also empowering future generations with the knowledge and understanding needed for a more equitable and harmonious world.

Top 10 Books to Read Over Winter Break

Winter break is finally here, and it’s the perfect time to settle in and enjoy some quality reading. Whether you’re looking for an engaging mystery or a heartwarming romance, we’ve got you covered. Here’s our list of the top 10 books to read over winter break.

1. The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah

Set during World War II, The Nightingale is a riveting tale that explores the lives of two sisters in occupied France. Prepare to be transported through this beautifully written story that balances sadness, love, and the resilience of the human spirit.

2. The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides

This psychological thriller will keep you on your toes all winter long. Follow the journey of a psychotherapist who becomes obsessed with uncovering the truth behind his patient’s violent act.

3. Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

This classic coming-of-age story follows four sisters as they navigate life, love, and loss. It’s perfect for anyone seeking a heartwarming and inspiring read during the holiday season.

4. Before We Were Yours by Lisa Wingate

Based on true events, this novel explores the lives of stolen children sold to wealthy families in America during the early 20th century. A heart-wrenching tale of love, family, and sacrifice.

5. The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Evelyn Hugo is a reclusive Hollywood legend who decides to reveal her glamorous life story to a young journalist. This captivating story covers love, ambition, and secrets you won’t want to miss.

6. The Giver of Stars by Jojo Moyes

Travel back to Depression-era America with this thought-provoking story about five women who become traveling librarians in Kentucky. It’s a beautifully written tale about sisterhood and unexpected friendships.

7. Where The Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens

A coming-of-age story set in the marshlands of North Carolina, this novel is a testament to resilience and self-discovery. It’s both a heart-wrenching mystery and a tender love story.

8. The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

Enter the enchanting world of two talented magicians competing in a mysterious, nocturnal circus. This memorable tale will take you on an unforgettable journey that stretches the limits of imagination.

9. One Day in December by Josie Silver

This delightful holiday romance spans ten years as two strangers forge an undeniable bond after a chance meeting at a bus stop. It’s an exploration of love, friendship, and missed opportunities.

10. The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafón

Dive into the literary mystery set in post-war Barcelona as a young man uncovers a forgotten book that triggers his journey to uncover its author’s dark past. It’s a captivating tale that will mesmerize you until the very end.

No matter your taste in literature, this list has something for everyone to enjoy over winter break. So grab a cup of hot chocolate, cozy up under a warm blanket, and lose yourself in these remarkable stories.

9 Ways a School-Wide Arts Integration Program Inspires Everyone

A school-wide arts integration program is an innovative approach to education that connects core subjects with art forms. This method promotes creativity, curiosity, and cooperation among students and teachers alike. Here are nine ways a school-wide arts integration program can inspire everyone.

1. Enhance Learning Experiences

When the arts are integrated into other subjects, students gain deeper understanding and heightened interest in the material. For example, students learning about history can create a theatrical play to explore historical events or compose music to capture the emotions of a particular time period.

2. Boost Confidence and Self-Expression

As students experiment with different artistic mediums, they learn to express themselves in new ways. This creative process fosters confidence as they feel encouraged to take risks and push boundaries.

3. Strengthen Critical Thinking Skills

Arts integration encourages students to think critically and problem-solve through the creative process. When faced with challenges, students learn resilience while working towards innovative solutions.

4. Improve Social Skills

Collaboration is integral to the artistic process and encourages communication among peers. Students share ideas, discuss diverse perspectives, and learn from one another in a supportive learning environment.

5. Broaden Cultural Understanding

Through exposure to various art forms, students have the opportunity to explore different cultures and customs. This increased cultural awareness cultivates empathy and understanding within the classroom.

6. Foster Creativity

Enabling students to express their creativity can unlock their full potential, allowing them to think outside of the box. The creative process supports academic growth as well as social-emotional growth.

7. Enhance Teacher Effectiveness

Arts integration can also benefit educators by providing them with novel ways to teach challenging concepts or difficult topics. When teachers engage their creativity, they develop new strategies for engaging students meaningfully.

8. Create a Joyful Learning Environment

Infusing daily lessons with creative elements fosters excitement and enthusiasm for learning. Students are inspired by this positive atmosphere and enjoy their educational journey even more.

9. Democratize Education

Arts integration promotes an inclusive environment where students with different abilities, interests, and backgrounds can thrive. By providing students with diverse learning experiences, schools ensure that all students have equal access to success.

In summary, a school-wide arts integration program has the power to inspire everyone involved—students, teachers, and community members alike. With the combination of academic subjects and artistic expression, these programs foster a love for learning and create well-rounded individuals equipped to conquer future challenges.

I Gave My Students the Benefit of the Doubt. Here’s What Happened


As educators, we’re often faced with the challenge of understanding and addressing the unique circumstances that each of our students experiences. In an effort to foster a greater sense of empathy and compassion, I decided to take a risk and give my students the benefit of the doubt during one semester. This is a story about how this decision impacted my teaching style and my relationship with my students.

Embracing a New Approach:

Instead of adhering to strict deadlines and policies, I took a more lenient approach when it came to missed assignments, late submissions, and absences. My ultimate goal was to create an atmosphere where students felt supported and understood, regardless of their personal situations.

The Immediate Impact:

Initially, I was worried that this decision might lead to a decrease in academic rigor or inspire students to take advantage of the situation. To my surprise, these fears never materialized. Instead, I began to see a drastic improvement in the overall atmosphere within the classroom. Students were more engaged in class discussions, more committed to their work, and felt comfortable discussing their challenges with me.

Building Trust:

By giving my students the benefit of the doubt, I was able to establish stronger relationships built on trust. The more compassionate approach allowed for open communication between my students and me. This newfound trust encouraged students to confide in me about any obstacles they faced—even those unrelated to academics—that previously would have been kept secret.

Increased Responsibility:

Ironically, by showing leniency toward deadlines and attendance policies, my students demonstrated a greater sense of responsibility towards their education. They began taking ownership for their mistakes by openly admitting when they were unable or had forgotten to meet a deadline instead of crafting elaborate excuses.

Unexpected Benefits:

There were also unexpected benefits that emerged from this experiment. In addition to improved student-teacher relationships and increased engagement within the classroom, students also began helping one another more. This collaborative culture supported students in not only surviving but thriving in their academic environment. It was incredible to see students rise above their challenges and prove they were more than just their mistakes.


While adopting a more relaxed approach to teaching may not be suitable for every educator, my experience giving my students the benefit of the doubt was overwhelmingly positive. It fostered an environment of trust, responsibility, and collaboration that allowed all of us to grow together. What began as an experiment has now developed into a cornerstone of my teaching philosophy – believing in the good intentions of our students can lead to unprecedented growth and success for everyone involved.

20 Fun Food Chain Activities for Middle School

Introduction: Learning about the food chain plays a crucial role in understanding the balance of life in our ecosystem. Engaging middle school students with hands-on and enjoyable activities will not only teach them valuable lessons but also create an interest in science. Here is a list of 20 fun food chain activities designed specifically for middle school students.

1. Create a Food Web: Divide students into groups, assign each group an ecosystem, and ask them to create a visual representation of the food web within it.

2. Edible Food Chains: Have students build edible food chain models using different types of snacks as representations of each organism.

3. Predator vs. Prey Tag: Play a game where some students act as predators and others as prey, relating it back to the food chain concept.

4. Food Chain Charades: Students act out roles in the food chain through classic charades rules.

5. Build-a-Biome Project: Assign different ecosystems for students to research and design their own diorama including plants and animals found there.

6. Food Chain Jenga: Customize a Jenga set with food chain facts, requiring students to state facts when they successfully remove blocks.

7. Interactive Online Simulations: Explore various food chains via virtual games that teach students about different habitats and environmental interactions.

8. Trophic Level Pyramid: Students construct a pyramid visually representing the trophic levels in an ecosystem.

9. Owl Pellets Dissection: Dissect owl pellets to examine the bones of prey species and learn their role in the food chain.

10. Research Endangered Species: Have students research endangered species in their local area and discuss ways human intervention has impacted their food chains.

11. Energy Flow Race: Organize a relay race that represents different trophic levels and energy loss at each level within a food chain.

12. Invasive Species Debate: Conduct a class debate on the impacts of invasive species on food chains.

13. Decomposition Time Lapse: Create a time-lapse video of decomposition by burying food items in a designated area and periodically observing them.

14. Food Chain Mobiles: Students create hanging mobiles representing a specific food chain using paper cutouts, string, and creativity.

15. Pond-Dipping Exploration: Organize a field trip to a pond to explore aquatic organisms and their roles in the food chain.

16. Nature Scavenger Hunt: Plan a scavenger hunt where students will identify different plants or animals involved in the food chains around the school grounds.

17. Create an Ecosystem Board Game: Students create their own board game based on the food chain interactions within a specific ecosystem.

18. Classroom Herbivore Challenge: Grow vegetable plants and discuss their role as primary producers and what it takes to support human herbivores.

19. Recycling Relay: Play a relay race where students sort trash into categories representing different trophic levels, discussing how waste affects ecosystems in return.

20. DIY Mini-Greenhouse Project: Have students build mini-greenhouses to grow plants, learning about the role of primary producers in initiating food chains.

Conclusion: With these engaging activities, middle school students will gain an understanding and appreciation of the food chain and its importance within our environment. These fun hands-on experiences make learning science enjoyable and memorable, fostering a lifelong love for ecology, nature, and sustainability.

23 Times 1980s Songs Got Teaching Exactly Right

The 1980s was not only a time of big hair and bold fashion, but also a period that produced legendary music. Several artists in this decade managed to cleverly deliver important lessons through their catchy tunes. Here are 23 times when 1980s songs got teaching exactly right:

1. “Don’t Stop Believin'” by Journey – Encourages perseverance and belief in oneself.

2. “Everybody Wants to Rule the World” by Tears for Fears – Explores the thirst for power and the ramifications of human ambition.

3. “With or Without You” by U2 – Teaches about the complex nature of relationships and the importance of compromise.

4. “Eye of the Tiger” by Survivor – Symbolizes overcoming obstacles and building resilience.

5. “Sweet Child O’ Mine” by Guns N’ Roses – Reminds us to cherish those we love before time takes its toll.

6. “Total Eclipse of the Heart” by Bonnie Tyler – Illustrates the impact of heartbreak and the need to confront personal pain.

7. “Time After Time” by Cyndi Lauper – Emphasizes unwavering loyalty and friendship.

8. “Take on Me” by A-ha – Encourages us to take chances, face challenges head-on, and embrace change.

9. “Billie Jean” by Michael Jackson – Serves as a cautionary tale about temptation and deception.

10. “Every Breath You Take” by The Police – Delves into unhealthy obsession and relationships tangled with control issues.

11. “Like a Virgin” by Madonna – Addresses themes of self-discovery and reinvention.

12. “Man in the Mirror” by Michael Jackson – Inspires us to look within ourselves for changes that can make the world better.

13. “I Wanna Dance with Somebody” by Whitney Houston – Celebrates human connection and the joys of dancing together.

14. “We Are the World” by U.S.A for Africa – Promotes unity, global peace, and humanitarian efforts.

15. “Karma Chameleon” by Culture Club – Reflects on personal growth and the effects of change on relationships.

16. “Girls Just Want to Have Fun” by Cyndi Lauper – Reminds us not to take life too seriously, showcasing the importance of having fun.

17. “Love is a Battlefield” by Pat Benatar – Explores the challenges in relationships and teaches that love can be tough but rewarding.

18. “Money for Nothing” by Dire Straits – Offers social commentary on consumer culture, materialism, and privilege.1

19. “Land of Confusion” by Genesis – Encourages critical thinking about political turmoil and social issues.

20. “Under Pressure” by Queen & David Bowie – Acknowledges the pressures of modern life while urging us to show compassion and empathy to one another.

21. “Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)” by Eurythmics – Contemplates the power dynamics in human relations and the importance of pursuing our dreams.

22. “Hungry Like the Wolf” by Duran Duran – Uses animal metaphors to emphasize instincts, desires, and passion in our lives.

23. “Beat It” by Michael Jackson – Advises walking away from violence, highlighting the importance of conflict resolution.

These 23 songs from the 1980s not only sound great but also manage to capture invaluable life lessons that continue to resonate today. Whether it’s tackling social issues or exploring personal growth, these tunes have helped teach countless listeners through their emotive lyrics and timeless themes.

Everybody Gets a Trophy, and That’s OK


In a world where competition is fierce, and success is often defined by the number of trophies or achievements accomplished, we often forget the importance of inclusion and encouragement. The concept of “Everybody Gets a Trophy” has become a staple in many sports and extracurricular activities, especially for young children. While critics argue it undermines the values of hard work and dedication, we will explore why, in reality, it plays a vital role in fostering positivity, inclusivity, and growth.

The Benefits of Inclusive Recognition

1. Encourages Participation

One of the primary benefits of awarding participation trophies is that it creates an environment where youngsters feel encouraged to join and try new things. Fear of failure and exclusion can be detrimental to a child’s motivation to participate in activities, but when they know their efforts will be acknowledged, they are more likely to jump in and give their best shot.

2. Fosters Teamwork and Unity

Everybody getting a trophy highlights the fact that achievements are not solely based on individual performance but rather as a result of collective effort. This notion promotes teamwork by teaching children to support one another as they strive for collective success.

3. Builds Confidence and Self-Esteem

When children receive recognition for their efforts in an activity or sport, they feel valued and confident in their abilities. With the knowledge that their hard work won’t go unnoticed – regardless of outcome – they are more likely to remain persistent in the face of adversity and believe in their potential.

4. Stimulates Personal Growth

By receiving recognition at an early age, children learn the importance of setting realistic goals for themselves. As they grow older, this experience helps them adjust expectations, improve dedication, adapt strategies or techniques relevant for future achievements.

Addressing Criticisms

One might argue that awarding everyone with a trophy can diminish the value of winning or leave kids unequipped to face real-life competition as they grow. However, this concern fails to take into account the importance of blending encouragement and motivation with competition in the right balance. As children progress, coaches, parents, and educators should also emphasize the importance of winning healthily and the lessons that can be taken from defeat.


The “Everybody Gets a Trophy” approach is more than just a fad; it holds much-needed values and benefits for today’s youth. Our society is evolving, and so too must our methods of nurturing and celebrating the growth of individuals. By recognizing these values and striking a balance between self-improvement and competition, we contribute positively to creating confident, collaborative adults in the future.

Talking to Teens About Drinking: A Parent’s Guide


Teenagers are often exposed to new environments, challenges and peer pressure, which may include experimenting with alcohol. It’s essential for parents to communicate with their teens about the risks associated with underage drinking. In this article, we’ll discuss effective ways to open up a dialogue with your teenager about alcohol and create a safe space for honest conversation.

1. Choose the right moment

Initiating a conversation about alcohol at an appropriate time can make the discussion more productive. Wait for a calm and relaxed setting when both you and your teen have time to talk. Avoid bringing up the subject when emotions are high or either of you is feeling particularly stressed.

2. Be open and honest

When discussing underage drinking, it’s important to be open and honest with your teen. Share facts about potential risks associated with alcohol consumption, such as impaired judgment, addiction, accidents or legal troubles. Remain transparent about your own experiences and feelings on the matter, so that trust can be established between you and your child.

3. Encourage questions

Give your teen room to ask questions and express their thoughts regarding alcohol. Encouragement will lead them to understand that it’s normal to have concerns or curiosity about such matters.

4. Listen actively and empathetically

It’s crucial to listen carefully to your teen without interrupting when discussing sensitive topics like drinking. Active listening shows your child that their opinions matter and subsequently encourages open communication.

5. Set clear expectations

Explain your expectations as a parent when it comes to alcohol use by clearly stating the consequences of underage drinking. This transparency enables your teenager to fully understand where you stand on the issue.

6. Provide alternatives

To minimize the likelihood of peer pressure leading to experimentation with alcohol, offer alternative activities that allow teens to socialize without involving alcohol. Ensure personal values are communicated effectively through role modeling – exhibiting healthy behaviors encourages similar actions from your teen.

7. Keep the conversation ongoing

Alcohol use and peer pressure will continuously evolve during the teenage years, so it’s important to maintain open communication with your child. By checking in regularly and initiating discussions surrounding alcohol, you can continue to provide guidance throughout their formative years.


Talking to teens about drinking is crucial in helping them navigate the challenges they may encounter as they grow and develop. Engaging in open dialogue, setting clear expectations and maintaining ongoing conversations can lead to better decision-making and a stronger parent-child relationship.

How Many of These 2017 Teacher Stories Have You Read?


2017 was a year filled with inspiring and memorable teacher stories that captured the hearts of many. These stories not only highlighted the dedication and passion of educators, but also served as a reminder of the impact teachers have on their students. As we take a trip down memory lane, let’s revisit some of these moving teacher stories from 2017.

1. A Math Teacher Used Beyoncé to Teach Geometry

In early 2017, Ciera Paul, a math teacher at ReNEW Cultural Arts Academy in New Orleans, gained fame on social media for her innovative teaching style. Inspired by Beyoncé’s “Formation” lyrics, Paul transformed the song into an engaging geometry lesson that resonated with her students.

2. The Educator Who Donated His Kidney to His Student

Raymond Thompson of Fort Worth, Texas, went above and beyond for his sixth-grade student Katelyn Vincik when he discovered they were a donor match. In May 2017, Thompson made headlines all over the world after donating his kidney to Katelyn and saving her life.

3. The Substitute Teacher Who Received Lifelong Gratitude

In September 2017, Glenn Holland, a substitute teacher in California, received an unforgettable surprise from his students and staff during a school assembly. After spending years using his own funds to provide for children in need at school, his colleagues and students initiated a GoFundMe campaign that raised thousands of dollars for him.

  1. The High School Orchestra That Played an Immigrant’s Theme

In November 2017, Eric Snider and his high school orchestra from Nevada touched hearts when they composed and performed a musical piece dedicated to their classmate Salvador Solis. Solis shared his journey of crossing the border from Mexico to the United States with Snider who created “Just Go With the Flow,” highlighting the ordeal faced by immigrants to raise awareness.

  1. The Teacher Who Helped a Homeless Student Find His Voice

Rhonda Dunlap, a high school English teacher in North Carolina, played a major role in helping her then homeless student, Dontavius Singleton, pursue his love for theater and secure a college scholarship in 2017. Dunlap’s never-ending support allowed Singleton to find solace during difficult times and become an inspiration to many.


The year 2017 was filled with heartwarming teacher stories that emphasized the remarkable impact educators have on their students. From unconventional teaching methods to life-saving acts, these stories serve as a reminder of the selflessness and dedication of teachers worldwide.

18 Foolproof 2nd Grade Classroom Management Tips and Ideas

1. Establish classroom routines: Consistency is key for younger students. Implementing clear routines at the beginning of the school year helps set the tone and creates guidelines for student behavior.

2. Use visual aids: Visual aids like posters, charts, and schedules can help reinforce rules and expectations for students in a memorable and engaging manner.

3. Create a safe environment: Arrange desks and seating in a way that promotes positive interactions while minimizing distractions.

4. Set clear expectations: Be explicit about your expectations regarding student conduct, work quality, collaboration, and respect among classmates.

5. Use positive reinforcement: Regularly acknowledge and reward good behavior with praise, stickers, or small privileges to encourage its continuation.

6. Keep students engaged: Provide multiple opportunities for hands-on learning, interactive discussions, and independent practice to maintain attention levels.

7. Group work: Incorporate collaborative projects in which students can cultivate teamwork skills while learning from one another.

8. Develop a signal system: Use a consistent signal, such as a bell or a hand gesture, to gain student attention for instructions or transitions.

9. Encourage self-monitoring: Teach students strategies to assess their own work or behavior and make necessary adjustments.

10. Implement a daily check-in system: Begin each day with a brief check-in that allows students to express their emotions and set personal goals.

11. Utilize music or songs: Incorporate mnemonic songs or background music to support learning activities or solidify concepts in memory.

12. Manage transitions efficiently: Prepare students for upcoming changes in activities by signaling impending transitions with countdowns or verbal cues.

13. Give age-appropriate tasks: Design assignments that challenge but do not overwhelm second graders so they maintain engagement throughout the learning process.

14. Break tasks into smaller steps: Help students manage workload by dividing projects into more digestible components as they develop organizational skills.

15. Design seating plans: Assign seats to maximize student focus and create an environment that fosters effective learning.

16. Provide backup activities: Prepare extra, relevant activities for students who finish assignments early and ensure these activities align with the primary lesson objectives.

17. Monitor student progress: Continually evaluate individual student progress using formative assessments to guide instruction and provide necessary support.

18. Communication with parents: Cultivate open and supportive channels of communication with parents to build trust, exchange valuable information, and discuss concerns if they arise.

By following these 18 foolproof tips and ideas, second grade teachers can create a well-managed classroom that supports student academic growth, fosters self-discipline, and builds a positive community of learners.

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