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Dr. Margo Turner's Posts

Reading and the Grand Canyon:  There is no shame in guiding reading, or readers

Reading and the Grand Canyon: There is no shame in guiding reading, or readers

During the summer we celebrated our twins 13th birthday with an intentional trip to and around the Grand Canyon.  Biking around the south rim, hummer riding through the red rocks of Sedona, and kayaking on Lake Powell through Antelope Canyon were highlights for each of us.  Because we wanted this trip to be informative, inspirational and enjoyable, my husband, Doug, and I did research before we tr...

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2 important skills to prepare for college and for life

In a 2015 article for Time Magazine, college professor Tim Spiker listed his top 15 tips for high school graduates headed to college. Before I share some of his list, it is the idea behind the course I teach for 7th graders entitled Strategies for Learning, Research and Writing. The idea, in form of a question, goes something like this, “What skills do students need to thrive in academic settings?...

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Developing our students’ secret sauce

Everyone loves a good recipe but this “secret sauce’ isn’t something you eat…instead it is what you do that is unique to you. It’s your niche, where you shine, what makes you stand out from the crowd, and something I think a lot about as a mom and as a teacher.  Developing lifelong learners is a goal of brain-based teaching and something that is “caught” and can be “taught”. Where to start:  Maybe...

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teaching Brain

What we get to do: Hospitality in the classroom

Orange post-it note, #2 pencil and first grade spelling: “thank you for coming”, followed by 2 sketched balloons and a heart.  She handed it to me as I was lining up the 19 students in a classroom where I had been the substitute teacher for the day.  Such a genuine act of hospitality from someone I had just met, and not very old either.  4 words that made me feel noticed, appreciated and valuable....

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Printing money

Intaglio: Making money and deliberate teaching

Intaglio (/ɪnˈtæli.oʊ/ in-TAL-ee-oh; Italian: [inˈtaʎʎo]) is the family of printing and printmaking techniques in which the image is incised into a surface and the incised line or sunken area holds the ink. It is the direct opposite of a relief print. Our twins like money, so recently we toured the Bureau of Engraving and Printing in Ft. Worth, Texas, which is one of two places in the US where US ...

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ADHD: What to Know, What to Do

What to know First, let’s get the facts straight.  According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention ( Number of children 3-17 years of age ever diagnosed with ADHD: 5.9 million Percent of children 3-17 years of age ever diagnosed with ADHD: 9.5% Percent of boys 3-17 years of age ever diagnosed with ADHD: 13.5% Percent of girls 3-17 years of age ever diagnosed with ADHD: 5.4...

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Teaching students HOW to study vs. TO study

Let’s face it, much of the work of school is memorization.  Math facts, spelling lists, state capitals, math formulas…lots and lots of things to memorize and those who do it well often get good grades and plenty of smiley faces on their papers.  What about the students who struggle with memorization?  Is there a way to help them? To briefly review, memory consists of both implicit memories, such a...

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Growing or Fixed? Changing Students’ Mindsets About Literacy

LeAnn Nickelsen offers a powerfully practical overview in the article on entitled, Simple Strategies for Developing a Growth Mindset in Your Students.  This article will continue the dialogue of mindsets specifically to teachers of literacy. In a recent graduate class one of my students who is a literacy interventionist at a public elementary school decided to follow up on ...

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Children brain based needs

Two things every young child needs

(and don’t worry, they are free!) Turn on the radio, TV, read a mom’s blog and you are inundated with the latest “must haves” for young children…everything from the right Easter dress to the newest toy or video games. While all of these things are nice, let’s be honest, they are wants not needs. Maslow gave us helpful perspective on what are truly needs and when you look at his hierarchy you will ...

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