I think it is telling that I normally post my best of posts from 2020 earlier in December- and here we are jamming them all together! Whew! It has been a year. I am currently EXTREMELY pregnant- and hoping to fit two more weeks in with my students before baby girl comes! I am simultaneously ready for her to be here yesterday, and trying to tie up all the loose ends at the same time.
First up, my most popular posts from 2020! It is not surprising that many of these posts are about virtual learning:
- The eighth most popular post was about online assessments. I have done many of these same assessments this year as my middle school classes are still exclusively virtual. My one change? Trying to incorporate more time for free writes in class.
- My seventh most popular post was about how to deliver CI to an energetic class. We have all had classes that we need to listen to us talking but struggle to do so for various reasons. This post explains how I have managed.
- This post details how I transferred teaching novels in person to teaching novels online. (And when I feel like I am in a rut, I go back to this post!) Luckily for me, we have been able to distribute our class set to our students. But I am so fortunate to be able to continue with my curriculum and incorporating novels. It has definitely kept me sane in 2020!
- In my fifth most popular post, I explain how I use Pear Deck. Pear Deck is one of my favorite technology tools and has been extremely helpful for me this year. In this post, I explain the basics of how to set the Pear Deck up and how to use it.
- My Street Food Viewing Guides that I collaborated with Bethanie Drew and Kara Jacobs also makes the top list! I love this in particular because I wouldn’t have been able to put together such a comprehensive activity without Bethanie and Kara. Also- I LOVE this series! Although- full confession, I have been saving this to use with my maternity sub- but other people have loved using it in class.
- While this was my initial list of printable and online activities for extended closings, this can be a good reference along with something to bookmark when you are sick.
- When COVID first started to strike, I wrote this post that explained how I had taught before in a blended/online setting. The ideas and tips are still relevant today!
- Finally- my most popular post was a bit less timely- about the Super Bowl! I definitely plan on putting out another post this year for the Super Bowl- and my family is ALL IN for the Buffalo Bills this year
Ironically, one of my most popular posts are about my horoscopes- but they always miss the list because they are from the previous year. This year, I updated them for 2021! We will see how many come true. I definitely didn’t predict COVID last year. Also, some discuss travel and being social. Let’s keep our fingers crossed that these are possible this year!
I switched the format from a PDF to Google Slides. I made the second slide interactive to click on the correct horoscope. If you are back in person, you can always select: File, Download and choose PDF.
A HUGE thank you to Enid Lopez Reed, Valerie Guarino and Ana Leon-Tavora for proofreading these for me! It is always so hard to get it done before the New Year!!
With my students, I have them write out their thoughts and then discuss them with other classmates. They can fill out this form.
If you are looking for some other ideas to start off the New Year, this post still has plenty of relevant ideas including a few resources about the 12 uvas. Finally, if you are like me and need to review novels after break, check out this post that I wrote last year.
Edited to add: I created a This or That Jamboard as well about winter! I don’t love discussing break with my students because they have all had very different experiences and many times these discussions highlight that- especially this year during COVID. Instead, I came up with these comparisons that many kids will experience! For the Jamboard, students can add a sticky note with their name on it and slide it to the side that they prefer.
Jenny Robbins created this amazing slideshow with characteristics of each sign as well! Students can confirm if they feel that these characteristics represent them or not!