Teachers everywhere are complaining of a decline in children's imaginations. Our students spend hours sitting in front of screens and play video games where everything is created for them. It's no wonder children can't write a story if we ask them. An imagination needs to be exercised! Here are some ways you can promote imagination and creativity in elementary school.

1. Read many types of stories often and early

Some of the best ways to get students' imaginations churning is to read them stories. Read them many different types of stories from many different genres. Read fantasy, realistic fiction, historical fiction, science fiction, etc...

2. Read a story as a class, but don't finish it

Give your students a chance to write an ending to a story. They may write the predictable ending that actually happens in the book, or they may write something completely different.

3. Read a story as a class and have students write alternative endings

After you read an entire story, ask your students to think of a different ending. You can have young students draw alternative endings to a story.

4. Give students plenty of silent time to think and write

Distraction is the enemy of creativity. Providing quiet, down time is a great chance to get students' imaginations working. Try limiting as many distractions from your classroom as possible.

5. Give students time to share

Don't worry about students copying each other's ideas! Hearing classmates' ideas can help inspire creativity.

6. Get outside

Take your students outside and give them time to write, draw, or think. Being in nature can help students think creatively and inspire them!

7. Investigate

Give students opportunities to be curious! If you are in the middle of a non-fiction unit, you can still promote imagination by allowing your students to investigate and learn more about various topics. You never know--a shark might show up in your student's next writing.

Don't forget to pin these ideas for later!

Throughout third grade, your students will learn many different math concepts. The most important thing they will be learning is multiplication. Building multiplication fact fluency in third grade is crucial to students being able to have success with math in later grades. While there are so many math concepts being taught during third grade, it is important to continuously be practicing multiplication facts with your students.
Small group instruction can be one of the most beneficial times of the day. But, it can also be chaotic and stressful if it is not under control.

Do any of these sound like you or your class?
  • Your students are loud or off task during groups
  • Your students do not respect/listen when you redirect them
  • Your students are not productive during small groups, or they don't complete their work
  • You're considering doing away with small groups because you aren't sure it's worth it

I created this five day email sequence to help you regain control during small groups! Each day you will be emailed an actionable tip that you can implement in your classroom immediately. The tips will help you get your students to be part of the solution and get things calmed down. Small group instruction can help your students make huge gains and is a wonderful way to differentiate your instruction. However, it can only happen if things are under control. Sign up now to take back control in five days!

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    For some students, the concept of the distributive property is completely abstract and something they cannot begin to understand. To help students make the connection, it is important to show them how the distributive property works, in a concrete way. Once students understand this, they can begin to use the distributive property to help them solve multiplication facts that look intimidating. For third graders, this may be equations that have larger factors, like 6, 7, 8, 9, or 12. For fourth and fifth graders, this may be multiplying two digit numbers or later three digits.

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