Tuesday, 30 October 2012

Creating Early Positive Impressions

As an elementary school student, there is nothing more exciting than seeing yourself represented in the teaching materials, textbooks, or resources used in class. In a classroom where there are a variety of cultures and traditions, it can sometimes be a bit daunting to ensure that everyone feels welcome. It often requires outside research and time on the teacher’s part, and there is always the fear that someone might take offense if traditions or holidays are accidentally addressed inappropriately.

Luckily, there are actually a number of good online sources for Diwali teaching resources and Christmas teaching resources, that will have all of your students enjoying themselves. The best way to instill an appreciation of a variety of cultures and practices in any young person, is to present them in such a way that they are fun, exciting experiences. The early positive impression will go a long way towards informing how they view themselves, and those around them, as adults.


Sunday, 28 October 2012

Make the Holidays Come Alive

Making the everyday or the ordinary, interesting and extraordinary, is a large part of the job of a teacher. The teachers we remember the most, are the ones who made looking at a butterfly an amazing experience, or the instructors who showed us how applicable physics was to everyday life. A good teacher can take a concept and make it reality, in a way that makes a student want to experiment and learn more. During the holidays, teachers have an excellent opportunity to make an annual event into a great learning experience.

However, as an instructor, knowing that you have this opportunity is different than knowing quite what to do with it. This is why Diwali teaching resources, and Christmas teaching resources can be extremely helpful. They can jump start ideas for class activities and new ways of approaching the celebrations. Additionally, they can provide you with a bit more information about the meaning of each tradition. Armed with knowledge and great ideas, you can take your students on a beautiful holiday journey. With any luck, that journey will make you one of those teachers that they remember forever.


Saturday, 27 October 2012

Road Safety Week Teaching Resources (Free and Premium)

Road Safety Week is an established week in the UK calendar. It was set up by Brake in 1997 and organised by the charity annually ever since. It takes place in November each year and aims to give everyone an opportunity to promote road safety in their community, school or company.  

Here at Pencil Street we have a range of free and premium teaching resources to help promote road safety for all age groups from EY, KS1 to KS2.  

Here are a few general ideas and a few ideas linked to resources get you started:
  • Talk about road safety in your assemblies.
  • Hold a special road safety assembly or open event for parents.
  • Make a road safety display in the school. Display resources for road safety available (Ref 71-109)
  • Mention Road Safety Week / promote road safety in your newsletter to parents.
  • Challenge the children to create a road safety poster/leaflet/banner/film/play.
  • Have a special PSHE or citizenship lesson on road safety.Integrate road safety learning into curriculum lessons. Plenty of resources available!
  • Have a special guest in to talk about road safety, for example, a police officer, or drama group.

Road deaths are the biggest ‘accidental’ cause of death of children and young people. All kids and young people use roads and have experienced road danger; so it's the perfect topic for a project that can really engage them as well as save their lives, while also meeting curriculum goals.

Saturday, 29 September 2012

Teaching Remembrance Day

Young children are usually excited to participate in activities that involve celebrations or the holidays. But while your children may look forward to Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas and Valentine's Day activities, you do not have to wait until the major holidays to add variety in your classroom.

Remembrance Day is observed in November (around the 11th), and this day commemorates members of the armed forces who have died in battle. Many students are unfamiliar with this day, but teaching Remembrance Day increases their awareness. If you're discussing World War I, World War II or other historical battles in history books, you can incorporate activities related to Remembrance Day.

At Pencil Street, we have plenty of resources available for teaching Remembrance Day.  These include fact sheets, worksheets, as well as classroom displays. And since many children have a parent or other relative in the armed forces, activities related to Remembrance Day are timely and appropriate.

Pencil Street Educational Resources

Tuesday, 18 September 2012

Teaching resource of the day

The resource for today is 1007-185. This is a very popular arge wall display featuring pictures of children,  showing different emotions and keywords associated with those feelings. Teachers can decide which words to use dependant on the age range they are teaching.


Monday, 17 September 2012

Remembrance Day Teaching Resources

Many special days and events occur during the school year. But while most children are excited to celebrate popular holidays, such as Thanksgiving and Christmas, they might ignore special days with a historical background.Remembrance Day is observed the Sunday nearest Veteran's Day and it commemorates those who died in World War I and World War II. Teaching Remembrance Day may not be a required part of your curriculum, but you might incorporate this event to broaden the minds and hearts of your students.

Pencil Street offers several resources and tools for teaching Remembrance Day. You can download worksheets that include Remembrance Day facts, as well as information on the significance of war memorials. If you're teaching vocabulary, you can download vocabulary worksheets which include words associated with Remembrance Day.

Teaching Remembrance Day can provide your students with a better understanding on the two World Wars, and perhaps develop their interest in historical events.



Sunday, 16 September 2012

Harvest Festival Tools for the Classroom

Harvest Festival is the celebration of food grown on the land and it's not uncommon for schools to host activities around this time. Harvest Festival creates the perfect opportunity to educate young children on the different crops grown in their local area. Plenty of teaching resources are available for children, each designed to pique their curiosity and stimulate their appreciation for the foods around them.

If you're looking for unique activities for your classroom, you can download a variety of themed worksheets. Worksheets appropriate for Harvest Festival include those that picture fruits and vegetables. Younger children can identify the different types of foods on the sheet. This can stimulate a classroom discussion, wherein children relate their favorite fruits and vegetables. Harvest Festival word searchers are also appropriate during this time of the year, as well as Harvest Festival picture cards and vocabulary sheets.

To make the learning experience more fun, you can pass out harvest-themed bookmarks or play a Harvest Festival bingo game. With so many fun and entertaining options, your students will look forward to harvest time every year.

Thursday, 14 June 2012

Using the Olympics as a Teaching Tool

The 2012 Olympics offer a chance not only to learn about the host city, England, but also about the countries who are participating. It presents a unique way to study these countries while getting into the spirit of the games. Students can pick a country, create the flag, learn about the athletes who will represent that country, and present interesting facts about the culture of the people.

Students could also research about past Olympics and present their findings on how many medals and in which event their country did well. Who has hosted before? Who has never hosted? And, why that might be? With over 200 nations expected to participate, many are not well-known. It is a perfect opportunity to search for these nations and learn about their people. Watching the opening ceremonies together gives students a fantastic opportunity to pause and locate a country, perhaps placing a pin as each one is presented.

The Olympic Games present a unique and creative way for teachers to teach their students about their world and how we all come together in the spirit of competition. Finding Olympic teaching materials along with other related teaching resources to support this unit study is very simple. With kits and online worksheets that can be reproduced, you will find many Olympic teaching ideas to support any level of education.

Wednesday, 6 June 2012

Promoting a Better Learning Environment

Today’s teachers need all the help they can get. Pencil Street was created to make their jobs easier. Made up of primary educators, the resource center has been specifically created to promote a better learning experience and more effective classroom.

Visit the site to learn more about Pencil Street's Teaching resources, including classroom resources, design technology, geography resources, history resources, literacy resources, numeracy resources, PHSE and Citizenship, religious education, role play, science resources, and a variety of other topics and themes.

Buying from Pencil Street is easy. Buyers may buy bulk credit to use as needed, and student teachers are eligible to save 50 percent off Pencil Street’s already low prices. There are also school membership packages that allow multiple users to purchase as needed.

Pencil Street teaching resources are designed for the Early Years, Key Stage 1 and 2. Our high quality teaching resources are designed to empower teachers to better facilitate the learning process within the classroom. The displays are designed to follow and expand on the curriculum, and real life images, as well as cartoon characters, provide fun, interesting additions to worksheets and activity plans.
We are constantly expanding and updating the resources, so please visit www.pencilstreet.org often, to see what’s new.

Monday, 28 May 2012

The Importance of Good Teaching Resources

Anyone who says that teaching is easy has clearly never stood in front of a classroom and attempted to educate a room full of six-year-olds. The amount of patience, concentration, organization, and passion necessary to work as an effective educator is incredibly large. Not every school or institute understands this, however, and every teacher has found themselves “flying without a net” in at least one teaching position during their professional education careers.

Having access to good teaching resources is incredibly vital to classroom success. The right tools, be they primary teaching resources or science teaching resources, are wholly necessary in order to ensure that students learn and grow. Education is more than just cramming students full of facts so that they can pass a test. Education is also about developing a whole, thinking person. The kind of education that truly builds a better person requires dedicated faculty and tools that exercise the mind. The combination is nearly unstoppable.

Saturday, 19 May 2012

Olympic Teaching Ideas

The countdown has begun for the London 2012 Olympics, and Pencil Street has great Olympic teaching ideas for teachers who can help spread the excitement for this year’s games. Teach students about how their bodies work during sports, movement and rest. Or cover the history of the Olympics, exploring the rivalry between the Spartans and Athenians.

Students can also learn about the meaning behind the Olympic rings, as well as some of the famous London landmarks the world will see during the media coverage of the games.

Beyond history, students may also look at health risks associated with mass sport events like the Olympics, as well as the carefully planned security measures taken for the event, and for the torch-bearers carrying the Olympic flame.

Pencil Street resources are classroom-ready-to-go. Our extensive collection includes worksheets, activity plans and classroom wall displays, created to support teaching activities for The Early Years, KS1 and KS2.

For more information, visit www.pencilstreet.org.

Monday, 19 March 2012

Easter Teaching Resources

It’s back to the diet before the Easter binge starts. On our Easter Teaching Resources we have some wonderful images of eggs, hot cross buns and Easter bunnies, which do nothing to help provide will power!

While many of our Easter worksheets provide children with a huge range of fun activities, I also think it is important that we do also provide resources that cover the religious significance of Easter. We have done our best to provide a good balance of educational, informative and creative sheets for all ages. 

Many of these could be used to keep the class gainfully occupied while you make a start on end of term clearing up!

Teaching Resource Designer

Friday, 16 March 2012

Spring teaching resources

Now that the weather is a little milder, I am beginning to feel as though spring is coming. Famous last words as it will no doubt start to rain soon! While in the garden yesterday picking daffodils, I thought it would be good to use images of spring flowers when adding to our spring teaching resources. Which is my job for next week at Pencil Street.

Lucy our graphic designer as always comes up with some lovely pictures, which make the spring worksheets very attractive for children of all ages.

Spring is the transition between winter and summer.  The specific definition of the exact timing of "spring" varies according to local climate, cultures and customs. In the Northern Hemisphere, the astronomical vernal equinox (currently around 20 or 21 March) is often taken to mark the first day of spring.

Resource Designer

Thursday, 1 March 2012

Olympic Teaching Resources

Since our blog about the Olympics,  released in January this year, we have developed so many Olympic teaching resources to support the Games. Boy have you teachers been downloading them fast!  

There are just over 60 resources so far and we aim to have at least 100 by June. With the Diamond Jubilee and the Olympics this year,  we are spoilt for choice.

We have also developed many more Early Years Olympic worksheets since January, as many of you requested and are due to release the classroom displays in the next few days. 

Pencil Street will continue to develop resources right up until the end of June as there is such a wealth of great material to choose from to bring this topic to life for the primary school classrooms. 

Pencil Street is a ‘pay-for’ professional site, but we have released a number of resources for free to support teachers/parents who do not want to subscribe to our other resources. Thank you to everyone who has provided so many ideas and taken the time to request specific resources.


Thursday, 23 February 2012

Born Free Teaching Resources

It has really been quite a moving morning working on the Born Free teaching resources learning about the deprived animals they have rescued. They really are doing such a wonderful job and Pencil Street is happy to support them by offering our range of free teaching resources based around the animals we have adopted.

Friday, 3 February 2012

Queens's Diamond Jubilee

I have been busy mass producing Diamond Jubilee teaching resources for Pencil Street. Even though I feel we now have a very good range of fun and educational worksheets for The Early Years, KS1 and KS2, I know there are still loads more to be done.

While writing this I just though of another idea for a worksheet that would be useful and I thought I had just finished the final list! Any comments for any further resources always welcome.

Anita Solomon
Resource Designer