Curbing Bad Language in the Classroom

clock October 24, 2014 09:00 by author Kaplan Early Learning
“Uh-oh. Someone said a bad word!” If you work with children or have children of your own, you’ve probably heard (and said) this or similar statements many times. Children use inappropriate words for a variety of reasons—they may hear someone else say the word and say it on accident, they may be upset and use bad language to hurt someone else, or they may say a curse word to get attention from adults and other children. Inappropriate language is often a challenging behavio... [More]

Using Pizza to Teach Math

clock October 23, 2014 10:30 by author Kaplan Early Learning
If you like eating pizza, you have another reason to enjoy a slice this month—October is National Pizza Month! Pizza is one of those foods that almost everyone can appreciate, so think outside of the pizza box and celebrate the gooey, cheesy goodness with your students by using pizza as a tool to teach counting, shapes, sorting, addition, subtraction, fractions, and other math concepts. Whether you choose to use real pizzas or pizza-related materials (such as the Pizza Fraction™ Fun ... [More]

Preschool Halloween Hacks and Activities

clock October 21, 2014 10:30 by author Kaplan Early Learning
Halloween is less than two weeks away—are you ready? If you haven’t started planning a class Halloween party or if you have no idea about the types of activities you want to include in your lesson plans, we can help you save time and energy! Here’s a list of quick and easy preschool Halloween hacks and activities that your preschoolers (and their parents) will love: 1. Pumpkin Pie Playdough Candy is a popular treat for students on Halloween, but pumpkin pie playdough is a grea... [More]

Halloween Equals Writing Prompts Galore!

clock October 17, 2014 10:00 by author Kaplan Early Learning
We've recently talked about utilizing writing notebooks and creating successful writing workshops on the Kaplan Blog, but one thing we haven't talked about is writing prompts. Writing prompts give children purpose in their writing and can spark their creativity and imagination. Whether children are just learning to write or have more advanced writing skills, you can pick writing prompts that are developmentally appropriate while also being fun for children to brainstorm and come up with creative... [More]

The Great School Lunch Debate

clock October 16, 2014 10:30 by author Kaplan Early Learning
It’s National School Lunch Week! We thought we would celebrate by discussing the ongoing school lunch debate and by sharing tips on how you can address parents’ concerns about what their kids are eating at school. In recent years, school lunches have been at the center of a national conversation about the nutritional value of the food served in schools. Some people argue that school lunches offer too many bad food choices and not enough healthy options—something the Healthy, Hu... [More]

Rules for a Friendly Preschool Classroom

clock October 14, 2014 10:30 by author Kaplan Early Learning
There’s a lot going on in October–Fire Prevention Week, National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Yom Kippur, Columbus Day, Halloween–but did you know that October is also National Bullying Prevention Month? People often think of bullying as something that occurs in elementary school and in the upper grade levels, but bullying can also occur in preschool and other ECE environments. According to, “Children as young as 12 months can be aggressive when relatin... [More]

Questioning Strategies: If You Want Good Answers, Ask Good Questions!

clock October 9, 2014 10:30 by author Kaplan Early Learning
Guest Post by Ellen Mulligan How many questions do you ask in the course of one math class? The answer would probably astound you. We ask many questions. However, are they deep, thought-provoking questions? Tape your class some day and really analyze the types of questions you ask. I would venture to say that the vast majority of them require only “one word” or “one number” answers. It is a by-product of the fast food economy. We drive up to a window, order the #5, and re... [More]

Tips for a Successful Writing Workshop

clock October 7, 2014 10:30 by author Kaplan Early Learning
Children want to write… Choice About Topics Best writing is that which comes from a writer’s thoughts, experiences, and dreams. A prompt of the day or a scripted writing curriculum will not provide the level of authenticity, inspiration, and motivation that comes from allowing children to write about what matters most to them. Support children in understanding that they have everything they need to be great writers: powerful ideas and a desire to share them with others. It is critic... [More]

Take Part in Our Pumpkin Picasso Contest!

clock October 6, 2014 10:00 by author Kaplan Early Learning
What do you think of when you hear the word "fall"? We think of PUMPKINS! October is the perfect time to get in the fall spirit and explore creative crafts with children. Whether it’s bringing in baked pumpkin goods for snack time, using items around the house for DIY pumpkins, or breaking out the paint for kid-safe jack-o-lanterns, pumpkins provide the perfect canvas for you and the children in your care to let imaginations soar! We recently launched our Pumpkin Picasso Contest to give si... [More]

Making Halloween Educational for Kids

clock October 2, 2014 10:30 by author Kaplan Early Learning
How do you plan to celebrate Halloween in your classroom? Will you have a costume parade, throw a Halloween party, decorate pumpkins, or pass out lots of candy? These and other similar activities will only add to children’s excitement about the holiday, but Halloween-related activities aren’t usually the most educational of activities you can plan for students. In fact, some people may say that these types of activities are a waste of time and resources. While you can argue that Hall... [More]

Tips for Teching Out Your Classroom!

clock September 29, 2014 11:33 by author Kaplan Early Learning
Looking for new technology to “tech out” your classroom? You’re in luck! From tablet charging stations to interactive software, we’ve released several new educational technology items that we think will be a big hit in the classroom and make for a more effective teaching strategy. Here are five forms of #edtech to encourage digital learning in your students: [More]

Valuing Community: Teaching Students to be Good Neighbors

clock September 26, 2014 08:53 by author Kaplan Early Learning
Teaching students to value service and community from a young age is an important part of early education; however, it can sometimes be hard to find opportunities for little hands to get involved. In honor of Good Neighbor’s Day on Sunday (September 28th), we thought we would share five easy ways for students to practice being good neighbors: [More]

Comic Book Day | Giving Children Heroes

clock September 24, 2014 14:12 by author Kaplan Early Learning
All students look up to someone, regardless of whether those chosen for the pedestal are instilling good habits. As educators, we have the opportunity to provide appropriate role models for children struggling to find someone to follow who will not lead them astray. Comic Book Day is a great opportunity to provide students with heroes, to point out the successful people around them, and to show them how they can accomplish whatever they set their mind to do. Here are a few ways you can teach your students about role models and provide them with the heroes they deserve: [More]

Setting Pace in the Classroom

clock September 24, 2014 09:37 by author Kaplan Early Learning
It must have been Jim Croce’s short stint as a junior high school teacher in South Philadelphia that inspired him to write Time in a Bottle. The need for more time is always at the top of every teacher’s wish list. How do we compensate? Never fear, there are many ways to trick time and establish the perfect pace for your classroom: [More]

4 Fun Activities for the First Day of Fall!

clock September 22, 2014 08:16 by author Kaplan Early Learning
Fall officially starts today! We thought we would give you a few fun ways to celebrate as your students learn about the change of seasons. With the changing leaves and abundance of fruit come even more opportunities for outdoor play, color recognition, and yummy, homemade recipes! From leaf collecting to planting seeds for spring surprises, here are four fun activities you can use to get students excited about fall: [More]