Revitalize Your Afterschool Program with New Materials

clock August 11, 2014 07:50 by author Kaplan Early Learning
With the beginning of school comes many considerations. School supplies, classroom layouts, schedules, and transportation options all have to be arranged for everyday operations to run smoothly. The same is true for afterschool programs! Every year, afterschool program directors should strive to make continual progress and implement new strategies to see students continue to be challenged and excel. While you’re pondering which strategies your afterschool program could use this year, we have a few options for you. [More]

Taming First-Day Jitters for Students… and Their Parents

clock August 8, 2014 10:14 by author Kaplan Early Learning
The first day of school can be a little terrifying—for children AND their parents! As an educator, you can make this transition as smooth as possible by keeping a few things in mind. By easing stress students may have about so many changes happening at one time and ensuring parents you’ve provided a safe environment for students, everyone will find the first day of school a lot less scary that originally imagined. Here are a few classroom approaches you can take to calm those first-day jitters and get everyone’s school year off to a great start! [More]

Classroom Hacks: 6 Ways to Rock Your Open House

clock August 6, 2014 09:27 by author Kaplan Early Learning
Open House Night is just as important for parents as it is for students and teachers. Family engagement and open communication are essential to every child’s education – no matter their age or grade. To ensure you start off with your best foot forward, we have a few tips and tricks to make your Open House run as smoothly as possible. [More]

5 Classroom Setup Tips for the Beginning of School

clock August 4, 2014 03:53 by author Kaplan Early Learning
Looking around your classroom and wondering how to best set it up? Classroom presentation and the environment it creates is a huge indicator in students’ approach to the new school year. Whether it’s incorporating learning centers or choosing appropriate furniture, your classroom layout needs to be one that creates a positive environment for students. We have five suggestions as you go forward planning the perfect classroom! [More]

10 Things Every Kindergarten Teacher Should Know

clock August 1, 2014 15:02 by author Kaplan Early Learning
It’s almost here—the beginning of a new school year! With only a few more weeks of summer left, a few brave souls will take on teaching kindergarten (some for the first time!) With such an exciting year ahead of you, we want to help make your transition to teaching as smooth as possible. We’ve already laid out what kindergartners need to know , now it’s time for 10 things YOU need to know as a kindergarten teacher: [More]

5 Ways to Help Students Foster New Friendships

clock July 30, 2014 14:34 by author Kaplan Early Learning
The first day of school can always be a little daunting for small children. Whether they are coming in with old friends or hoping to make new ones, social interactions go a long way in determining how the school year will play out. That’s why – as educators – we all have to do our best to encourage cooperative play and provide opportunities for friendships to blossom. It is not only an essential part of a child’s social and emotional development, but it will also make your classroom operate more smoothly during the school months to come! Without further ado, here are five ways to help students foster new friendships: [More]

Exploring Elementary STEM with NASA

clock July 28, 2014 10:26 by author Kaplan Early Learning
Love space and exploration? Then you will be excited to know that tomorrow marks NASA’s 56th Anniversary! Established in 1958 by President Dwight Eisenhower, the National Aeronautics and Space Act was passed to encourage peaceful space science exploration. NASA has since gone on to spearhead the Apollo moon landing, the Skylab space station, the creation of the space shuttle, and is currently aiding in the construction of the International Space Station (ISS). NASA also has an abundance of content on their website to look to for lesson plans when you need a little STEM inspiration. Here are a few, fun STEM applications you can use when teaching your elementary students about space: [More]

Choosing the Right Blocks for Your Classroom

clock July 22, 2014 10:01 by author Kaplan Early Learning
There are so many different types of block play! Wooden blocks, soft blocks, LEGO® blocks, magnetic blocks—it’s hard to know which set will be most beneficial to the children in your care. No worries! We’re going to break down a few of our most popular block play items for you: [More]

4 Innovative Ways to Create an Outdoor Classroom

clock July 18, 2014 08:51 by author Kaplan Early Learning
Want to take learning outside but not sure how? A plethora of pins (http://www.pinterest.com/kaplanco/outdoor-learning/) await discovery for making outdoor time beneficial to students. Athletic activities develop gross motor skills, sand boxes encourage sensory play, and sidewalk chalk allows students’ imaginations to soar. Everyone knows that the great outdoors presents a variety of learning opportunities for students, but what we want to do is show you how to take the classroom environment and bring it outside. Prepare for four ways to create outdoor learning spaces! [More]

4 Cost-Effective Ways to Reward Students

clock July 17, 2014 08:56 by author Kaplan Early Learning
Are you finding it hard to keep your students motivated? We have a few creative solutions for rewarding students based on good behavior that will stop even the most challenging of behaviors! Keep reward systems cost-effective while encouraging progress in problem areas with the introduction of these four fun ideas: [More]

How to Engage the Boys in Your Classroom

clock July 16, 2014 10:21 by author Kaplan Early Learning
Constant fidgeting, pushing, running around—does this describe the boys in your classroom? If you’ve found yourself scratching your head and wondering why it seems the girls in your class are “better behaved,” know you’re not alone! After years of believing girls’ and boys’ brains were the same, new research has led scientists to realize that not only are brains “wired” differently between the two genders, but that it affects learning approaches as well! Here are some distinct differences between how boys approach learning as opposed to girls and how you can effectively cater to those differences resulting in a balanced classroom. [More]

Summer Relaxation and Reboot for Educators

clock July 14, 2014 01:27 by author Kaplan Early Learning
The beginning of the school year is quickly approaching! Want to enjoy those last few summer months of sanity while also ensuring you are prepared for the year to come? To put your mind at ease during those well-deserved hours of relaxation, we have a few suggestions for turning that time into experiences that also count toward the classroom. Who said you can’t be a multi-tasker while relaxing? [More]

5 Read-Along Books to Start the Preschool Year

clock July 10, 2014 09:56 by author Kaplan Early Learning
Are you already in back-to-school planning mode? That’s ok! We are, too! Between mental checklists and stocking your classroom with supplies, it’s important that you also consider which lessons are going to be taught in the first few weeks of the school year. Many preschoolers may return to class with a bad case of summer slide (we hope not!) and you may find yourself face-to-face with a room full of students now at wider-ranging skill levels. Want to feel better prepared for whatever the first day of school has in store? Here are five read-along books to quickly engage your students and bring everyone up to speed: [More]

Summer STEM: Putting the Spotlight on Technology

clock July 9, 2014 10:16 by author Kaplan Early Learning
Whether it’s to avoid the dreaded summer slide or simply to integrate a more digital approach into your child’s education, pushing technology as a part of STEM learning is a great strategy for summer! Using computers, building bridges, and operating machinery all require an understanding of technology, and teaching children to integrate that knowledge into their approach to basic problem solving will only expand their capacity to find creative solutions to everyday problems. Here are a few ways to spotlight technology (both at home and in the classroom) and aid children in further science, math and technology explorations. [More]

Talking 'Math' Outside of the Classroom

clock July 7, 2014 09:28 by author Kaplan Early Learning
It’s easy for students to keep literary skills polished over the summer; after all, it’s called pleasure reading for a reason! But continuing student involvement in math outside of the classroom can prove to be a challenge. With organizations like the National Summer Learning Association putting precedence on preventing summer slide, we thought we would give you a few ways to “talk math” outside of the classroom. What’s more, finding ways for students to use math in real-world situations will ultimately better student comprehension when they’re back at school! [More]