Tips and ideas for teaching high school ELA

11 Female Authors to Read Today

March is Women’s History Month – the month when teachers try to make a more concerted effort to read more texts by female authors (although it could be argued that, like Black History, this really should be taking place year-round).  So much of the “canon” in English classes is dead white guys. No disrespect to […]

8 Activities for Teaching The Odyssey

picture of ship at sunset; text overlay reads 8 ideas for teaching the odyssey

When I taught freshmen, I always loved teaching The Odyssey. Students who were seldom engaged got swept up in the story of the Cyclops; admired Penelope’s clever solution to avoid remarrying; criticized Odysseus’ vanity/pride/poor leadership/etc. We’d stop and watch the movie after each section, comparing and contrasting. I could probably teach this epic in my sleep. […]

8 Engaging Ideas for Teaching Animal Farm

picture of red barn; text overlay reads 8 engaging activities for teaching animal farm

One of my favorite parts of British literature is teaching Animal Farm.  It’s short. It’s accessible. It’s always a hit. One of the great things about Animal Farm is that there is more to it than meets the eye. At the surface level, it’s a fun novel (novella?) about a bunch of farm animals who grow […]

11 Spooky Stories for Halloween

I love teaching American lit. While I’ve taught everything from 4th to 12th grade, 11th (typically American lit) is hands down my pick.  If you’ve checked out my American Literature Curriculum post, you know that teaching Gothic literature was always my favorite unit. Poe, Hawthorne, Irving – all the dark, mysterious, engaging authors. It also […]

7 Units for a Complete Brit Lit Curriculum

picture of red telephone boxes with blue text box reading 7 units for a complete British literature curriculum

In my 12 years of teaching, I’ve taught everything from 4th to 12th grade. My favorite (and current teaching position) is 11th grade (click here to read more about my go-to units for American literature). Coming in at a close second for my favorite to teach is Brit Lit. I love Shakespeare (the comedies over […]

Quick and Easy Guide to teaching Greek and Latin Roots

picture of tree with roots with a blue bar across the middle reading teaching greek and latin roots

‍We all know that teaching vocabulary can be a challenge. You want your students to extend their knowledge of English and understand the nuances of words they may encounter in their everyday life or in other classes. One way to do this is by teaching students Greek and Latin roots words.  In addition, many state […]

How to Increase Student Interest by Using Virtual Field Trips in the Classroom

old green school bus on a mountain road; blue banner across bottom that reads how to increase student interest by using virtual field trips in the classroom

I’m a traveler. I love exploring new places, trying new food, learning history, soaking in the local culture. I’ve had the amazing opportunity to take students along on some of these adventures. But, unfortunately, that’s not always possible. Virtual field trips to the rescue. The last few years have seen a rise in the popularity of these interactive, online trips. Not only have they replaced standard in-person trips, they’ve opened up a whole new world of possibilities.