Best Back to School Ideas 🍏

An Apple a Day Linky- Enrichment

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It’s that time again!
 Last week’s topic was Intervention. 
Thanks again Daina for writing up an AWESOME post while I was on vacay! If you didn’t get a chance to read it, click here to check it out!
This week’s focus is…


How do you challenge your top achieving students? I know I always set a goal of at least one year’s growth for ALL students, this includes my above benchmark students. Here are a few (SUPER EASY) ways I like to step in up a notch in my classroom.


One of the easiest ways to challenge your students is to allow self-selected reading. Allowing students to choose their own text to read and interact with creates a more authentic learning experience. Especially if you’ve taught your students how to choose, “just right” books. 
TIP:  I like to teach my students the “Five Finger Rule”.  If you are not familiar with this strategy here’s a quick run down on how it works:

After choosing a book, students open the book and read a page. For every word they struggle reading, they put down a finger. If by the end of the page, all five fingers are down, then the book is too challenging.  If all 5 fingers are still up, then the book is too easy.   

At the beginning of the year, I like to give each student a “Five Finger Rule” bookmark that I found online YEARS ago. 
Click the picture to download this for FREE
(If you know where I found this, PLEASE let me know so I can credit it properly! )
I also like to differentiate the homework I assign. Using homework menus is one of my faves! 

(Click the pictures to check out these homework menus I created for phonics practice.)
Kagan Structures
If used properly, Kagan structures can challenge EVERYONE in your classroom. I love using shoulder and face partners for quick activities like Rally Coach. Students learn best by teaching! Even a simple worksheet becomes elevated in it’s engagement level.

 (These students are working on this writing activity)

Common Core

One of the wonderful things about Common Core is the rigor that is required! It forces you to push ALL your students. Have you actually looked through the lexile ranges?!
 (To see a CCSS resource full of ALL the Common Core ELA standards and requirements for 2nd grade, click here)

These are just a *few* ways that you can challenge your students in your classroom. Be sure to check out how these other wonderful bloggers challenge their students.


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Hi, I'm Leigh.

The Applicious Teacher is all about creating hands-on and engaging lessons that align with the standards while still having time for your life. This is your place for ideas, tips, and resources for the REAL teacher!


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