October’s Teacher’s Corner Column: How To Be Proactive and Organized Year-Round

Teacher’s Corner is a monthly newsletter from eNotes just for teachers. In it, experienced educator and eNotes contributor Susan Hurn shares her tips, tricks, and insight into the world of teaching. Check out this month’s Teacher’s Corner column below, or sign up to receive the complete newsletter in your inbox at eNotes.com.

Whether you’re a new teacher or a classroom veteran, the school year can feel overwhelming, more so than ever since the demands of standards-based testing and professional development have grown increasingly complex and time consuming. Teaching now seems to require holding down two jobs at once: teaching kids with one hand and meeting a plethora of administrative mandates with the other. It’s tough to carry such a load day after day without sinking under the weight.

According to the old proverb, “A stitch in time saves nine.” It’s true, and it’s still good advice. Being proactive takes a little time, but it saves a lot of work and heads off problems, making a difficult year more manageable and less stressful. Here are a few ways to save yourself in the classroom by acting sooner rather than later:

  • Organize your paperwork, but don’t overdo it:
    • An organizational system shouldn’t be so complicated that it takes hours to create and you have to remember what’s filed where when you’re looking for something.
    • Backing up critical information is a must, but recording the same information in multiple places wastes time.
    • Making lists keeps things on track, but if you have so many lists you need a master list to keep track of them, you’ve overachieved! (I’m speaking from experience here, so trust me.)

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New to eNotes.com: Research Paper Starters

We do the digging so you don’t have to.

Research-Design

When you don’t know where or how to start your research paper, dive into an eNotes Research Paper Starter. We clearly explain and analyze over 1,500 complex subjects so that you can concentrate on learning what you really need to know and writing a great paper.

Why use a Research Starter? Two reasons:

  • easily fine-tune the thesis of your paper
  • locate expert sources without spending precious hours scouring a library database

Read on to find out more about this latest feature from eNotes!

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Answer Questions, Earn Money for School – eNotes’ New Scholarship Program

Each month we’re awarding a $500 grant to one of our standout students. Could it be you?

Welcome to a new kind of scholarship program. At eNotes, we don’t need you to write an essay to try and stand out from the millions. We just want you to share your knowledge with others and help your fellow students get through their homework assignments.

Contribute your answers to eNotes’ Homework Help and you’ll be automatically entered to win a $500 grant each month! How does it work? It’s simple:

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eNotes is on Pinterest!

Check out our first three Pinterest boards as we collect tips and tricks to help you study and teach smarter.

Dorm Room Ideas

College Dorm Decoration/Organization Ideas, futon/lounge under one lofted bed, work/organization (TV too) under another lofted bed

School Binder Organization Tips

Even after graduating college I still use binders and notebooks. It helps me organize all my thoughts, ideas, to-do lists, goals and steps to achieve them, etc. This is a cute decoration idea for my binders - go and do

Teacher Tips and Tricks

I am so excited to try using a teacher binder this semester to help me stay organized! Great tips for making it fit what you need. #teacherbinder

Find and follow us at www.pinterest.com/enotescom.


New Quizzes from eNotes!

Hi, everyone! While some of you might already be preparing for the next quiz you’ll be taking at school, some of us over at eNotes have been having (way too much) fun trying to  make some. Don’t worry, though— none of these quizzes will affect your grade. Have a look at the list below to see what we’ve added to our collection so far!

1. Take the Shakespearean Deaths Quiz to figure out which tragedy has the highest body count, where you can read about revenge in the form of unwitting cannibalism, and more!

 Why, William… why?!

2. If you take the  Authors and Animals Quiz, be prepared for more than beloved dogs and cats of various authors. There may or may not be a lobster involved. Oh, also a bear.

SAM_4519 …Fluffy?

3. At some point in your life, you might have encountered a book for which your hatred now burns with the fire of a thousand suns. Well, you are not alone in your passionate distaste for certain literature. Take our Author-on-author Insults Quiz to learn about the scathing remarks authors have made about other authors and their work.

“Lame!”

4. Remember that bit about people sharing your hatred? Well, not everyone is just content to rant about it at the next book club meeting. Some books offend people so deeply that they start throwing around the dreaded “b-word”— banned, that is. Our Banned Books Quiz contains questions that highlight some of the silliest reasons for banning books, quotes from authors who disapprove of censorship, and other fun tidbits about the baddest books in the business. A warning to those with weak constitutions: one of the books in this quiz features two rabbits getting married.

 Won’t someone please think of the children?

5. Last but not least, there’s a little something to brighten your day and give you a nice change of pace if you happened to have already taken the first and admittedly morbid quiz on this list. The Love Quotes from Famous Authors Quiz is sure to give you some warm, literary fuzzies. What did Mark Twain have to say about matters of the heart? Who loved so deeply he longed for a new set of words to express his devotion? Take the quiz to find out!

 D’aww.


August’s Teacher’s Corner Column: Schools of the Future—Oh, My

Teacher’s Corner is a monthly newsletter from eNotes just for teachers. In it, experienced educator and eNotes contributor Susan Hurn shares her tips, tricks, and insight into the world of teaching. This month, she’s looking to the future of teaching with a skeptical eye. Check out this month’s Teacher’s Corner column below, or sign up to receive the complete newsletter in your inbox at eNotes.com.

Predictions about how students will be educated one day are intriguing, but a few of them are downright scary when you think of the implications. Some visions of education in the future seem really off-the-wall, but others are not hard to imagine, for better or worse, considering the continuing impact of technology in the classroom and how it has already changed instructional practices. Here are a few highlights from the prognosticators:

  • Schools will consist of interlocking modular pods that can be added to or removed from a basic structure to adjust for the increase or decrease in a school’s population.
  • Modular schools will be portable, easily moved from one location to another as the general population shifts geographically.
  • Students will be micro-chipped to facilitate supervision and safety.
  • Classes will be conducted with robots providing instruction.
  • Traditional schools will cease to exist. Students will complete individual studies on computers at community centers open 24/7, working when it’s most convenient for them and communicating with teachers by voice mail.
  • All field trips will be virtual, and students will attend virtual workshops conducted by recognized authorities in various fields.
  • Hands-on learning will be phased out; students will interact solely with 3-D models, touching only computer keys.
  • Computer keyboards will be phased out. Students will use hand and eye gestures, like playing games on a Wii, to control electronic tablets. Students will write with digi pens.
  • Large multi-national companies will have an increasing influence on curriculums and school resources.

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3 Places to Find the Help You Need on eNotes, Free

It’s almost time to head back to class. Are you ready? Make sure you’re set for school with help from eNotes!

In this post, we’re covering the 3 best areas of eNotes to find the help you need with your upcoming classes. Even better: most of the help you find on eNotes is completely free to access. Check out our eNotes refresher course below and be prepared for Fall!

Don’t have an eNotes account yet? Sign up here today to create your free account and start searching for expert answers.

1. eNotes Annotated eTexts

Did you know that eNotes hosts over 900 texts online in our eTexts section? From poems to plays, short stories to biographies, we’ve got hundreds of works that teachers commonly select for assigned reading and which you can read on your computer or mobile device for free. You don’t even have to buy your next assigned novel if you don’t want to!
What’s better than an entire library at your fingertips for no cost at all? An entire library of annotated eTexts. Over the past year, eNotes’ educators have been working hard to provide you with expert annotations on some of the most challenging works of Literature. From Dickens to Shakespeare and everything in between, they’ve written comments on important words and passages to help you better understand what you’re reading. To read these annotations, hover your cursor over any highlighted words found in any eNotes Annotated eText. A comment will pop up explaining the significance of those highlighted words. Annotations could cover glossary definitions, analysis or background information–just one way that eNotes helps you to study smarter.

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