Sale in My Store This Week!

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Scholarship Opportunity Autism Behavior Collaboration in Special Education at Utah Valley University

This Blog Post is a little different.  I am writing to let you know about a scholarship opportunity for Utah Valley University's Autism Behavior Collaboration in Special Education.

Spring 2017 ABC in SpEd Scholarship Announcement 
UVU’s Autism Behavior Collaboration in Special Education Project (ABC in SpEd) Eligibility and Scholarship Information Through Individual with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) funds from the Utah State Office of Education the School of Education at UVU is offering a scholarship to qualified applicants.

The scholarship will fund students up to $5100.00 per year (Fall and Spring Semester). Students who have been admitted into UVU’s School of Education and choose the Minor in Autism Studies can apply for the ABC in SpEd project.

 To qualify for scholarship applicants must: 
1. Be officially admitted into the School of Education and begin upper division special education coursework in the Fall of 2017. 
2. Declared Special Education as Major 
3. Declared Minor in Autism Studies. 
4. Complete an individual and group interview. 
5. Submit an ABC in SpEd application. 
6. Submit a resume. 
7. Disposition score of 3 or higher.
 8. Commit to teaching in Utah for at least two years after graduation. 

Once admitted to the ABC in SpEd project, students are expected to: 
1. Maintain all program standards in all coursework.
 2. Maintain expected levels of competence in fieldwork and student teaching placements.
 3. Maintain grades at or above B-. 
4. Maintain GPA of 3.00 or higher. 
5. Participants are expected to adhere to standards of personal integrity, responsibility, and citizenship commonly expected of professional educators.

 Applications will be available Spring of 2017 and due April 7th at 4PM.

 Turn applications into the School of Education Advisement office or directly to Nichole Wangsgard in the McKay Education Building room ME130a.

Scholarship awards for this round will be for three semesters. Scholarship recipients will be notified by May1st , 2017. 

Any questions email or Application for the next round will be available Spring of 2018 if grant is renewed.  

More information available on this site

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Title Page and Cover Pages for Interactive Notebooks

I just love how students are personalizing their interactive notebooks!  I like students to personalize their cover (and make sure their name is clearly visible)

Here are a few covers my students did.

Here are a few I found on Pinterest 

You can also have students make pages for each section of their notebook.  I am thinking of having them leave a blank page and at the end of the unit go back and make a title page for that section that might summarize the section.

Here are some free Printable Editable Covers for Interactive Notebooks
Download These Covers and Use Them for Free in your own classroom FREE Editable Covers for Interactive Notebooks

 Click Here for This Freebie Interactive Notebook Covers FREE!

Thank you for visiting my blog!  Please check out my other great products for Interactive Notebooks Like this Super Pack of Editable Inserts for Interactive Notebooks.  Make them your own!  Change the size, add Text or Graphics to personalize for your lessons or for your own Teacher Products. Editable Flaps and Folds for Interactive Notebooks

Thursday, December 29, 2016

Interactive Notebooks for High School and College

At the heart of my teaching, I am an elementary school teacher.  I currently teach preservice teachers in a professional teacher preparation program.  I have been using interactive notebooks with my science methods class for several years now here is what I have learned.

  • Older students still NEED the engagement of hands-on activities.

  • All students need a place to record ideas.

  • Older students still enjoy expressing themselves creatively.

  • They take pride in their work.

  •  The teacher still needs to provide guidelines as to what goes in the Interactive Notebook.  It needs to be meaningful content, not just cute. 

  • All ages of students benefit from collaboration.  

  • Working together on Interactive Notebooks gives them the opportunity to practice 21st Century skills of communication, collaboration, critical thinking and creativity.

Adult students love the interactive notebooks and take to them easily!

If you would like to try Interactive Notebooks with your students, you may enjoy one of my Interactive Notebook Products.  Templates that you can print out and use! 

 or Pull Out and Sliding Inserts for Interactive Notebooks

Editable Flaps and Folds for Interactive Notebooks This super pack allows you to edit by adding graphics or words to the template before you print it out.  Make it perfect for your own interactive notebook lesson!

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Dash and Dot Robots for STEM

Recently I had a guest speaker in my science methods course.  Megan Hamilton is from Utah State University Extension and she came to show my students some wonderful coding and critical thinking activities using Dash and Dot.  It was wonderful.  I asked her to write up a blog post and she added some helpful information about STEM grants that are currently available for teachers.  Read below to find out how to apply.  

Guest Blog Post by Megan Hamilton 

Our Utah County 4-H Wonder League Robotics Clubs started meeting one night a week at our community training field in October.  Each team consisted of up to five youth (ages 6 to 12 years) with a designated adult club leader.  Each team agreed to meet approximately 2 hours a week.  They were encouraged to complete at least one mission per week.  Our Wonder League Robotics Clubs finished their challenges and submitted their solutions online on December 15th.  Team members will be notified by January 16th whether or not they have moved on to the final round of the competition.  Winning teams are eligible to win a $5,000 STEM grant for their district.  More information about the competition can be found at

Similar robotics programs and interventions utilizing Lego Mindstorms have been successfully implemented in informal educational settings.  Many of the age ranges for Lego Robotics kits vary, but in general they target children 10 years or older.  One of the goals for our program is to implement a robotics intervention geared toward a younger elementary audience.  We hope to increase the likelihood of youth participation in our 4-H STEM programs for older elementary and middle school students.

As an educator, you can choose to use these robots during class time or you can utilize them in after-school programs.  You do not need to run a club (even though it is fun for students to compete in the national challenge).  You will need a tablet or smart phone that is compatible with the Wonder App as well as Dash & Dot robots.  Wonder Workshop also has curricula developed by teachers that is aligned to the Common Core & NGSS standards.

There are grant programs that you can apply to if your school does not have adequate funding for the purchase of your robots.  For example, the Utah STEM Action Center offers a STEM Classroom grant for K-12 educators.  You can find more information about this particular grant at

Advantages of Dash & Dot robots

·      Dash & Dot robots are very durable! Our club participants dropped them many times and we have not needed to repair a single one throughout the entire competition
·      There are not very many pieces to keep track of and clean-up is easy! We only lost one ball during the two months of our competition.
·      Dash & Dot are affordable and can be utilized in multiple ways. We used the robots to sponsor an “Hour of Code” event in addition to the Wonder League Competition.
·      Students can easily learn the coding language while playing Scroll Quest.  This may not sound impressive, but there is less responsibility on the adult organizer or teacher to teach the coding language.  Wonder Workshop teaches kids STEM principles like conditionals, variables, and sequences within the program itself.
·      Students are working together to solve the challenges so it helps develop additional 21st century skills such as collaboration and communication

Megan Hamilton is currently a STEM Professional Practice Assistant Professor for Utah State University Extension.  She works as a STEM specialist in Utah County to provide coherent, focused, and sustainable program(s) in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) with a strong youth emphasis.  She can be contacted at

Find out more about Utah State University Extension Program here:

Thank you for reading this blog post!  Special thanks to my guest blogger Megan Hamilton!  Thank you also to my fabulous future teachers who had a great time learning with Dash and Dot!  

Please follow this blog for more teaching ideas!

If you like this, you might also be interested in one of my science units.  STEM Engineering Activities for Elementary

Force and Motion Unit

Thursday, December 1, 2016

STEM Challenge with Helium Balloon

Here is a fun new STEM challenge.  The students were given helium balloons, string, ribbon, dixie cups, tape and lego men.

They were challenged to make a balloon hover over one of the blue plants on a makeshift landscape.  They could use background knowlege about gravity and air currents to make the balloon craft move to the correct location and hover.
These Elementary Education preservice teachers had a great time!  

Research shows that students respond better to STEM challenges when there is a story connected.   The students were told that the landscape was a rainforest and that the blue plants had a rare medicinal plant that needed to be harvest. They had to hover over it to harvest it.

For more STEM challenges for Elementary see STEM Engineering Challenges for Elementary Education

Special thanks to Dave Francis, Utah State University

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Interactive Notebook Ideas for Science.- Making Sure It Is Meaningful

I have really been evaluating my use of Interactive Notebooks lately and have come up with a few guidelines.

First, Entries in Interactive Notebooks need to be more than cute.  Students need to have a space for meaningful content. Foldable and inserts that allow for lots of writing by the student give them the opportunity to process their ideas, explain concepts and articulate learning. 

Second, teachers need to provide good prompts or questions that allow for some critical thinking.

 What is your understanding of a chemical reaction? Give examples.

Third, inserts should be creative, but not take up so much time that all the learning is about making the elaborate fold. Older kids can of course do more elaborate folds than younger kids, but either way, the real time allotment needs to be for the content the students put into the insert.

Keep these guidelines in mind.  Making it meaningful and guiding your students with quality questions will help them create a great product to demonstrate their learning.

For more materials and inserts for Interactive Notebooks visit my store. Lynda's Store

Be sure to check out my newest project. Integrated Spider Project