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Not So Wimpy Teacher Podcast

This is a podcast for busy teachers who want to engage their students in meaningful hands-on learning. You will receive simple, innovative and practical teaching tips and ideas for teaching math, reading and writing.

Weekly hand curated podcast episodes for learning

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002 How to Teach Students to Write About Math

Writing about math helps to deepen your students' math understanding. It also helps them to just get better at word problems in general. But how do you teach students to write more than a word or two? I have a five step process for you! https://www.notsowimpyteacher.com/p/not-so-wimpy-teacher-podcast.html


5 Mar 2019

Rank #1

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Teaching Grammar in 10 Minutes Per Day

How do you teach grammar? Most teachers in my Facebook groups are complaining that grammar takes way too long to teach and their students aren’t remembering the skills that are being taught. We have fourth graders who are still struggling with identifying nouns. That’s tough when they have so many more complex language standards to master! It is true that grammar is a challenge to teach, but it is also true that you can make it easier! In this episode, I am sharing three of my most important tips for teaching grammar in just 10 minutes per day. Grammar does not replace writing. Grammar needs to be taught in small pieces. Grammar is easier with a routine. Next, I’m sharing the routine that I used and several tips that made each day work. Monday: Mini Lesson with a PowerPoint Tuesday: Interactive Notebook Wednesday: Writing Thursday: Task Card Scoot Friday: Assessment Finally, I have created grammar units that include PowerPoints, interactive notebooks, task cards and assessments. Not So Wimpy Grammar Units: Third grade: http://bit.ly/NotSoWimpy3rdGrammar Fourth Grade:http://bit.ly/NotSoWimpy4thGrammar Fifth Grade: http://bit.ly/NotSoWimpy5thGrammar


6 Jan 2020

Rank #2

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3 Ways to Save Time Lesson Planning

How much time do you spend lesson planning every week? What if you could cut that time in half? Lesson planning is a necessary evil of teaching. Some schools require super specific plans. If we are not careful this process can be a huge time sucker. In this episode I am going to share three tips that made lesson planning quicker and more effective for me. Batching Using Year Long Bundles Collaboration Want to learn more about batching? Check out episode 33!


20 Jan 2020

Rank #3

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Reviewing Classroom Procedures After Winter Break

Are you planning to spend time reviewing classroom procedures during your first week back after break? In a perfect world, we can jump right back into routines in January and pick up right where we left off before winter break. Right?! If your mentality is to jump right back in, you may find yourself pulling out your hair because no one seems to remember your classroom procedures. Some of your students can jump right back in and remember your expectations. However, don’t assume that all of your students can. I encourage you to take some time to review your routines in a fun way so that you have a smoother transition into next quarter. In this episode, I share three different activities that make reviewing procedures more fun: Board Games Group Presentations Find Someone Who Click HERE to grab free board game cards and the Find Someone Who game. Fourth Grade Fifth Grade


31 Dec 2019

Rank #4

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003 Differentiating Grammar

Do you have any students who struggle with grammar? I have some tips for you! My grammar units: Bit.ly/NotSoWimpyGrammar


5 Mar 2019

Rank #5

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Managing the Stress and Overwhelm of Teacher Life

Teaching is tough work. You just can’t argue with that. It’s easy to get stressed out, overwhelmed and burn out. My guest, Dawn Pensack, was a middle school math teacher. She actually got so stressed out as a teacher that she physically got sick. Dawn learned from her experience and she now focuses on helping adults to manage their stress, improve their overall emotional wellness, and find more happiness in their lives. Dawn shared five simple ways that busy teachers can manage their stress and overwhelm so that they can enjoy teaching more. Mindful Breathing Balance Poses to Focus the Brain Bright Spots How do you work best? Tapping All of these tips are super simple and they don’t add extra things to your to-do list! You can learn more from Dawn by heading to her website: www.dawnpensack.com


21 Oct 2019

Rank #6

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10 Tips for New Teachers

Are you a brand new teacher? Or are you a newish teacher who still feels brand new? I have some tips to help you to have a fantastic first year! More Info: What to do when you get hired: https://www.notsowimpyteacher.com/2019/07/i-just-got-teaching-job-now-what.html What to buy for your classroom: https://www.notsowimpyteacher.com/2019/07/i-just-got-teaching-job-now-what-should.html Teacher Facebook Groups: https://www.facebook.com/pg/NotSoWimpyTeacher/groups/?ref=page_internal


15 Jul 2019

Rank #7

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Practicing Classroom Procedures

Can you believe that we are already getting ready for back to school?! The beginning of the school year is tough. We have so many procedures to teach and that can get boring. I have some fun ways to practice routines and expectations that your kiddos will love! 1. Model What NOT to Do 2. Students Do the Teaching 3. Procedure Board Games 4. Find Someone who Free Printable Resources: https://www.notsowimpyteacher.com/2017/07/fun-ways-to-practice-classroom.html (At the end of the post)


29 Jul 2019

Rank #8

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Make Your Reading Lessons More Engaging

Are your students truly engaged in your whole group reading lessons? Are they excited to read and talk about text together? If not, no worries! I’ve got you covered with three of my favorite ways to make your reading lessons more engaging. Read Alouds PowerPoint Lessons Reading Interactive Notebooks Reading Units and Centers MEGA BUNDLE


9 Mar 2020

Rank #9

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10 Helping Your Dyslexic Students

Did you know that 1 out of every 5 students has dyslexia? Dyslexic students struggle with basic reading skills, writing, spelling and language. How can you identify a dyslexic student? How can you help your dyslexic students? In this episode, I had the I had the pleasure of interviewing Kelly Hoover. Kelly spent 20 years in the classroom (grades 1, 2 and 3) and now she is a reading therapist. Kelly is passionate about helping dyslexic students and has all kinds of practical advice for any teacher! https://www.ascendlearningcenter.com/ Overcoming Dyslexia:                                        https://amzn.to/2KTc7zz Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/NotSoWimpyTeacher/ Website: www.notsowimpyteacher.com


22 Apr 2019

Rank #10

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6 Things I Screwed Up When Teaching Writing

I was the worst writing teacher. It's embarrassing, but I am all about being real. In this episode, I am sharing six of the big mistakes I made in my early years of teaching writing and the changes that I eventually made. If you are struggling with teaching writing, you are NOT alone! There is light at the end of the tunnel. Free Guide: bit.ly/2JdnYaV Facebook Groups: https://www.facebook.com/pg/NotSoWimpyTeacher/groups


8 May 2019

Rank #11

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Improve Teacher and Staff Moral at Your School

What is teacher and staff morale like at your school? Is there a lot of positivity and teachers are happy to come to school? Or, is there a lot of negativity and frustration. Do teachers feel supported or do they feel like no one appreciates them? Sadly many teachers feel like morale is low at their school. There are so many things that we wish admin would do at our school to show that they trust us and appreciate us. But today, we are changing the conversation. Instead of talking about what we wish others would do, we are going to start talking about what WE can do to help to improve the morale at our school. In this episode, I share several simple ideas that you can implement! Secret gift exchange Stocking the staff lounge Start a social club Host a book club Write positive notes I'd love to hear about the ideas that you are coming up with. Let me know how you are going to improve morale at your school. Let's make teaching fun, my friends!


19 Nov 2019

Rank #12

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Why You NEED a Writing Workshop

How do you currently teach writing? Do you give prompts and projects? Do you have a center? Do you just do a little writing in social studies? If that's the case, I want you to hear all of the reasons that you really NEED to add a writing workshop to your routine. (Spoiler Alert: Your students will be far better writers!) Make sure that you listen until the end because I have a BIG announcement! Woot! Free Guide: Bit.ly/NotSoWimpyGuide Writing Units: bit.ly/NotSoWimpyWrite Not So Wimpy Writing Masterclass is coming on June 10th! Would you like to be notified when it is available? Use the link below: bit.ly/NotSoWimpyMC


20 May 2019

Rank #13

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06 Seven Ways to Save Money on Teachers Pay Teachers

I love that Teachers Pay Teachers has thousands of resources that save me some valuable time and keep my students engaged and learning. But we aren't raking in the cash, folks. Let me give you some ideas that can save you money on TpT!


25 Mar 2019

Rank #14

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Why in the world do you need math centers?

Math centers have always been my jam. I can't think of a better way to teach and practice math skills in a diverse classroom. No matter what curriculum you use, math centers and small guided groups will make differentiation so much easier! In this episode, I share five of my favorite reasons for having math center time in your classroom. Math Center Video Series: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLQFF0pyvywj7B-zUQzKv86ITBfCHTLwyW Math Practice Sites: https://xtramath.org https://www.zearn.org https://www.mobymax.com


10 May 2019

Rank #15

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Differentiating Vocabulary Instruction

Are you using the Not So Wimpy teacher vocabulary units and daily routine? Monday: Definitions & Sentences Tuesday: Synonyms & Antonyms Wednesday: Prefixes & Suffixes Thursday: Draw Pictures Friday: Games and Assessment In this episode, I quickly review this routine, but if you want to read more details, click HERE. This routine helps the majority of the students in our classroom to be successful learning new tier 2 words, but we always have a few that continue to struggle. We need to differentiate our vocabulary instruction for those learners. The good news is that it’s easy to differentiate our lessons to help those learners! In this episode, I share many suggestions. Hand Motions Print Teacher Guide Games (Click HERE for some free games!) Modified Assessments Technology Not So Wimpy teacher vocabulary units Free Vocabulary Games


3 Dec 2019

Rank #16

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Save Time Lesson Planning With Batching

There is no time! There is never any time! Do you ever feel this way when you are looking at you long to do list? You're not alone! Years ago I learned the skill of batching and it completely changed the way that I work on tasks. Batching is when you work on one specific task for a long chunk of time until it is complete rather than doing a little of everything with your time. Batching your lesson plans has many benefits. 1. Reduces your start up time. 2. Simplifies your daily to do list. 3. It improves your focus and flow time. 4. Gives you time to prep your necessary materials that go along with your lesson plans. 5. Gives you time to find activities to fill the holes. I used batching so that I could get four weeks of lesson plans done ahead of time. If you haven't been batching, then the original start up will take some time. But it is SO worth it! Week One: Plan four weeks of math and one week of reading, writing, science and social studies. (This is the toughest week!) Week Two: Plan four weeks of reading and one week of writing, science and social studies. Week Three: Plan four weeks of writing and one week of science and social studies. Week Four: Plan four weeks of science and social studies. Week Five: Plan four weeks of math. Week Six: Plan four weeks of reading. Week Seven: Plan four weeks of writing. Week Eight: Plan four weeks of science and social studies. And just continue this pattern so that you are always four weeks ahead on your planning and never having to plan for all subjects on a Sunday night.


10 Sep 2019

Rank #17

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How to Teach Writing Without Hating It

Does teaching writing feel overwhelming? Do you feel like you don't know how to teach writing or even how to fit it into your day? Do you flat out hate teaching writing? You aren't alone! Teaching writing is super challenging and can leave you feeling stressed. But, it doesn't have to be that way! I am going to break through five of the myths that make teachers think that they hate teaching writing. You are going to go from feeling overwhelmed and inadequate to feeling pumped up to get into the classroom and teach writing lessons that are effective! Masterclass: www.notsowimpywriting.com


10 Jun 2019

Rank #18

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04 How do you find time to teach writing?

Do you wish that you had more time to teach writing? I have some ideas! I hope I can help you to make time for a successful writing workshop.


11 Mar 2019

Rank #19

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Why I Took Grammar Out of Writing Workshop

Do you teach grammar during your writing workshop time? If I were to ask you what you are teaching in writing this week, would it be a list of grammar skills such as capitalization, punctuation, and parts of speech? Grammar and writing go hand in hand, right? And that is why you are wondering why I decided to stop teaching grammar during my writing workshop time. I can honestly say that having a dedicated grammar lesson and a dedicated writing lesson helped my students to improve in both areas. In this episode, I share three reasons why I removed most grammar lessons from my writing workshop time. 1. Students need dedicated grammar lessons. 2. There is more to writing than grammar. 3. I want to grow a love for writing. Resources Free Writing Lesson Guide: www.bit.ly/NotSoWimpyGuide My Grammar Routine: https://www.notsowimpyteacher.com/2017/08/my-ela-block-teaching-grammar-and.html


28 Oct 2019

Rank #20