Monday, March 6, 2017

Poetry Institute for Educators of Young Children

Poetry Institute for Educators of Young Children

Poetry readings and workshops, featuring Obama Inaugural poet Richard Blanco and Boston's Poet Laureate Danielle Legros Georges

Click here: For registraton information

Thursday, March 16, 2017
4:00 PM - 9:00 PM
The Poetry Institute for Educators of Young Children will begin with a reading and lecture by Richard Blanco, Inaugural poet for President Obama and Education Ambassador for the Academy of American Poets. Activities will include:
4:00 pm Registration and Coffee
4:30 pm Poetry reading and lecture with Richard Blanco
5:30 pm Introduction to Poetry as an Art Form  with Danielle Legros Georges, Boston Poet Laureate and Lesley professor
6:15 pm Supper and review of resources on poetry for young children
7:30 pm Workshops:
  • Poetry and the Disciplines  with Madeline Holzer, Educator in Residence of American Academy of Poets
  • Poetry and Nature  with Mary Ann Cappiello and Erika Thulin Dawes, editors of the Classroom Bookshelf and Lesley professors
  • Sound and Word Play  with Betty Bardige, author of Poems to Learn to Read By
8:30 pm Reflection on workshop poems and discussion of next steps for integrating poetry into teaching and learning
Register now.

Co-sponsored by Lesley University and the Academy of American Poets.
Richard Blanco
Richard Blanco, Inaugural Poet for President Obama and 2016 Lesley University Honorary Degree Recipient
University Hall Amphitheater - 2nd Floor
1815 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02140

Near Porter Square T stop.
Directions to campus.
Registration Required
Cost: $25, which includes a light supper and materials

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Primary Source Global Action for Social Justice Series Webinar

From Primary Source: Happy New Year! I hope all of you enjoyed pleasant holidays with friends and family.  I want to let you know that we have a webinar series beginning on January 18 and we welcome more teachers to participate.  Our Global Action for Social Justice series will includes sessions on human trafficking, the UN's sustainable development goals, and sports and human rights.  All details are below — please share with your teachers — they can sign up directly using the link at the bottom of the descriptions.  New for this year:  with participation in all three sessions (plus an assignment), teachers can earn 10 PDPs.

Global Action for Social Justice
3-part webinar series

DATES: January 18, February 15, and TBD 2017
TIME: 7:00 p.m. - 8:15 p.m. EST
PDPs: 10 PDPs for participation in full series and completion of assignment

Our three-part webinar series will introduce educators to global issues unfolding on many continents. This year we explore social justice tools and approaches that include the United Nation’s Global Goals for Sustainable Development, the international effort to eliminate human trafficking, and the global campaign to establish access to sports and play as a human right. Scholar experts will join the conversation to provide context for the issues. Classroom resources will also be shared.  Participants may register for one, two or all three sessions but PDPs are only provided for participation in all three.  Open to all K-12 educators.

Sports and the “Right to Play”: A Global Human Rights Issue
Wednesday, January 18th, 2017

Gender, disability, sexual identity, race and religion have each been used in various ways and places to exclude people from access to sports. Eli Wolff of Brown University will speak about sports and the “right to play” as a global human rights issue. 

Teaching the UN Sustainable Development Goals
Wednesday, February 15th, 2017

Led by a Primary Source staff member and K-12 teacher, this webinar provides an introduction to the key components and targets set by the international community to combat some of the world's greatest social, political, and environmental challenges and offers teaching strategies and resources to incorporate these 17 goals into the K-12 classroom.

Human Trafficking
March-April Date TBD

Hear from advocates, students and teachers involved in the 21st century “abolition” campaign to end all forms of coerced unfree labor and the traffic in human lives. Learn about the many avenues for informed action that are open to young people and the critical role that teachers can play in their classrooms and beyond.

Registration is free and open.  Go to to sign up.


Abby Detweiler
Director of Outreach & Program Operations
(617) 923-9933 ext. 120
Educating global citizens
Learn why we’re opening new windows on the world for K-12 educators and their students.

Summer History Course for teachers!

Boston folks!  This is a great course for teachers in Grades 3-12.

The Norman B. Leventhal Map Center at Boston Public Library is pleased to invite 3rd-12th grade teachers from around the country to apply to participate in our summer 2017 NEH Landmarks of American History and Culture teacher workshop: Mapping a New World: Places of Colonization and Conflict in 17th-Century New England.

Information about this opportunity
Participants will explore the history and landscape of 1600s New England, with an emphasis on the role of geography and place. This is an opportunity to engage deeply with the region by visiting and learning at major historical landmarks such as the site of Plymouth colony, the Mashantucket Pequot Museum and battlefields of the Pequot War, the city of Boston and its harbor islands with their deep connections to Native American history, and museums and libraries that together house collections and exhibitions that bring to life this complex story of land, power, identity, and community.

Teachers will engage with leading scholars and primary source materials, including period maps, letters, land deeds, and narratives that are grounded in their geographic location. These materials illuminate how the different ways and perspectives with which English settlers and multifaceted Native communities viewed the New England region shaped their relationships and interactions throughout the 1600s.

July 9 - 14, 2017 - National Participants

July 23 - 28, 2017 - Commuting Participants

Thursday, January 5, 2017

What Kind of Citizen: Educating Our Children for the Common Good with Joel Westheimer

 Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Center for Studies in Jewish Education   
9th Annual Teacher Forum
What Kind of Citizen:
Educating Our Children for the Common Good 
with Joel Westheimer
Sunday, March 5, 2017
2:00 - 5:00 p.m.

Brandeis University 
Hassenfeld Conference Center
415 South Street
Waltham, MA 02453

This event is free and open to the public but space is limited and registration is required. 

The Teacher Forum is co-sponsored by the Delet Alumni Network (DAN) and the Brandeis Education Program. 
  • How can our schools prepare students to become responsible, ethical and active citizens of a just, democratic society? 
  • How can teachers of all subjects teach young people to engage with the world around them and work to improve it?
In this interactive presentation and workshop 
Dr. Joel Westheimer details how teachers, principals, parents, students and school reformers can pursue meaningful ideals of democracy, 
social justice and civic community. 

Joel Westheimer
Joel Westheimer is University Research Chair in Democracy and Education at the Unive
rsity of Ottawa and education columnist for CBC Radio. He began his education career as a summer camp director and was a middle school teacher in the New York City Public School system. His newest book What Kind of Citizen: Educating Our Children for the Common Good was published in 2015.

Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Center for Studies in Jewish Education, Brandeis University, MS 049, 415 South Street, Waltham, MA 02454-9110

Monday, December 19, 2016

Summer Institutes about China, Japan and Korea for K-12 teachers

Summer institutes about China, Japan and Korea for K-12 teachers

Summer Institute

K-12 teachers are invited to the University of Washington in Seattle for week-long summer institutes about the history and culture of China, Japan and Korea. Dorm housing and travel stipends are provided to all accepted participants who reside outside the Seattle metropolitan area.

Monday, December 12, 2016

FUNDED Expeditions to the Arctic, British and Irish Isles, Canadian Maritimes, Iceland, the Galapagos, Antarctica

Grosvenor Teacher Fellow Program

Honoring Excellence in K-12 Geographic Education

Picture of a group of people on a ship.
Photograph by CT Ticknor
The Grosvenor Teacher Fellow (GTF) program is a professional development opportunity made possible by a partnership between Lindblad Expeditions and National Geographic Education. The program is named in honor of Gilbert M. Grosvenor, Chairman Emeritus National Geographic Society and Education Foundation Board. It gives current K–12 classroom teachers and informal educators from the 50 U.S. states, Canada, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico the opportunity to extend Grosvenor’s legacy of excellence in geographic education. Exemplary educators are recognized for their commitment to geographic education and given the opportunity to travel aboard the Lindblad-National Geographic fleet. Through this experience, they bring new geographic awareness into their learning environments and communities.

Fellows are an integral part of the National Geographic community, working to further students’ understanding of the planet and empower them to generate solutions for a healthier and more sustainable future. To help ensure that the next generation is armed with geographic knowledge and global awareness, Fellows take on a two-year leadership commitment to support educators with National Geographic. Throughout their commitment, Fellows may be asked to conduct webinars, participate in meet-ups, and serve as a mentor to other educators.

Please note: Beginning with the 2018 Grosvenor Teacher Fellow Program application, all applicants will be required to be National Geographic Certified Educators and members in good standing of their state’s Alliance for Geographic Education.


2017 Application

Applications must be received through our online system by December 31, 2016 at 11:59 pm Eastern. You can save your application and come back to it any time before the deadline. Applications will not be accepted by any other means.

Due to the high volume, we are not able to respond to individual questions. If you have any technical problems, please send an email to Incomplete applications will not be considered. 2017 Fellows will be contacted by phone in February 2017, and announced on the National Geographic Education website in March 2017.


2017 Program Highlights

Selected educators will travel aboard the ships National Geographic Explorer, National Geographic Endeavour II, and National Geographic Sea Lion on expeditions to regions including the Arctic, British and Irish Isles, Canadian Maritimes, Iceland, the Galapagos, Antarctica and more. While aboard, Fellows will share the importance of geographic literacy with fellow travelers, develop activities to bring back to their classrooms, and have an adventure of a lifetime. Prior to the expedition, all 2017 Grosvenor Teacher Fellows will travel to Washington, D.C. (March 23–26, 2017) with all expenses covered to participate in a pre-voyage workshop sponsored by Lindblad Expeditions and National Geographic.

The 2016 Class of Fellows  

Meet the 2016 Class of Grosvenor Teacher Fellows! Applications for the 2017 program will be available on November 16, 2016.
Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions  

Have questions about the program? Find the answers here!
Follow Along

Follow Along  

Read updates from fellows on our blog.
About Lindblad Expeditions

About Lindblad Expeditions  

Lindblad Expeditions has a long tradition of respectful tourism and exploration.

In Partnership With

In Collaboration With

How to Hold A Pencil

Teaching Kids Pencil Grasp

Pencil grasps can be a difficult concept for kids to master.  Pencil grasps require hand strength, motor planning and coordination, plus a little instruction along the way.  Give your kids an advantage when teaching them pencil grasp with these simple yet effective techniques.
Teach your kids how to hold a pencil properly with these simple tips that make writing easier for your kids!

1.Explain “stop” and “go” fingers- Make the analogy of a stop light to your child’s fingers when holding a pencil.   The “go” fingers (thumb, index, and middle) get to “go” for a ride on the pencil, while the “stop” fingers (ring finger and pinky) get tucked into the palm instead.

Teaching Kids Pencil Grasp
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2. Put a green dot on their “go” fingers and a red dot on the “stop” fingers-  Visual cues can be so helpful for kids so they can truly see what’s being explained to them.  Put a green dot on your child’s “go” fingers (thumb, index, and middle) where those fingers are supposed to hold the pencil.  Note- I put the green dot on the side pad of the middle finger because the pencil rests there rather than on the fingertip. 

Teaching Kids Pencil Grasp

3. Draw a line around the bottom of the pencil- Make a visual cue on the pencil by drawing a green ring around the part where the two colors meet). Have the child match the green dots on their “go” fingers to the green line on the pencil for correct positioning.
Teaching Kids Pencil Grasp
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4. Place a sticker on the pencil- Accentuate the visual cue on the pencil by wrapping a sticker just above the sharpened portion of the pencil  so the child can hold it in the correct position. If possible, use a green sticker to match the green “go” fingers.


5. Play the pencil pick up game- As with anything, practice makes perfect.  Practice pencil grasp with this fun game in order to keep your child’s interest.  Check out the video on how to play…..

6. Build hand strength through play activities- You cannot hold a pencil correctly without adequate hand strength.  So, work on building hand strength by PLAYING!  Do the monkey bars, climb on a playground, play tug-of-war, build something with Play Doh, etc… to increase hand strength so that your child will be able to hold the pencil properly.
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7. Broken crayon trick- Break a crayon in half so that only 3 fingers can grasp it, to improve pencil grasp. Find out more about this trick and the developmental grasp pattern of kids as they grow in this article.

Please don’t delay in teaching your child about pencil grasp.  Bad habits are easy to form and very difficult to break, especially in terms of handwriting.   So use these tips to teach your child the “write” way to hold a pencil before they get into poor habits!