Room 241: A Blog by
Concordia
University-
Portland

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Early Childhood and Elementary (Grades: PreK-5)

A happy student in circle time

The Emotions of Learning: Q&A with Marc Brackett, PhD

By Jennifer Gunn February 6, 2019

Social-emotional and trauma-informed learning and teaching are at the forefront of education research and study today. The National Survey of Children’s Health (NSCH) reports that nearly 50 percent of the children in the U.S. have experienced “at least one or more types of serious childhood trauma.” Therefore, ignoring emotions in the classroom can absolutely pose… Read More

How many five-paragraph essays do students write in their school career? A lot. How many standardized tests require an essay? Most of them. How many essays will students need to write after college? Eh, probably not that many. Essays have their function, but they’re certainly not the only academically rigorous form of writing, nor are… Read More

Exploring Tinkergarten’s Learning Model

By Jennifer Gunn December 10, 2018

The outdoor education movement gets children outside to experience hands-on learning in nature. Some organizations are taking this approach to the next level. One innovative example is Tinkergarten, which offers outdoor classes and activities that incorporate play-based learning. Available to children and families in 47 states, Tinkergarten’s activities are designed to “help kids develop a host of important capabilities, including empathy,… Read More

In order for students to be successful in school, they first have to be in school. Seems logical, right? But for millions of students in the U.S., attendance is a barrier to success with lifelong consequences. Here’s a look at how chronic absenteeism impacts learning, and how schools can begin to turn the tide. Measuring… Read More

It’s easy to see the potential in young learners, but recognizing what they can already contribute and encouraging their growth requires a dedicated advocate with passion and expertise. Meet Tina Lageson, EdD, a kindergarten teacher at Glencoe Elementary School in Portland, Oregon. She’s a three-peat alum of Concordia University-Portland, having earned her BS in Early Childhood… Read More

The Importance of Play-Based Learning

By The Room 241 Team September 27, 2018

The No Child Left Behind movement seemed to discount the importance of play-based learning in favor of more explicit instruction and testing in the lower grades. But researchers and educators agree that play is a critical part of childhood learning that should not be sidelined. Here’s a look at the latest research on the importance… Read More

Why Kids and Teens Need Diverse Books and Our Recommended Reads

By The Room 241 Team September 8, 2018

Think back to your middle or high school English class and the books you read. Great Gatsby? Lord of the Flies? Maybe 1984 or Les Misérables? While those are all important works, the literary canon has long been dominated by white authors, white perspectives, white characters — and those voices are often male. There are so… Read More

If you’re passionate about child development and enjoy working with our youngest students, you might be curious about Concordia’s MEd in Curriculum & Instruction: Early Childhood Education. To give you a better sense of what this specific program entails, we thought it would be helpful to examine one of the courses from it. So we… Read More

Back-to-School Icebreakers for Every Grade

By The Room 241 Team August 3, 2018

Tired of the name game and classroom bingo? Here are some awesome classroom icebreakers sure to get your students excited about each other, and their new class! Elementary school activities Deserted Island Share-Out Seat students in a circle. Tell the class to imagine that they’re stuck on a deserted island. To make it visual, project… Read More

The start of the school year can trigger some serious anxiety for students — and teachers. Through the use of Social Emotional Learning (SEL) strategies, educators can help students cope with back-to-school anxiety to truly thrive in class. Here’s how to recognize the signs of student distress and ways to guide students through anxiety. And,… Read More

Get Outside! The Outdoor Education Movement Takes Root

By Jennifer Gunn June 28, 2018

Hand a toddler an iPhone, and chances are that child knows precisely what to do with it. Increasing screen time, over-testing in schools, and a national rise in students medicated for attention issues have contributed to the outdoor education movement. This movement gets students out of their seats and into nature. The call for an… Read More

Editor’s note: This article was originally published on Concordia University-Portland’s main website. Expectations were high as the eagerly awaited 3toPhD® facility opened its doors this past August. After years of planning, the innovative new educational model had the eyes – and hopes – of a whole community resting on it. So, how is it going? Who… Read More

Free Downloads Your Students Will Love for D.E.A.R. Day

By Meaghan Maldonado, MEd April 10, 2018

Between required curriculum and mandated testing, it can often feel like there aren’t many opportunities to fit in enriching, fundamental activities like reading. However, the “Drop Everything and Read,” (or D.E.A.R.) movement hopes to encourage students, families, and educators to immerse themselves in reading. D.E.A.R. was inspired by Beverly Cleary (who wrote about the concept… Read More

When your purpose becomes your passion, you’re able to accomplish immeasurable goals and enjoy the work you do every single day. Our latest Featured Cavalier Kayvonna Stigall exemplifies this through and through. Find out more about this Michigan-based Autism Behavioral Technician in our Q&A below. What inspired you to become an educator? I have had… Read More

Mindfulness Activities for the Elementary Classroom

By The Room 241 Team February 14, 2018

How do you get a classroom full of energetic little kids to practice stillness? Believe it or not, it’s possible. Mindfulness isn’t new, but it’s undoubtedly become a popular classroom movement in recent years. What is it? According to Psychology Today, “mindfulness is a state of active, open attention on the present.” This can happen… Read More