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The Alabama Best Practices Center works to help teachers and administrators
develop the competence, commitment, and courage to do whatever it takes
to improve student learning.



Teachers at Columbia Elementary “Demonstrate” SEL Skills to Their Students Every Friday Morning – Rain or Shine!

When Columbia Elementary teachers Karen Jump and Lauren Hester heard the challenge to lift their students’ spirits every Friday, they soon came up with a brainstorm. “We made posters with inspiring messages,” writes Jump, “then sent out an email to the school asking for teachers and staff members who wanted to participate. Each Friday morning, we stand outside, welcoming students to school.” Simple? Yes. Impactful? Very!

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How We Can Teach Our Students to Become Design Thinkers

How can educators better engage students so they see the relevance in what they’re learning – and the learning sticks? Cognitive scientist and former classroom teacher Lindsay Portnoy argues that Design Thinking strategies (found in engineering, software development and many other fields) are a big part of the answer. Cathy Gassenheimer reviews Portnoy’s new book.

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