Before going any further, you should know that I write, and have been writing, my own curriculum for the classroom for over 30 years now. I haven’t ever used a store bought curriculum but not because I am opposed to using one but because I have always loved the challenge of writing my own. But I also enjoy supplementing my own ideas and curriculum with this one resource…
You got it! Scholastic classroom magazines (which I have always called “weekly readers”). I use two different types for my classroom. For all of my students (Preschool and PreK), I love “My Big World” which you can view a sample of the magazine here. AND FYI: Scholastic is running a contest right now that you might like to check out. I am not associated with the contest but I have shared the details on how to enter their contest at the end of this post.
For my oldest students (PreK and Junior K), I love “Let’s Find Out” which you can view a sample of the magazine here.
I have been using Scholastic children’s magazines in my classroom since I started teaching over 30 years now and each year, the magazine just keep getting better. Beautiful photos, fabulous topics, and a wonderful layout for discussion with my students. And just in case you are wondering – this is not a sponsored post.
Integrating Scholastic’s Magazines into the Classroom
Integrating Scholastic’s magazines into the classroom is probably one of the easiest things I do. The first reason is because the topics are almost always related to current seasons, events, and other topics that my students are already interested in.
The second reason is because the magazines promote discussion that naturally lead us to continue that discussion through play and exploration. Did I say that I love these magazines yet? Well I do so just in case you missed that point, I want to say it again. I love these magazines!
Introducing the Magazine
Introducing the magazine to our students is fairly routine in that we usually sit on the floor and start at the beginning. We discuss what the children see on the cover and any stories that they may to want to add.
We go to the middle of the booklet and walk our way through the framed photos on the page, taking both a picture walk and discussing the words in each frame as we go along. Each photo invites the children to tell their own stories of similar experiences so I don’t rush through the frames.
The last page of the magazine is a simple activity page that my students enjoy doing. We usually walk through the activity together but sometimes the children are way ahead of me and complete the page before I even get started! It may be completed in a way that makes sense to them but it is still completed and adds to the information we have explored through the discussion process. The activity on “Let’s Find Out” will be a little more challenging than “My Big World.”
Expanding through the classroom
Every Scholastic’s Children’s Magazine is easy to expand on throughout the classroom through play, creativity, and exploration. For example, we can expand the “Orange Autumn” magazine on our light table examining and tracing/rubbing orange leaves…
We can discover orange autumn by weighing, measuring, and opening up a pumpkin as part of our science exploration…
We can add orange sand to promote writing skills in the salt/sand writing box…
The list of things that our magazines inspire us to do is endless!
I always enjoy designing my own curriculum based on my student’s development, interests, and experiences I want to provide. I love how Scholastic’s magazines gives me a fabulous resource to share with my students and yet still allows room for us to expand the concepts in a way that is hands on and interesting to us.
PLUS it goes home to parents which extends our conversation about Orange Autumn at home too!
SMART TEACHING TIPS CONTEST
You could win a $200 gift card from the Scholastic Teacher Store!
Scholastic loves #SmartTeachingTips. Share yours for how you use Scholastic magazines creatively in your classroom. Tell us about it on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, or Instagram, and include a photo or video. Be sure to use #SmartTeachingTips.
Three winners will be chosen based on outstanding creativity. Each winner will receive a $200 gift card to the Scholastic Teacher store. We’re excited to see your ideas! Follow Scholastic Teachers on social media to learn more.
Links to Grow On!
Scholastic’s Let’s Find Out – K Version
Scholastic’s My Big World – Preschool/PreK Version
Elephant ToothPaste : More with Weekly Readers
Another Look at Scholastic’s My Big World