VariQuest Blog

The VariQuest Visual and Kinesthetic Learning Tools Blog contains resources on classroom ideas, lesson plans, industry news, events, and offers throughout education.

Blog Feature

VariQuest Tools: Cutout Maker 1800 | Featured Topics: Student Engagement | VariQuest Tools: Cold Laminator 2510 | Featured Topics: Lessons and Activities

Interactive Bulletin Board: Tweet About It!

By: Margo Ensz
July 23rd, 2015

Bulletin boards are a classic staple of the K-12 classroom. Over the years, educators have spiced things up and made their bulletin boards interactive, so they are a dynamic part of visual and kinesthetic learning in addition to an anchor visual. One fun way to do this? Bring the hashtag into your classroom--make a tweet board! 

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Grade Level: Primary (PK-2) | Grade Level: Intermediate (3-6) | VariQuest Tools: Cutout Maker 1800 | Featured Topics: Student Engagement

5 Interactive Bulletin Boards to End the Year!

By: Margo Ensz
June 3rd, 2015

The beginning and end of the school year is often a time of reflction. We have compiled five writing activities that can double as the ultimate classroom display - the bulletin board!

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How to Write a Grant eBook

How to Write a Grant eBook

This helpful guide includes an explanation of the grant process, including a checklist (with samples!), and useful links and resources to find funding!

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Featured Topics: Classroom Celebrations/Holidays | Featured Topics: Student Engagement

Student Recognition Made Easy

By: Geena Maharaj
May 29th, 2015

Students aren’t too different from rats. They may not be scurrying around with long tails trailing behind, nor are they considered deadly pests. But as psychologist BF Skinner proved, humans and rats find commonality in positive reinforcement. As Skinner rewarded his test rats with food for doing the perceived “right thing,” they continued on the right path. As teachers recognize positive student behavior, students are galvanized to continue their positive behavior.

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Featured Topics: Industry News and Trends | Featured Topics: Student Engagement | Academic Subject: Interdisciplinary | Featured Topics: Professional Development

The Importance of Kinesthetic Learning

By: Geena Maharaj
May 13th, 2015

Imagine if educators were required by law to hand out straitjackets to students before school started. There's no filibuster long enough that could save any lawmaker from the angry mob of parents and teachers that would follow. But where's the public outcry when that immobilizing jacket is invisible? Students' ears are constantly being fed with information, and their eyes are getting their fill, too. But without the use of kinesthetic tactics in teaching, retention rates among students plummet.

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Featured Topics: Character Education | VariQuest Tools: Design Center Software | VariQuest Tools: Perfecta 2400 | VariQuest Tools: Poster Maker 3600 | VariQuest Tools: Awards Maker 400 | Featured Topics: Student Engagement | VariQuest Tools: Cold Laminator 2510

Is PBIS Still Relevant?

By: Margo Ensz
April 14th, 2015

“One of the foremost advances in school-wide discipline is the emphasis on school-wide systems of support that include proactive strategies for defining, teaching, and supporting appropriate student behaviors to create positive school environments.” (source)

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Academic Subject: STEM | Featured Topics: Industry News and Trends | Featured Topics: Differentiated Instruction | Featured Topics: Student Engagement

Makerspaces: High and Low Tech

By: Geena Maharaj
April 9th, 2015

If you've been keeping up on education trends lately, chances are you’re familiar with the recent emphasis on doing, creating, crafting, constructing, designing, building…essentially, making! From using laser cutters to building a house of LEGO® bricks, the goal is to make. The importance of this multidisciplinary hands-on learning has been sweeping the nation, one makerspace at a time.

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Featured Topics: Differentiated Instruction | Featured Topics: Student Engagement

Differentiated, Personalized, Individualized: What's the Difference?

By: Margo Ensz
March 4th, 2015

The education community has an increasingly diverse and vocal channel for discussing best practices, teaching and learning styles, and other hot topics and buzz words. These concepts can quickly become muddled and confusing if not properly defined and discussed. For example, differentiated, individualized, and personalized learning sound like they could be synonymous and interchangeable. However, there are clear distinctions between them. Let's start with differentiated instruction and personalized learning:

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Featured Topics: Character Education | Featured Topics: Student Engagement | Academic Subject: Interdisciplinary | Featured Topics: Templates for FREE download

5 Colorful Classroom Management Posters

By: Margo Ensz
February 25th, 2015

What is your classroom identity? What do teachers and staff expect of students? What do students expect when they walk in the classroom? Classroom management is important for every teacher, regardless of subject and grade level. Teachers want to spend their time teaching, so an effective classroom management strategy can help minimize disruptions. 

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Featured Topics: Differentiated Instruction | Featured Topics: Student Engagement | Featured Topics: Professional Development

3 Visual Tools for the Dyslexic Student

By: Margo Ensz
January 12th, 2015

Students with dyslexia are highly visual learners who benefit from multi-sensory learning environments. Because dyslexic students have a dominant right brain, it takes strategic effort and care to engage the left side of the brain. Engaging multiple sensory experiences into instruction will then engage multiple areas of the brain. This helps dyslexic students make connections, strenghthen their left brain, and better retain information. (source) Students with dyslexia tend to be more visual in learning, therefore, visual tools are vital to their sucess in grasping concepts and problem solving. Here are three visual tools that can help students with dyslexia make connections, retain information, and deepen learning: 

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Featured Topics: Industry News and Trends | Featured Topics: Student Engagement

Maximizing Student Achievement with Classroom Environment

By: Margo Ensz
November 17th, 2014

"For students to learn to their full potential, the classroom environment must be of minimum structural quality and contain cues signaling that all students are valued learners."

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