Education Resources Blog

VariQuest Blog

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

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Parental Involvement | VariQuest Tools: Design Center Software | VariQuest Tools: Cutout Maker 1800 | Featured Topics: Classroom Celebrations/Holidays | Featured Topics: Student Engagement | Featured Topics: Lessons and Activities | student achievement | VariQuest Tools: Motiva 400 | VariQuest Tools: Perfecta 2400STP | VariQuest Tools: Perfecta 3600STP

[Video] 4 End-of-Year Projects from The Curriculum Corner

By: VariQuest Visual & Kinesthetic Learning Tools
May 8th, 2019

It's hard to believe - but we're already coming up to the end of the school year! As you prepare students for their final weeks in your classroom, you may be thinking about how this year's class can "leave a legacy" for next year's students, or maybe you're trying to come up with activities to keep their minds sharp during the summer months to come. We've brought in reinforcements to help with both of those things! With 21st Century Skills in mind, Jill and Cathy from The Curriculum Corner share 4 " tips" with us around the 4 Cs - critical thinking, creativity, collaboration, and communication - for wrapping up end-of-year with the help of the VariQuest Motiva™, Cutout Maker, and Perfecta® tools! 

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VariQuest Tools: Design Center Software | VariQuest Tools: Cutout Maker 1800 | student achievement | VariQuest Tools: Motiva 400 | VariQuest Tools: Perfecta 2400STP | VariQuest Tools: Perfecta 3600STP

4 Test-Taking Tips from The Curriculum Corner

By: VariQuest Visual & Kinesthetic Learning Tools
April 11th, 2019

When testing season is upon your classroom, it makes for a very anxious time. Not only are students worried about the disruption to their routine, where multiple-choice questions and long periods of quiet and sitting-still take over the school day, but many teachers struggle with the entire process as they throw all their energy into easing students' fears to enable success. With over 30 years of teaching experience between them, we reached out to Jill and Cathy of The Curriculum Corner to gather some tips for test-taking that align with 21st Century Skills for learning to invoke the "4 Cs" of creativity, collaboration, communication and critical thinking. With the help of the VariQuest tools, they'll show you how to prepare yourselves and your students for a successful testing environment. Check out their ideas in this video, download our free testing poster, then try things out for yourself! (And don't forget to like the VariQuest Facebook Page to stay tuned for more tips!)

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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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Student Engagement | Featured Topics: Student Engagement | student achievement

How to Analyze Student Data and Drive Growth

By: Carman Le
January 10th, 2019

Data, data, data! Through the halls of our schools, that’s what teachers are talking about - and we're using it to drive instruction. The question is, are we using it correctly? The "big data movement" has had some negative side effects, involving testing phobia among students and incredible stress among staff - but if you know how to use the data correctly, both educators and students can find their way to a virtual paradise of growth. It doesn’t matter what your district or school uses for data purposes. Many schools across the country are using the MAP (Measures of Academic Progress) test, running records through Fountas and Pinnell, or maybe even basic common assessments. The first thing we all need to wrap our brains around is the difference between formative and summative assessments...

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Differentiated Instruction | Professional Development | Recognition | Parental Involvement | Featured Topics: Student Engagement | Featured Topics: Professional Development | student achievement

Professional Development Web Video Series: Glow and Grow

By: VariQuest Visual & Kinesthetic Learning Tools
August 16th, 2018

Register Now for Glow and Grow ! A Professional Development Web Series Delivered to Your Inbox featuring Dr. Melissa Hughes, Expert on Whole Brain Teaching & Learning  and Carman Le, MAT, Education Development Specialist at VariQuest Live Now! Student Engagement. Inclusivity. Critical Thinking. Parental Involvement. Student Achievement. Recognition. These are the basic needs of schools nationwide. In this 6-part professional development web series developed by VariQuest, you'll receive one ~10 minute video each week in your inbox, which will start with Dr. Melissa Hughes, expert on Whole Brain Teaching & Learning, addressing one of these 6 needs and how brain function processes affect what we as educators are trying to do in our schools, then hear from Carman Le, Education Development Specialist at VariQuest, on how you can implement this neurological research in your classroom and school building through hands-on activities, teaching methods, or staff training. Here's what you can expect each week...

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Differentiated Instruction | Professional Development | Featured Topics: Professional Development | student achievement

Professional Development Webinar: Growth vs Fixed Mindset

By: VariQuest Visual & Kinesthetic Learning Tools
June 28th, 2018

featuring Dr. Melissa Hughes, Expert on Whole Brain Teaching & Learning Tuesday, July 24th at 10:00am CT We often think of student success in terms of ability and skill acquisition, but recent research tells us that’s only part of it. A student’s mindset is a powerful driver for motivation to learn, resilience with challenges, and developing a love for learning. Join us as Dr. Melissa Hughes, expert on whole brain teaching and learning, leads a free professional development webinar on how mindsets develop and how they impact student achievement - to improve engagement and achievement in your classrooms! Presented by Dr. Melissa Hughes, we'll be exploring neuroscientific findings and offer tangible strategies for parents and teachers to effectively nurture a growth mindset. We hope you can attend this free professional development webinar event hosted by VariQuest!

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Career & Technology Education (CTE) | Student Engagement | Grade Level: Secondary (7-12) | student achievement

[Playbook] Building a Career and Technical Education Program for the 21st Century

By: VariQuest Visual & Kinesthetic Learning Tools
November 30th, 2017

20, 15, even 10 years ago - when you thought about Career and Technical Education (CTE), you would picture a wood shop or auto mechanics class at a high school. But things have changed, and CTE isn't your dad's trade training anymore. Career & Technical Education Programs built for the 21st Century look drastically different - with schools building skill-development for many real-world jobs such as engineering, graphic design, teaching, business management, and so much more. The goal is achieving what schools have always worked towards - preparing students for college or careers - but this broader spectrum is geared towards a new kind of learner.

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Career & Technology Education (CTE) | Student Engagement | Grade Level: Secondary (7-12) | student achievement

[Checklist] 6 Steps Toward a 21st Century Learning Environment

By: VariQuest Visual & Kinesthetic Learning Tools
November 16th, 2017

Despite being 18 years into the new millennium, we hear a lot about "21st Century Learning Environments" these days, as schools are struggling to adapt to meet the needs of a new kind of learner - one who is constantly immersed in technology, and thus needs engaging, hands-on activities to feel connected to the real-life, real-world. With this in mind, we've created a 6-step checklist to help you assess building new, or enhancing your current CTE program, based on tactics our customers have implemented, as proof these techniques really work. For example... 

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Student Engagement | VariQuest Tools: Perfecta 2400 | VariQuest Tools: Cutout Maker 1800 | student achievement

Promoting Meaningful Dialogue in Classroom Discussions

By: Melissa Hughes, Ph.D.
January 20th, 2017

Think about the discussions that happen in your classroom.  Are they frequent? Do all students participate or are they monopolized by a handful of students?  Do you use discussion to merely check understanding or do you engage students into purposeful conversations to develop thinking? 

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Differentiated Instruction | Student Engagement | Featured Topics: Lessons and Activities | Project-based Learning | student achievement

VariQuest Opinion Writing Unit for Intermediate Classrooms

By: Geena Maharaj
August 2nd, 2016

We're at it again, and just in time for the start of the 2016-17 school year! In partnership with The Curriculum Corner, VariQuest® brings you the Opinion Writing Unit for Intermediate Classrooms.

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Lessons/Activities/Templates | Student Engagement | Featured Topics: Templates for FREE download | Project-based Learning | student achievement

Get Hands-On in VariQuest's Punctuation Writing Resource

By: Geena Maharaj
July 10th, 2016

    Q: What do you get when you cross a writing-intensive workshop with visual and kinesthetic learning? A: VariQuest's & The Curriculum Corner's Punctuation Writing Unit     In conjunction with The Curriculum Corner, VariQuest Visual & Kinesthetic Learning Tools has developed a punctuation unit of study focused on primary classrooms. Punctuation is a unit that should be taught within the context of real writing, and can be very effective when presented within the framework of a workshop model. However, more hands-on activities that accompany direct instruction can certainly help to increase student engagement and retention for young learners.

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