About Heather Painter

Heather Painter taught art and third grade at KIPP Delta in Helena, Arkansas and is currently researching education policy as a Congress-Bundestag Youth Exchange for Young Professionals fellow in Germany. She enjoys reading, learning new things, experiencing foreign cultures, and petting strangers' dogs. Email her at painterhs74@gmail.com.

Enter Your School in PledgeCents’ Pledge2Win Contest

Enter PledgeCents' Pledge2Win Contest

We are really sorry you didn’t win the Power Ball.

At this time last year, I didn’t have a winning lottery ticket either, but I was determined to create a unique rewards called the “School Store,” which allowed my students to purchase fun and useful school supplies, while honing their math and budgeting skills. PledgeCents helped me open the School Store, and they can help you fund projects for your classroom too with their new contest Pledge2Win.

5 New Year’s Resolutions for the Classroom

New year's resolutions for teachers

The cookies are nearly gone, regular old music is playing on the radio again, and Christmas trees are festooning front lawns instead of living rooms. These are the sad signs that winter break is coming to an end, but don’t worry, teachers: a new year means new opportunities. Check out five New Year’s resolutions that will help you and your students make the most of 2016.

Online Resources for Indoor Recess

2 Online Resources Perfect for Indoor Recess

According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, children need 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity daily, but less than half of U.S. students are meeting this recommended guideline. This can be hard in winter—but hopefully the resources below will help keep you and your kids moving during recess no matter what the weather is outside!

7 Holiday Gifts for Students That Won’t Break the Bank

7 Holiday Gifts for Students That Won’t Break the Bank

Are you looking forward to a well-deserved few weeks off to relax, sing holiday songs, eat delicious cookies, and unwind? We hear you, but first things first: Pinterest! Yes, we’re talking about scouring everyone’s favorite digital scrapbook for cute student gifts that won’t break the bank. Here are seven easy, cheap, and fun holiday gift ideas for teachers to give to their students.


Grab that laminator, and design a bookmark with a picture of your class, an inspirational quote about reading, or featured student artwork. Print it out double-sided with four or five per page and, voila, no more dogged-eared pages in your classroom library books!

A Thank You Message to Teachers

Thank you message for teachers

Teachers, this Thanksgiving, we’re reflecting on how thankful the world is to have people like you in it.

For all of the mornings you wake up early, and the nights you stay up late.

For the lessons you plan long after the school day has ended, the materials you carefully get together on your weekends, and pay for with your own money, without giving it a second thought.

For the smiles you share and hands you hold, the dreams you help unfold.

If A Teacher Wrote Alanis Morissette’s “Ironic”

If a Teacher Wrote Alanis Morissette's "Ironic"

Last week singer Alanis Morissette performed a revamped version of her 90’s hit “Ironic” with James Corden on the Late Late Show, which includes modern references to Amazon, Netflix, Twitter, and Tinder.

Inspired by Morissette, we thought we would share our own rendition of “Ironic”–including the aspects of teaching that simultaneously drive us crazy and make us smile. Enjoy!

A student sends you a Facebook request

That you have to explain why you cannot accept

You remembered your lunch on that one single day

By |November 18th, 2015|General Pop|0 Comments|

7 Activities for Giving Thanks in the Classroom

7 Activities for Giving Thanks in the Classroom

It is not happy people who are thankful. It is thankful people who are happy. –Unknown

While showing gratitude is something we strive for all year long, Thanksgiving provides a special reminder and opportunity for teachers. Below are seven ideas for giving thanks with your students this Thanksgiving.

1. Thanksgiving décor: Create a bulletin board encouraging students to give thanks. One option is to ask students to write down what they are thankful for on a leaf and collect them all together for display. You could also print out blank thank-you cards, and encourage students to write a message to someone they are thankful for.

4 Ways to Get Back on Track When Your Class Is Talking Over You

What to Do When Your Class Is Talking Over You

Imagine: You have spent several precious hours perfecting what you consider to be a captivating lesson plan for your students. Your handouts and supplies are organized. You may even have practiced in your head one final time in the car on your way to school. It’s show time—except when you open your mouth to deliver your gripping introduction, your class starts talking over you.

Don’t panic! Most of us have been there right along with you, but this situation does raise an important question: What do I do when my class is talking over me?