Listen & subscribe to our Fresh Ideas for Teaching podcast where we spotlight tips and tricks from leading K-12 educators and authors. This podcast is presented by Savvas Learning Company. Listen to the latest featured episodes below and subscribe to our email newsletter to get notified on new podcasts & blogs!



Recent Episodes:

Keepin’ Science Real Part 3: Motivating Students with Science Stories

Stories can be a powerful way to connect with learners. Integrating stories into your instruction may also get students thinking about a science topic in a different way. I recently got a chance to talk with Dr. Jesse Wilcox who is an advocate of using stories in the science classroom to capture students’ attention and help them better focus on a particular lesson. In the episode, Dr. Wilcox shares a few interesting science stories and how educators can use compelling stories to not only motivate their students but also keep their own teaching craft fresh and exciting.

Do Students Really Understand the Math Concept?

How can we be sure students understand the math concepts we are teaching, even when they have the right answer? When students can demonstrate understanding, they are better able to transfer and apply their knowledge. In this episode of our Fresh Ideas for Teaching podcast, we asked Marian Small, an internationally renowned mathematics educator, author, and professional learning consultant, “What Does Math Understanding Look Like?”

Assessments 101 – Understanding the Relationship Between Assessments and Learning

Assessments can sometimes be scary for both students and educators. But why is assessing students so hard? What can we as educators do to improve our understanding of the role of assessments in learning? I got a chance to talk with Shirley Li, a Senior Learning Scientist/Psychometrician, and Tavy Wells Chen, a Senior Software Product Manager focused on Assessments, for an essential Assessments 101 discussion. In the podcast we unpack words like screener, diagnostic, norming, and scaling to help educators better understand the relationship between assessments and learning.

The Rise of the K-12 LMS and How it’s Facilitating Teaching and Learning

K-12 Learning Management Systems (LMS) are pushing the boundaries of what educators can achieve in the classroom. We got a chance to talk with Todd Cofer, Sr. Platform Manager at Savvas Learning, to discuss the evolution of the K-12 LMS, how it facilitated learning during the pandemic, and what features and tools educators can take advantage of to maximize their instruction.


Rich Math Tasks for the Classroom

Listen to math authors/experts Francis (Skip Fennell), Karen Karp, and Beth Kobett as they discuss how math educators can challenge their students to go deeper into math encouraging them to reason, discuss, problem-solve, explore, justify, monitor their own thinking, and connect the mathematics they know to new situations.


Keepin’ Science Real Part 2: Time for Phenomena

Anchoring phenomena can be a powerful way to focus students on the “big picture” for a particular lesson. Join Dr. Shelley Forsythe, Associate Chair of the Department of Curriculum and Instruction at Texas State University, for an in-depth discussion on Phenomena-based instruction.


Tips for Engaging Readers and Writers in K-12 Classrooms

Keeping students engaged in learning is one of the most important and difficult tasks a teacher faces. Join literacy expert/author Kelly Gallagher for a discussion on why students aren’t engaged, the implications and impact that has on students and teachers, and what sort of things we can do to keep students engaged in learning.


Keepin’ Science Real Part 1: STEM it Up!

STEM Fairs are an amazing way to keep your students engaged and excited. Join Dr. Heather Domjan, Associate Professor at the University of Houston and the Executive Director of the Science and Engineering Fair of Houston, as she shares her passion for STEM Literacy, her experience in STEM Education, and provides tips on starting a STEM fair in your school district.


Past Episodes:

Practical Tips for Using Authentic Resources in the World Language Classroom Part 3

What are some of the first steps we can take to be successful in using authentic resources in the world language classroom? In the final Part 3 of the series Rich Sayers and Sarah Diczok-Vajtay provide suggestions for what to do after students have worked with the authentic resource.

Practical Tips for Using Authentic Resources in the World Language Classroom Part 2

In Part 2 of this three-part series Rich Sayers and Sarah Diczok-Vajtay dig deeper and look at how to best support students as they interact with the authentic resources.

Practical Tips for Using Authentic Resources in the World Language Classroom Part 1

What are some of the first steps we can take to be successful in using authentic resources in the world language classroom? Part 1 of this three-part series explores practical tips to get our students ready. Join Autentico author Rich Sayers and World Languages Editor Sarah Diczok-Vajtay for this special series on authentic resources.

Building on the Strengths Multilingual Learners Bring to Their Learning: SIOP® Sessions Part 4

Join Dr. Katie Toppel as she chats with SIOP authors Dr. Jana Echevarría, Dr. MaryEllen Vogt, and Dr. Deborah Short focusing on techniques educators can employ with multilingual learners to get to know them better, value their home language, connect to their lived experiences, build on the strengths they bring to the classroom, and maintain high standards while providing essential support.

Teaching Techniques to Foster Academic Language Development for Multilingual Learners – SIOP® Sessions Part 3

Join Dr. Katie Toppel as she chats with SIOP authors Dr. Jana Echevarría, Dr. MaryEllen Vogt, and Dr. Deborah Short focusing on teaching techniques to support academic language development, student learning strategies, and purposeful uses of Translanguaging.

Meeting the Unique Learning Needs of Multilingual Learners – SIOP® Sessions Part 2

Join Dr. Katie Toppel as she chats with SIOP authors Dr. Jana Echevarría, Dr. MaryEllen Vogt, and Dr. Deborah Short to discuss ways to collaboratively meet students where they are and build on the assets that they bring to new learning.

Essentials for Supporting Multilingual Learners – SIOP Sessions Part 1

How can we better support multilingual learners in PreK-12 classrooms? Join Dr. Katie Toppel as she chats with SIOP authors Dr. Jana Echevarría, Dr. MaryEllen Vogt, and Dr. Deborah Short to uncover a variety of essential strategies.

Top Trends K-12 Leaders Can’t Afford to Ignore

The pandemic has changed how students learn, teachers teach, and administrators lead. In this episode, we dive into 5 key educational trends that, moving forward, K-12 educators can’t afford to ignore. Join Heidi Bruhn, VP of Product Management & Marketing for K-12 Math, and Tom Hamilton, VP of Product Development at Savvas Learning for this special discussion.

What is Systematic & Explicit Instruction? A Conversation with Dr. Freddy Hiebert

Literacy author and thought leader, Dr. Elfrieda “Freddy” Hiebert, shares insight around the science of reading and the need for systematic and explicit instruction.

Addressing Unfinished Learning in the Mathematics Classroom

Math author and thought leader, Dr. Randall Charles, shares some practical ways mathematics educators can address unfinished learning.

How Can Teachers Communicate What They Value Most To Their Students?

Literacy author expert and teacher educator Dr. Judy Wallis shares her thoughts on what really matters in literacy instruction, communicating what we value to students, guiding students along the path towards independence and self-determination, and truly taking time to give ourselves grace during this unprecedented time in our society and in education.

Breaking the Cycle of Low Achievement and Low Motivation

Follow our Learning to Read: What Really Matters series and listen in on our conversation with educational literacy leader Dr. P. David Pearson as he shares great insight about the “virtuous” cycle of knowledge begetting comprehension begetting learning as a way to break the vicious cycle of low achievement and low motivation.

Anyone Out There? Distance Learning Tips When Teaching Into the Void

Listen to our conversation with Literacy Specialist Karen Miller as we discuss ideas for novel brain re-energizers that use physical movement to prepare your students for their next learning activity.

Why the Future of Literacy is Multimodal

Follow our Learning to Read: What Really Matters series and listen in on our first conversation with educational leader Dr. Frank Serafini as he shares his perspective on multimodal literacy, teacher growth/appreciation, and the future of teaching.

Strengthening Writing and Media Literacy Instruction During Distance Learning

Join us as we talk with Dr. Ernest Morrell, Coyle Professor of Literacy Education at the University of Notre Dame, who shares some tips for strengthening writing and media literacy instruction in a distance or hybrid learning environment.

A Challenge or an Opportunity? The Pivot in K-12 Education

We talk with Dr. Marla Sheppard, Deputy Superintendent of Kansas City Public Schools, who sees this moment in K-12 education as an opportunity to reevaluate and reimagine the way things have always been done.

Connecting and Collaborating in the New Normal

Literacy specialist Karen Miller discusses the amazing resilience of educators and offers tips for recalibrating this summer before going back to school.

Engaging All Students With Culturally Relevant Instruction

In this podcast, Dr. Ernest Morrell shares his insight as to why students are not engaged and how we can engage them. Centered around increased representation, increased cultural understanding, and student voice, culturally relevant instruction offers academic equity by allowing all students to see themselves as valuable members of the classroom community.

Making Kindergarten Work at a Distance

Master teacher Don Robertson shares easy-to-implement instructional tips that boost productivity and engagement for kindergarten students during remote learning.  Don also presents helpful summer learning information for parents of our youngest students.

The Science of Reading: Clarifying Misconceptions

Dr. Sharon Vaughn describes the Science of Reading and implications for literacy instruction, clarifying misconceptions presented in this latest resurgence. Can a focus on foundational skills and balanced literacy coexist? This podcast provides valuable information every teacher can use.

Supporting Dual Language Learners with Authentic Distance Learning Experiences

Dr. Maria Arreguin Anderson, an author on the myView Literacy and miVisión Lectura solutions, discusses providing dual language learners with relevant, authentic educational opportunities during distance learning.

The Importance of Teacher Self-Care In Our New Normal

Award-winning teacher & literacy specialist Jamil Odom joins former classroom teacher and principal Kathryn Teel to discuss the importance of teacher self-care in these unprecedented times.