Each month, we share five things we love as part of our Footnotes Newsletter. Take a look at some of our favorite English language arts articles, resources, and more we found in December!

1. Point of View Rewrite Activity for the Review Win

Need a quick activity when school starts up again after winter break? Give Brynn Allison’s point-of-view review a try! This humorous lesson plan, which requires no intensive preparation on your part, lets your students hone their writing skills and gain a greater understanding of the sometimes tricky third-person point of view.

2. Using Music for Literary Analysis

From helping students envision scenes in a book to building stronger emotional connections to a story and its characters, music can be a powerful medium for analyzing literature. See how you can mix musical playlist activities into your next novel unit at The Daring English Teacher blog.

3. Analyzing Children’s Books in the Secondary Classroom

At Reading and Writing Haven, Melissa Kruse makes the case for including children’s picture books in your lesson plans, no matter the age of your students. In her post, Melissa maps out her typical structure for using children’s books to help students study language, define literary devices, and improve reading comprehension.

4. How Inquiry Led Me to a Vocab Strategy that Actually Works!

Sometimes, the best way to understand what teaching methods click with your students is to simply ask them. That’s how Jessica Salfia invented a super effective vocabulary strategy that emphasizes word mastery over tedious memorization. Get all of the details on the West Virginia Council of Teachers of English website.

5. The Positive Impact of Author Visits on Students

The idea of having an author visit your school may seem daunting, but that shouldn’t deter you from reaching out. In this post for Book Riot, Lucas Maxwell, a school librarian in London, shares the lasting impact author visits have on students and gives tips on how to host your own author meet-and-greet.