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 resources, articles, podcasts, and more we found in May!

1. 6 Fun Back-to-School Activities for Building Classroom Community

At the start of the school year, it’s important to create a sense of belonging in the classroom from day one. Rather than the typical icebreaker exercises, Melissa Kruse at Reading and Writing Haven suggests trying out these six low-prep activities you can use to review class policies and procedures while building connections.

2. Why You Should Bring Podcasts Into Your Classroom

What if students could build stronger reading skills, improve memory, and learn more about language solely by listening? They can, thanks to podcasts! In this article for Cult of Pedagogy, Lindsay Patterson and Monica Brady-Myerov make the case for podcasts in the classroom and share their top educational and entertaining podcasts that students will love.

3. 50 Questions Every Student Should Be Able To Answer Before They Graduate High School

In this post for TeachThought, Terry Heick shares 50 thought-provoking questions your students should ponder as they complete their high school years. Questions range from introspective queries that encourage self-reflection to ones that ask students to observe the workings of the world around them.

4. The 100 Best YA Books of All Time

With so many popular and powerful books released over the past few years, the staff at Time felt it necessary to update their 2015 list of the best YA books of all time. Enlisting the help of authors Elizabeth Acevedo, Kacen Callender, Jenny Han, Jason Reynolds, Adam Silvera, Angie Thomas, and Nicola Yoon, Time created a new list packed with acclaimed YA books from the 1800s to today.

5. What to Do with All That Graded Work: A Functional Filing System for Secondary Teachers

In the past, have you found yourself drowning in piles of old tests and essays? Have you been hesitant to throw them away, but not sure what to do with it all? Then this article by Leah Bouas is for you! Visit The Cornerstone for Teachers to see how Leah created a classroom filing system that lets her easily store and retrieve student work.