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, videos, and more we found in October!

1. Spooky Book Recommendations

Who doesn’t love a good ghost story, especially during the Halloween season? Elementary school teacher Jennifer sure does! Visit her YouTube channel to see her scary reading recommendations for elementary and middle-school students.

2. Six Tips for Teaching Grammar

Grammar might not be the most glamorous of all ELA subjects, but it’s undoubtedly important for students to learn. Check out this post on Language Arts Classroom for six practical tips for taking your grammar lessons to the next level.

3. Elevate Student Writing With Poetry Pauses

Writing is hard work, and sometimes students need a break. ELA educator Brett Vogelsinger recognized this and created what he calls “productive interruptions” in his writing lessons. One of those interruptions are his “poetry detours.” At the NCTE blog, see how Brett uses poems as mentor texts to help his students develop stronger ideas during their writing workshops. 

4. Explore the K-12 Section of The Open Library

Have you heard of the Internet Archive? This nonprofit organization is dedicated to providing free and open access to a variety of media resources, including eBooks. Recently, they launched a special section for K-12 readers. Richard Byrne at Free Technology for Teachers has the details.

5. 6 Engaging But Intentional Halloween Activities for Middle School ELA

Looking for Halloween-themed ELA activities that aren’t mere busy work? Natayle Brown has you covered. At her website, Natayle presents six lesson plans on grammar and literature that will both terrify your students and teach them something new. Though the activities are intended for middle schoolers, they can easily be adapted for the high school classroom.