Used in over 190 schools across the United States, our plays transform your classroom into a lively theatre company. All the world is a stage---and with this program, your classroom is no exception.
LPM Education offers a Plays program with over 35 plays designed to bring the classroom alive with rich language arts activity. What better way to ensure that your elementary and middle school students cover the foundational texts of English literature.
Through professional development, teachers are trained in how to integrate plays in the Reading classroom; and how to use plays to foster greater fluency, comprehension, decoding skills and literary analysis.
With over 35 scripts to choose from, teachers can use plays to introduce fairy tales, legends, classic children's literature and even historical events to K-8 students.
A whole-classroom program
Each script has enough roles for every student in the class, so that no one is left out or sitting on the sidelines. Moreover, the scripts aim to give each student approximately the same amount of lines. For students who are above or below reading level, there are roles within each play written at an appropriate degree of challenge.
The act of reading plays aloud is so much fun that most students fail to recognize how hard they are working...and how much they are growing as readers. Perhaps the best indicator of the program's success is how many students take the plays home and act them out there on their free time. We've heard about students inviting their friends over to act out the plays together. Naturally, this only adds to their development as readers, thinkers and storytellers.
Each play comes with a questioning and discussion-based teacher's guide and several short writing prompts and rubrics for assessment.
Cinderella Math is a program that integrates Math and Language Arts. Students first enjoy a fairy tale. Then, they solve story-based word problems. By solving the problems, they help the main character of the fairy tale resolve the plot.
Cinderella Math includes ten fairy tales and fables. It covers the Math Common Core standards for grades 1 through 4.
Spy Week is an instructional technique that transforms students into investigators working for Scotland Yard.
Before reading a work of classical literature, students build background through participating in Spy Week.
Spy Week begins with a visit from an intelligence agent who asks the class to support the work of Scotland Yard in researching a subject. (The subject, unbeknownst to the students, just happens to be integral to the novel they are about to read).
The class breaks into spy teams of 4 or 5 students. Each team is assigned a subtopic and has a detailed list of questions to research and time-sensitive deliverables to produced. Every question assigned to each team develops a knowledge base that will "pay off" during the reading of the classic novel. Rather than feel at sea in a challenging text, students will understand the world of the novel, grasp references that they might otherwise have missed and feel grown-up in their newfound worldly knowledge.
Each team has
• a student leader who is in charge of ensuring that all team members have clear deliverables to work on.
• a technology coordinator in charge of bringing laptops to the team and putting them away.
Throughout the week, each team works autonomously on their projects. The teacher circulates the room, checking in with each team's leader to ensure that every student has a clear task and is working on a deliverable.
Teams produce a wide range of informational documents, including:
• charts and tables
• written reports
At the end of Spy Week, the intelligence agent returns to the class to be briefed on the class' research. Each team presents their deliverables and a written "dossier" comprised of a thorough write-up on their assigned topic.
Spy week topics include
• researching the Yukon Gold Rush prior to reading The Call of the Wild
• researching the Tudors and the Protestant Reformation prior to reading The Prince and the Pauper
• researching the Code of Chivalry in the Middle Ages prior to reading the Adventures of Robin Hood
• researching the geography of the Middle East and Southeast Asia prior to reading Arabian Nights
• researching the history of American slavery prior to reading Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass
Each Spy Week unit includes:
• High-quality anthology of nonfiction, and reference sources in a range of media on the target topic
• Spy team assignments: with everything a team will need to complete their dossier
• 6 Lesson Plans
Bringing the Classics to Life
Bringing the Classics to Life is a supplemental program designed to introduce students to the rigors and richness of classic literature in their original form. The program builds the imaginations and intellects of children, while expanding their vocabularies and literary analytical skills.
There are a few premises behind the program:
• Not all literature is created equal. Some books have greater educational value than others.
• Literature has a history. By reading classical texts, students become familiar with how literature has developed over time.
• The reading of classic literature is an intellectual discipline that improves with extended practice.
• The persistence and concentration required to read classic literature helps to build the brain. It improves the child's ability to read anything else.
• All children are capable of reading age-appropriate, great works of literature.
• Classic literature is relevant to young readers of all cultural backgrounds, walks of life and periods.
I created this program to ensure that children of widely varying backgrounds and reading abilities could enjoy some of the best stories ever written. But how do you teach the Call of the Wild to a recent immigrant from Yemen? And how do you engage a tween from the Bronx in the rarified world of the Tudor court? Classic literature is known for its rigor. How can children who fail the end of year state exams possibly read a text that is three grades above their reading level?
Reaching All Learners
Bringing Classics to Life encompasses
• project-based learning to build background into the novel's setting
• dramatic adaptations of classic literature to build student engagement and fluency
• the use of performance is the classroom to actively engage students in performing the text.
• slow and close readings of the original texts to develop comprehension skills
Through these techniques, the program has been successful with:
• English Language Learners
• Students with Learning Challenges
• Students in Gifted and Talented Programs
• Students in Public Schools with class sizes of 28
• Students in Charter Schools with class sizes of 20
Incorporating Nonfiction through Project-Based Learning: Spy Week
The program begins with Spy Week. During this week, students form teams and analyze informational texts to produce a "briefing" or "dossier" on their assigned topic. Each team is provided with a unique set of research questions and deliverables. The questions are designed to address aspects of the setting and context of the novel.
Student teams must use the data to produce
• charts and tables
• illustrations and diagrams
• written reports
At the end of Spy Week, each team presents their research to the Lead Spy who evaluates the quality of the group's work. With the sharing of each team's knowledge, the class is ready to begin reading the classic novel. As the student read the novel, they catch all the historical and cultural references---for they built this background during Spy Week.
Prime Time Parenting
Based on the parenting book, Prime Time Parenting, our workshops are designed to help parents establish a 2-hour school night routine that hits all the bases of children’s development while also getting the kids to bed at a reasonable hour.
In order for students to write with clarity and style, they need to master the fundamentals of grammar, punctuation, capitalization and sentence structure.
SentenceCraft is an easy-to-implement program designed to be used three times per week for 15 minutes each session. Independent practice is provided which students can complete during the school day or as homework.
Offered at grades 1 through 8, SentenceCraft teaches students to write with precision, beauty and power.
Each year, LPM works with schools to help their teachers and students develop the skills that predict success on state exams.
There are a limited number of question types on Common Core exams. Understanding the language of the questions, the different question types and the skills they require is the first step in performing well on the exam. Too many students, especially inner-city students, perform poorly on state exams because they cannot parse the often convoluted language of the exam questions.
Using our proprietary program "Questions Types on Common Core Exams," we systematically work through each question type and its associated skills with students and teachers. This ensures that no student will perform poorly because they do not understand the language of the question. It also provides a key opportunity to review important skills such as word analysis, poetry conventions, text structures and literary devices.
The goal is to prepare students for success on the exams and well beyond the exams. We work closely with schools to ensure that preparing for exams fits into the true goal of education: to produce individuals who are able to participate meaningfully in society as only they can.
We passionately believe that exams should be framed in positive terms. Exams are opportunities to push ourselves to grow and show what we can do. The more that students enjoy the act of taking the test, the better they are likely to perform. We infuse Angela Duckworth's theory of GRIT in our work with students and teachers. The overall outcome is improved academic skill, a positive approach to hard work and challenge and the satisfaction of doing one's best.
The Young Historians Program
The Young Historians Program is a middle-school supplemental ELA program that engages students in grades 5 -8 in the study of local and family history, tying both to historical, economic and social trends. Designed for English Language Learners, the program helps students develop academic English writing and reading skills as they research their own family or community’s history.
Young Historians Program is customized for each school. Every school has a unique student community, with families hailing from different parts of the world and representing distinct language groups. The program’s curriculum is customized to reflect the participating school’s neighborhood and participating students’ countries of origin. The program is aligned to the Common Core standards and provides particular practice and support in reading and writing informational texts.
Created by Heather Miller while a graduate student at MIT in 2001, the Young Historians Program was a recipient of a grant from MIT's Race and Relations Committee, a materials grant from MIT's Ideas Competition and was featured as a showcase program by New York City’s Department of Education for English Language Learners.