George Lucas Educational Foundation

3-5 Upper Elementary

Explore and share tips, strategies, and resources for helping students develop in elementary school grades 3-5.

  • Why Learning at Home Should Be More Self-Directed—and Less Structured

    On March 18, 2020, Simone Kern tweeted that simply “recreating schools at home” passes up a golden opportunity to engage kids in authentic, self-directed learning.
    Simone Kern
  • How to Support Home Learning in Elementary Grades

    A first and second grade teacher shares his home learning plan for his students and how he is engaging their families.
  • How To Maximize the Benefits of Individual Reading Conferences

    Listening to a student read is great formative assessment that gives the teacher a clear sense of how to help them improve.
  • The Sensory Room: Helping Students With Autism Focus and Learn

    Imagine a safe space where students with autism can go to calm their bodies and then get back to the business of learning.
  • Making Students Feel Safe

    A trauma-informed approach ensures that students feel safe, supported, and nurtured—to improve their chances of academic success. 
  • A Daily Support System for Students

    Students who need extra social and emotional support have a quick check-in with an adult at the start and end of each day.
  • 5 Ways to Support Students Who Struggle With Reading Comprehension

    These strategies can help students who are able to decode well but have difficulty understanding what they read—and they’re beneficial for all students.
  • Time to Play: More State Laws Require Recess

    Unstructured playtime is making a comeback in schools as frustrated teachers, parents, and advocacy groups demand legislative action.
    Brittany Shammas
  • Ditching the Reading Logs

    Tracking minutes wasn’t helping her students, so a teacher asked them to instead discuss their reading every day, making it a social activity.
  • Bringing a Dog to School

    A veteran teacher and administrator makes the case for having a therapy dog in elementary school.
  • What Doesn’t Work: Literacy Practices We Should Abandon

    The number one concern that I hear from educators is lack of time, particularly lack of instructional time with students. Although we can't entirely solve the time problem, we can mitigate it by carefully analyzing our use of class time.
  • Schoolwide Strategies for Promoting a Love of Reading

    A literacy consultant explains how schools can encourage all students to share the joy of reading.
  • What Brain Science Teaches Us About Conflict Resolution

    When a teacher noticed her kids fighting at recess, she turned to neuroscience and mindfulness practice to help them take control of their emotions.
  • What Teachers Should Know About Dysgraphia

    Students with dysgraphia have an unexpected difficulty with spelling and writing skills. Here are the red flags to look for, and ways to support these students.
  • 6 Elementary Reading Strategies That Really Work

    Strategies like choral reading and ear reading improve students’ reading fluency, expand their vocabulary, and increase their confidence.