Making Learning Fun: Engaging Students with Imagination with @teachheath

Jeromie Heath engages students by dressing up. Some days he's Super Mario or a Mad Scientist — other days he's a pirate. He was even a finalist for People' Magazine's teacher of the year (see the video to believe his classroom — notice the standards on the wall – yes, they are still there.) He engages students by immersing them in experiences. On the show, he says, “I'm tapping into their childhood…”

[tweetthis twitter_handles=”@teachheath”]If a child feels you have a connection with them… then they start learning. Jeromie Heath[/tweetthis]

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In the show Jeromie points out that you don't HAVE to dress up ... you can do little things too.

In the show Jeromie points out that you don't HAVE to dress up … you can do little things too.

Note from Vicki: Jeromie has so much energy, but also a practical approach to what engages kids. Students don't remember worksheets, but they'll remember the MEMORIES. We all need these epic moments. Wow. I just love Jeromie! (I talk about the importance of celebration in Reinventing Writing. Every class at every age needs this.) 

Add @TeachHeath to your PLN

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Jeromie Heath's website

Teacher Jeromie Heath's website has tons of resources for math and science teachers as well as engagement and Common Core.

SHOW NOTES: Jeromie Heath – Show #84 – Making Learning Fun: Engaging Students with Imagination

Jeromie Heath is an elementary teacher in Seattle, Washington where he makes learning fun. By incorporating imaginative play using songs, games, and costumes, he engages his students in learning. He also uses thematic teaching, games, and music; although he lacks research data, he feels his students perform well on standardized tests.
Jeromie calls teaching an art where teachers build connections with students in order to further learning. While also using Understanding By Design and mastery learning principles, it is the zany dress up costumes that students will remember. Listen now to find out how this works in Mr. Heath’s classroom.

Jeromie's Super Mario Classroom

[tweetthis twitter_handles=”@coolcatteacher”]We can be the most amazing prop in our classroom. Vicki Davis[/tweetthis]
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Every Classroom Matters is a bi-weekly Radio Show by Vicki Davis on BAM Radio network with best practices for busy teachers. Subscribe.

Show notes prepared by Lisa Durff, Production Coordinator for Every Classroom Matters. Note from Vicki Davis: I added quite a bit of my thoughts to these notes as well – so this show outline is really a mashup of us both. 

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Vicki Davis

Vicki Davis is a full-time classroom teacher and IT Director in Georgia, USA. She is Mom of three, wife of one, and loves talking about the wise, transformational use of technology for teaching and doing good in the world. She hosts the 10 Minute Teacher Podcast which interviews teachers around the world about remarkable classroom practices to inspire and help teachers. Vicki focuses on what unites us -- a quest for truly remarkable life-changing teaching and learning. The goal of her work is to provide actionable, encouraging, relevant ideas for teachers that are grounded in the truth and shared with love. Vicki has been teaching since 2002 and blogging since 2005. Vicki has spoken around the world to inspire and help teachers reach their students. She is passionate about helping every child find purpose, passion, and meaning in life with a lifelong commitment to the joy and responsibility of learning. If you talk to Vicki for very long, she will encourage you to "Relate to Educate" or "innovate like a turtle" or to be "a remarkable teacher." She loves to talk to teachers who love their students and are trying to do their best. Twitter is her favorite place to share and she loves to make homemade sourdough bread and cinnamon rolls and enjoys running half marathons with her sisters. You can usually find her laughing with her students or digging into a book.

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Anna February 16, 2015 - 7:21 pm


I really like your blog. I am also creating an education blog but it’s just starting out and it’s kind of education and other things as well.
Thank you for compiling all of these wonderful resources.

Vicki Davis February 17, 2015 - 6:31 am

You are welcome and good luck with your endeavor!

Tfields March 28, 2015 - 11:54 pm

What an inspiring message Mr. Heath is sending to his students and to other teachers. I applaud the energy and passion that I saw this innovative teacher put into his lessons. I can only strive to do more of what he does to motivate kids to learn in the classroom. The most impressive part of this article was to hear about how he doesn’t mind spending his own money if it provides a more fun and entertaining environment for himself and his students. What a creative way to incorporate teacher led learning and peer feedback. I really enjoyed how he used the Mario race track as a distraction for the kids to be further invested and engaged in the lesson. My goal is to become more than just a teacher for my kids, just like Mr. Heath. I have used labels attached to my clothing and hats to provide students with some visuals to better help their comprehension of subject matter, but not to this degree. I like the idea of students seeing me as a comedian, singer, personal trainer, aerobics instructor and mentor, especially if it makes them want to come to school ready to learn.
Thanks for sharing. Definitely food for thought.

Vicki Davis April 6, 2015 - 6:48 am

Yes, Tfields! — Jeromie makes us all think about what we can be and we can all be more. When I dress up for my high schoolers, they love it because they say “You’re showing us that it is that important to you.” We are the most important prop in our room and should be willing to get outside our comfort zone! Thanks for commenting!


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The Cool Cat Teacher Blog
Vicki Davis writes The Cool Cat Teacher Blog for classroom teachers everywhere