Featured author: Melanie Foster
Melanie Foster has taught a range of subjects, including AP Biology, Pre-AP Chemistry, Pre-AP Physics, and Environmental Science, in urban school districts in El Paso, TX. She currently teaches AP Biology and Pre-AP Chemistry.
We chatted with Melanie about her experience teaching and being a successful TES author, and here’s what she had to say about:
What makes a successful teaching resource
A good teaching resource captivates your audience while meeting multiple levels of Bloom's taxonomy and multiple intelligences. I am always reading new science discoveries and researching old ones to bring real world examples to my students. Things that shock and awe help my students remember the science standards better than simple explanations with no real-life examples. I also create lessons which are student driven and encourage student conversations about the topics. It is exciting to see my class use academic language and have mini-debates over the possible answers.
Advice for other or new TES authors
Do not be afraid to share your resources with others. If you have a great lesson that your students enjoy and you spent time developing it, chances are that other people will love and appreciate it too. I prefer seeing resources from actual teachers because I know we have the same goal in mind. I would also rather pay a fellow teacher for a great resource because I know they actually use it in the classroom and work with an amazing array of personalities.
Her process for making resources
Most of my resources come from seeing a deficit in learning. I give a pre-assessment in the beginning of the year and then I start a resource based on my students’ weaknesses. I think about what background information they need in order to understand the concept better and include that. The final step is looking for real world examples. I also make sure to have visuals, writing, conversation, and kinesthetic lessons. I use art and foldables to keep my students hands busy. If they are busy creating something, they are less likely to become distracted and sneak text. I am working on bringing the multiple intelligence lessons into a digital form so more teachers can use them.
This powerpoint exposes students to the history of Atomic Theory before guiding them through the basics of protons, neutrons, electrons, isotopes, and more. A practice problem at the end has students calculating atomic mass.
Discover the wonders of atomic elements with MizzFoster’s comprehensive Periodic Table Bundle! Students will scavenger hunt their way through the 118 elements to learn how they got their name and group. A teacher-friendly powerpoint presentation will teach periodic trends as students complete interactive notebook organizers to synthesize learning objectives.
Are your students confused by mitosis and the cell cycle for plants and animals? Have students get creative with MizzFoster’s foldable organizer. This resource will not only help reinforce good study habits (note-taking sections are included), but also provide engagement opportunities for both visual and kinesthetic learners.