Improving Participation with Talk Moves
Fourth grade teacher Lynn Simpson uses a variety of talk moves to encourage participation and collaboration. Lynn explains how asking students to repeat each others' thinking encourages deeper understanding. By adding on, students build off of their peers' ideas. Lynn describes how her class devised their own "agree" signal to use during discussions.
Improving Practice with Sarah Brown Wessling
National Teacher of the Year explores the instructional model known as gradual release. In this model, the cognitive load shifts to the learners through the lesson. Also known as structuring your lesson with an, I Do, We Do, You Do," format. Sarah shows what this model looks like in her classroom. She is leading this exploration in her district.
Classroom Management During Centers
Ryan Berger is in the middle of his first year as a new Kindergarten teacher. He asks Jim Knight to observe a lesson and share strategies to help him specifically with transitioning students between centers. Mr. Knight looks for classroom management strategies he can recommend to help Mr. Berger improve class structure. Mr. Berger shares that transitioning from working with 5th graders to kindergarteners has been stressful and some of the strategies he previously used do not work as well…
Caring and Control Create a Safe, Positive Classroom
Third grade teacher Lori Sinclair seeks the advice of instructional expert Jim Knight in an effort to improve classroom management and maximize student engagement.Lori and Jim analyze her daily procedures and routines and uncover three important takeaways that contribute to the positive culture of her classroom. A morning meeting helps Lori gauge students' state of mind and gives students an opportunity to decompress before they focus on learning. Additional opportunities for student…
Think Time and Collaborative Learning
Fourth and fifth grade teacher Becky Pittard gives her students individual think time before having them work in groups. Becky gives her students a math problem and has each student grapple with the problem on their own. She then gives students the option of continuing to work independently or partnering up with another student. Becky explains how the think time helps all students to productively participate in group work.
Clipboards: A Tool for Informal Assessment
Math coach Audra McPhillips uses a clipboard to take notes on her students' progress. Audra explains how she assesses students' understanding and uses her notes to inform future instruction.
Middle school math teacher Audra McPhillips explains how she uses hint cards to support her students and encourage independence. Audra explains how she writes probing questions on the hint cards to help scaffold her students' understanding. Audra shares how she has noticed her students benefiting from the extra support of the hint cards.
3 R's: Revolution, Reaction and Reform
Ms. DiMaggio's 4th graders explore the essential but complex concepts of revolution, reaction, and reform. They begin with what she calls a "Quick Write" in which students independently write about anything they know about the three given words. Students then discuss what they've written in small groups. Next, students rotate around the room in teams to analyze photos of historical events responding in writing with "I see. . . I think. . . I wonder. . ." Ms.
Guided Reading with Jenna: Classroom Management
In this five part series, see all the pieces that come together for guided reading in Jenna Ogier's classroom. Students learn to work independently and rotate through stations, while Ms. Ogier meets with small groups of students and delivers a lesson at their level.
Third Grade teacher Dale Eilers introduces an engaging, interactive idea called the Gallery Walk. A Gallery Walk can be used in every subject and across grades 3 through 12. Students rotate among stations at which student work is displayed. At each station, students are asked to write in complete sentences one thing they notice and one question they have.Gallery walks expose students to the different ideas investigated by their classmates, allows them to learn from others work, and can also…
Illustrating Democracy: Art Brings Words to Life
Fifth grade teacher Melissa Vitti has her students express concepts of government through visual arts. She begins her lesson by having students brainstorm keywords that they've been learning about in social studies. Students worked together to create tableaus to represent some of the keywords that they brainstormed. Using a view finder, the class is able to hone in on specific areas of the tableaus. Students then express "democracy" and "majority" through gestural drawings. As a reflection…
Fist to Five Feedback
Dale Eilers, a 2nd and 3rd grade teacher, shares a strategy for gathering immediate feedback from students. Dale uses Fist to Five feedback, asking students to measure their understanding of content, emotional state or comfort level on a scale of 0 (fist) to 5 (five fingers open hand). Noting that this strategy can be used to assess many things, it is important to define the extremes of the scale (0 and 5) so that feedback is clear and accurate.