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WHAT WORKS IN EDUCATION The George Lucas Educational Foundation

Teaching Strategies

Discover and share best practices for improving your teaching craft -- delivering instruction, engaging students, reaching struggling students, and more.

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Teacher at the chalkboard looking toward students

Feedback for Thinking: Working for the Answer

Instead of helping students by giving them the answers, encourage them to think independently by supplementing your modeling with questions, prompts, and cues.

Laughter and Learning: Humor Boosts Retention

Humor activates the brain's dopamine reward system, stimulating goal-oriented motivation and long-term memory, which means that humor can improve retention in students of all ages.

a photo of a stopwatch

The 8 Minutes That Matter Most

Like a story, lessons deserve compelling beginnings and endings. From pop culture connections to finishing with a level-up, here are eight strategies for holding students' attention.

It’s a Mistake Not to Use Mistakes as Part of the Learning Process

Consider these nine ways to teach with mistakes, including removing the stigma from error, explaining wrong answers, and helping students see mistakes as growth experiences.

On-the-Spot Scaffolding for Students

On-the-spot scaffolding is an essential skill for teachers. Check out these three strategies for assisting students when they struggle.

Discuss

What Doesn't Work: Literacy Practices We Should Abandon

Last comment 4 days 7 hours ago
66 66,001 662,364 views

30 Techniques to Quiet a Noisy Class

Last comment 10 hours 10 min ago
183 168,512 1,422,994 views

Do No Harm: Flexible and Smart Grading Practices

Last comment 15 hours 36 min ago
8 2,950 24,194 views

30 Techniques to Quiet a Noisy Class

Tue, 10/21/2014 - 09:38
183 168,512 1,422,994 views

Preparing a Classroom Culture for Deeper Learning

Thu, 03/12/2015 - 07:00
15 13,037 46,438 views

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7 Reflection Tips for Assessment, Empowerment, and Self-Awareness

Through being reflective about your own teaching practices, model and guide students toward a more reflective approach to their projects, grades, actions, and reactions.

7 2,575 16,378 views
A closeup of a female high school student sitting at a desk taking a test.
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Reimagining School Writing

Move beyond the five-paragraph essay. Bring school writing to life through freewriting, peer reviews, and allowing students to include relevant memories and vivid descriptions.

3 254 9,744 views
A group of six young students are standing alongside a long table with art paper stretched across it. Each student is wearing a long, white apron and is drawing on the paper with markers.
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SEL Is Good Teaching

If you're engaging all students in classroom discussions, offering them responsibility and choice, and communicating with warmth and support, you may already be teaching SEL.

2 187 1,866 views
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Politics: The Great Pumpkin

Discussing politics is often considered a social risk, but it's possible in the classroom by separating out the candidates, issues, process, and outcome.

23 827 views
Four girls working as a team in front of a whiteboard
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Judgment: Navigating Choices and Decisions

Adolescents need guidance in learning judgment -- academic-cognitive and social-emotional -- while their prefrontal cortex is transitioning into a more efficient network for making decisions and achieving goals.

73 2,488 views
Six preteen students are standing on their classroom desks, smiling, and one student is sitting.
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Building Staff Rapport With Flash Lessons

A hands-on administrator asks teachers to become students for a class period and, at his prompting, model trust, academic risk taking, and camaraderie.

25 8,530 43,121 views
Three young girls are standing beside each other wearing hats that say, "I heart math."
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6 Ways to Help Students Understand Math

Help students better understand math by presenting multiple examples, encouraging collaboration on alternative solutions, and framing the class with a clear agenda and effective summary.

52 3,880 26,951 views

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11 Tips on Teaching Common Core Critical Vocabulary

Learning and memory specialist Marilee Sprenger writes about vocabulary critical to the Common Core and offers 11 strategies for helping students learn it.

25 1,428 184,716 views
An illustration of a brain in a hammock between 2 palm trees.
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Energy and Calm: Brain Breaks and Focused-Attention Practices

Here are some activities to stimulate your students' minds when they need a change, and to focus and calm them when they're just too stimulated.

36 18,889 179,118 views
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Do's & Don'ts For Teaching English-Language Learners

In an excerpt from his book with fellow teacher Katie Hull Sypnieski, blogger Larry Ferlazzo looks at a few basic ways to reach students who are learning English as well as the subject at hand.

21 1,735 160,667 views
A young girl is sitting in class, looking straight ahead with a playing card in her hand and a green sheet of paper on her desk. Other students in the classroom are sitting with green sheets of paper and playing cards about.
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Golden Rules for Engaging Students in Learning Activities

Six key rules for student engagement include making it meaningful, fostering efficacy, autonomy support, collaborative learning, establishing positive teacher-student relationships, and mastery orientations.

18 10,632 150,302 views
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4 Things Transformational Teachers Do

Transformational teachers create experiences in their classrooms, melding the art and science of any subject and making their students care about learning.

17 9,197 144,290 views
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SMART Goal Setting With Your Students

SMART goals are specific, measurable, action-oriented, rigorous, and tracked. Help your students develop them through a series of ongoing peer interviews.

5 813 137,448 views
A young, teenage girl in a white collared shirt, blue and red checkered tie, and a blue jacket is standing, smiling, with trees as her backdrop.
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Behavior Expectations and How to Teach Them

Instead of assigning disciplinary consequences when students don't meet behavior expectations, why not deal them as we would deal with academic failures and missteps?

16 17,495 134,131 views

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