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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 10 hours 36 min ago
72 93,401 679,830 views

30 Techniques to Quiet a Noisy Class

Last comment 1 day 20 hours ago
187 171,812 1,438,501 views

How to Become and Remain a Transformational Teacher

Last comment 17 hours 19 min ago
15 4,296 19,751 views

The Teacher Curse No One Wants to Talk About

Fri, 12/18/2015 - 15:00
17 25,027 380,272 views

What Doesn't Work: Literacy Practices We Should Abandon

Fri, 06/03/2016 - 06:00
72 93,401 679,830 views

How to Become and Remain a Transformational Teacher

Tue, 07/26/2016 - 10:00
15 4,296 19,751 views

Browse

A U.S. army soldier in uniform is kneeling, reading to a group of young kids around him.
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Understanding the Needs of Students From Military Families

Children of military and veteran families need to be understand, have their assets celebrated, and be part of a positive school climate. Use the resources we suggest to educate yourself about and identify your military-connected students.

1 664 2,290 views
Girl sitting at her desk in deep thought, writing
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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 16,642 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 9,777 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 1,874 views
A large pile of red, white, and blue starred pins that say VOTE 2016
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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.

75 2,498 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 8,549 43,061 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 1,428 184,727 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 18,889 180,359 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 1,735 161,844 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 10,632 151,651 views
Animated student explaining something to teacher standing across desk
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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 9,204 144,994 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 17,495 143,954 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.

5 813 138,337 views

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