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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

Recognizing and Overcoming False Growth Mindset

Last comment 5 days 15 hours ago
14 4,103 33,883 views

Not Just Group Work -- Productive Group Work!

Last comment 4 hours 46 min ago
30 590 21,892 views

Behavior Expectations and How to Teach Them

Last comment 6 days 20 hours ago
13 6,892 54,818 views

When Grading Harms Student Learning

Mon, 11/23/2015 - 06:00
24 14,284 59,624 views

Conversing, Consulting, and Creating

Thu, 02/04/2016 - 10:00
7 1,210 views

Not Just Group Work -- Productive Group Work!

Wed, 09/24/2014 - 09:58
30 590 21,892 views

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A closeup of a young teenage girl looking up with her head tilt back and her hand under her chin.
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How Moxie Can Help Students Succeed

Moxie (a blend of positivity, purpose, and volition) helps students count their blessings and evaluate their ongoing strategies to become happier and more successful.

2 807 13,171 views
A group of young students are sitting on the floor in their classroom, looking up.
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Integrating Mindfulness in Your Classroom Curriculum

Make mindfulness a part of classroom learning by integrating it into curriculum-themed activities through exercises in breathing, sensory experience, guided imagery, and movement.

3 13,418 19,756 views
A teacher is smiling at two young students, standing in front of a cardboard display on a desk.
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Demonstrating Authentic and Rigorous Learning in PBL

Ensure authentic, rigorous PBL learning by having students create relevant artifacts, by designing intentional self-assessment opportunities, and by having students present to authentic public audiences.

1,219 4,627 views
A closeup of two teenage students sitting in a classroom, talking, smiling, and laughing, with other kids sitting and talking in the background.
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Hypos: Real Engagement With Unreal Questions

Use hypothetical scenarios to help engage your students, efficiently apply knowledge, provide problem-solving exercises, build conflict-resolution skills, and reinforce study habits.

733 4,093 views
Two young women are squatting by a table in a classroom; one of them is reaching into a cardboard box that's part of a display.
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3 PBL Practices to Empower Students

Empower students in PBL settings by framing the purpose for learning, intentionally structuring collaboration and choice, and using appropriate scaffolds for learning and revision.

3,161 12,281 views
This image is of a statue of Homer, the author of the Iliad and the Odyssey. The left side of the statue is untouched, and the right side of the statue is digitally edited, appearing pixelated in green and purple.
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Homer Meets High-Tech: Data Visualization and the Classics

One teacher spiced up "The Iliad" with data visualization, inspiring middle school students to take a fresh look at narrative, themes, characterizations, and methods of fact-based inquiry.

4 1,446 7,830 views
A closeup of a young boy giving the peace sign with his fingers.
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Empathy in the Classroom: Why Should I Care?

The benefits of empathy in education include building positive classroom culture, strengthening community, and preparing students to be leaders in their own communities.

6 6,480 9,967 views

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5 Research-Based Tips for Providing Students with Meaningful Feedback

Teacher feedback must be informative and encouraging for students to fully understand whether they're learning and what they can do to improve the learning process.

20 5,935 83,829 views
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Big Ideas for Better Schools: Ten Ways to Improve Education

Ideas for students, teachers, schools, and communities.

6 438 83,295 views
black and white photo of a student at a desk looking at the camera
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Myth-Busting Differentiated Instruction: 3 Myths and 3 Truths

With delivery of instruction, one size does not fit all. John McCarthy launches his differentiated instruction series by busting three common myths about DI.

42 5,257 82,761 views
Two teenagers are sitting at a table with a laptop, one is holding a cell phone charger and the other is holding a cell phone, connecting it to a white wire.
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22 Powerful Closure Activities

Closure ends a lesson and creates a lasting impression, so make it fun. Students will better retain information reinforced with music, movement, art, or play.

7 13,678 79,558 views
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5 Ways to Help Your Students Become Better Questioners

Asking a question can be a scary step into the void. How do you create a culture of using questioning in the classroom?

21 5,169 75,820 views
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Getting Started With Project-Based Learning (Hint: Don't Go Crazy)

If you're new to project-based learning, Edutopia blogger Andrew Miller eases you into the approach with four suggestions to help you stay sane and begin mastering PBL.

7 238 73,684 views
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First Day of Kindergarten: 8 Survival Skills

Blogger and author Sarah Richard shares eight teacher survival skills for the first day of kindergarten.

12 440 70,303 views

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