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WHAT WORKS IN EDUCATION The George Lucas Educational Foundation

K-12 Education Tips & Strategies That Work

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You'll find practical classroom strategies and tips from real educators, as well as lesson ideas, personal stories, and innovative approaches to improving your teaching practice. If you have any thoughts or comments about these blogs, please don't hesitate to let us know.

Personalize your PD by using tools like Google Forms, Padlet, and Nearpod to learn what teachers already know and what they need to know.
Engineer PD activities on your own terms, whether it's inside your own school building, among far-flung teacher friends, or out in the teacher-friendly Twitterverse.
What might we learn about ourselves if we engaged in a year-long inquiry into the hopeful stories in our schools? What could we learn about our capacities, our will and resilience?
If we hope for equity in education, we may have to abandon our efforts toward standardization and recognize the individuality of our students.
This unique program, "Story Time from Space," which features astronauts at the international space station reading aloud stories, will help teachers to better inspire the next generation of science learners, discoverers, and creators.
For successful gamification, build the excitement, use the data you collect, make the game fun for all students, and never underestimate the value of play.
To assess maker projects in your class, begin with a three-part rubric to guide students through process, understanding, and product.
The rapid adoption of devices in the classroom has fundamentally changed the way we can create video. Every part of the creation process -- writing, recording, editing, and distributing -- is possible on the devices that can fit in our pocket. Vision is the most dominant of the five senses. Research shows that concepts are better remembered if they are taught visually. This is called the pictorial superiority effect, and it’s why video is such a powerful learning tool. A video is created three times: when you write it, when you shoot it, and when you edit it. There are several formats that can be used to write a script for the classroom: a Google Doc, a dedicated app (ex: Storyboards), a Google Form, or a production organization document. Whichever format is used, emphasis should be placed on how it will be used in the classroom, and what the goal of the video is. When recording, it is important to incorporate basic rules of composition, such as the rule of thirds, into your video. Being aware of the environment (basic concepts like lighting and room tone) makes it easier to edit. Curating content is another significant way to incorporate video into your classroom. If you don’t have the time or software to make a fancy video, odds are someone has already made it and shared it on YouTube. This Film Festival is equal parts curation and creation.
Instead of believing in the right/left brain, learning styles, and that we use only ten percent of our brains, we should focus on neuroscience research.
Social media can enhance differentiated instruction if the tools are selected with a careful eye on individual students' readiness, interests, and learning profiles.

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