George Lucas Educational Foundation
Teaching Strategies

New Things to Try in 2015

Instead of committing to New Year's resolutions this year, try for scalability with these strategy suggestions for the next five days, five weeks, and five months.

January 1, 2015

Editor's Note: Betty Ray, Edutopia's Director of Programming and Innovation, contributed to this post.

With all the research on how unlikely it is that making New Year's resolutions actually works, we wanted to offer something a little more realistic. Here are some teacher-tested ideas for new things to try with your students in five days, five weeks, and five months.

5 Days

Improve Your Connection With Parents

Use Humor in the Classroom

5 Weeks

Teach Active Listening

Bridge a Teacher-Student Gap

Support Creative Learning

  • Provide opportunities for students to create, explore, and make. Start by creating a "Wonder Shelf." Providing math students with manipulatives and art supplies can bring excitement, engagement, and basic elements of a makerspace into the classroom.

5 Months

Redesign Your Learning Spaces

Help Your Students Set Goals

  • These goals should be SMART -- Specific, Measurable, Action-oriented, Rigorous, and Timely. Use the six steps, and have students interview each other to support them throughout the process.
  • Additional resource: SMART Goals Connect a School

Shift Mindsets Around Mistakes

Other New Year's Resources from Edutopia

In the comments below, let us know what you're going to try in 2015 -- and what kind of results you expect.

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