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

5 Rules Why Teachers Should Stop Spoon-Feeding

Last comment 3 weeks 1 day ago
117 4 5,481 views

Creativity in the Classroom

Last comment 2 weeks 4 days ago
4 1,223 40,114 views

Students Matter: 3 Steps for Effective Differentiated Instruction

Last comment 2 weeks 9 hours ago
7 102 34,134 views

Building a Thinking Classroom in Math

Tue, 10/17/2017 - 12:00
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The Brain Is Wired for Math—Sort Of

Fri, 09/15/2017 - 06:00
6 749 8,852 views

Do No Harm: Flexible and Smart Grading Practices

Fri, 07/08/2016 - 06:00
13 4,518 87,004 views

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Over 100 United States flags are raised in the air with a handful of other country flags lost in the background.
Article

The Election and the Educator

During a contentious election season, a teacher's best strategy may be encouraging healthy, informed debate among students while withholding his or her own views.

2 1,410 8,471 views
A group of five ethnic teens in formal wear are taking a selfie outside.
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A Student Perspective on Voice, Choice, and Meaning

High school teacher Josh Block interviews a graduating student to examine the complex dynamic of collaboration and supporting someone else through the creative and intellectual processes.

1 478 3,239 views
Eight young kids are running outside on the grass in front of a playground.
Article

Building SEL Skills Through Formative Assessment

Measure and evaluate your students' SEL development by using a Progression Chart and strategies that include probing discussions, unobtrusive assessments, and student-generated assessments.

1,356 11,461 views
A roller 0.7 mm pen is on top of a yellow folder filled with paper.
Article

Do No Harm: Flexible and Smart Grading Practices

Have students take responsibility for their grades and behavior by strategically offering opportunities to redo assignments, retake tests, and reflect on their performance.

13 4,518 87,004 views
Five young elementary students are sitting around a six-sided table in a classroom. They're all wearing headphones and playing on iPads. A female teacher is assisting one of them.
Article

Create a Startup Culture in Your Classroom

Through use of classroom space, intentional course design and scheduling, and building "brand" identity, teachers can create a startup culture of empowerment and innovation for their students.

7 2,474 14,949 views
Illustration of different ways QR codes are used to share information
Article

5 Ways to Use Scannable Tech in the Math Classroom

Using QR codes and AR, math teachers can connect to tutorials, make their word wall interactive, share student work, explore 3D shapes, and update old textbooks.

237 15,448 views
A young female teacher in an orange shirt is standing, bending over holding a book, and smiling while she's looking at two young students sitting at their desks.
Article

Exit Celebrating: 8 Epic Ideas for Ending the School Year

Give your students a year-end send-off that celebrates their learning. Ideas include Top 10 lists, party-themed exams, symbolic toasts, and heartfelt letters.

5 1,019 21,427 views

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Article

To Teach Effective Writing, Model Effective Writing

Edutopia blogger David Cutler believes that the best writing teachers model writing for their students. He suggests six strategies, including continuing to hone your own craft and demonstrating the value of sharing finished work.

27 549 66,523 views
Article

How Learning Profiles Can Strengthen Your Teaching

Here's a heretical notion: learning profiles can actually benefit students. Blogger John McCarthy shares his tips.

9 109 66,274 views
Article

Design 101 for Educators: Choose Your Fonts Carefully

Jason Cranford Teague, author and observer, makes the case that your students' ability to retain information is connected to the fonts they're seeing on the page or screen.

6 220 65,527 views
Article

Avoiding the Trap of "Q & A Teaching"

Guest blogger Petra Claflin, Digital Media Manager for YES Prep Public Schools, identifies the problem of 'Q&A teaching' and offers five tips for teachers to examine and improve their modeling and direct instruction practice.

18 10,365 65,028 views
Article

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

I recently heard a TED talk from Brian Goldman, a doctor who admits to having made mistakes. In very emotional language, he describes some costly emergency room mistakes, and then makes a strong case for changing the way that the medical profession addresses...

29 5,150 63,284 views
Article

Yes, You Can Teach and Assess Creativity!

Edutopia blogger Andrew Miller, reinforcing his long-held belief that creativity can be taught and assessed, offers a PBL strategy for how to do just that.

20 1,396 62,538 views
Article

Academic Sponge Activities

A "sponge activity" is a lesson soaking up precious time that would otherwise be lost. Hint: it should be fun as well as educational.

413 62,040 views

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