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 1 day 2 hours ago
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Using Art to Teach Critical Thinking

Last comment 3 days 20 hours ago
26 1,029 19,932 views

SMART Goal Setting With Your Students

Last comment 2 weeks 6 days ago
31 454 252,897 views

Teaching a Class With Big Ability Differences

Thu, 04/13/2017 - 06:00
20 178 16,262 views

Making Failure Harder Work Than Passing

Wed, 09/30/2015 - 10:00
39 850 75,991 views

5 Rules Why Teachers Should Stop Spoon-Feeding

Wed, 10/05/2016 - 05:17
116 4 5,481 views

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photo of a student in gallery filled with hanging flowers
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Creating an Ecology of Wonder

From modeling curiosity to exploring big questions, check out these five tips for using art to cultivate imagination and wonder in your classroom.

3 992 9,219 views
photo of young students sitting at desks in a classroom
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6 Opening and Closing Routines for New Teachers

Check for understanding, manage your students, and build classroom community with these six opening and closing classroom routines.

6 10,588 170,170 views
A closeup of a teenage boy sitting by himself in a cafeteria, dressed in a blue button up shirt, tie, and suit jacket, looking directly at the camera.
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4 Student Engagement Tips (From a Student)

Harley Center shares how relationships, humor, choice, and displaying his work engaged him, plus his three-minute video highlighting student work and personalized learning.

2 1,847 25,912 views
A high school girl is asleep with her head resting on her desk, and other classmates are sitting around her, talking.
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Dialogue Defibrillators: Jump-Start Classroom Discussions!

Here are eight remedies for classroom participation issues like fuzzy questions, introverted students, lack of focus, social threat, boredom, sleepiness, cognitive load, and wait time.

1 136 15,198 views
A young girl is lying in a hospital bed, holding a teddy bear, smiling, and pointing at her doctor's face. Her doctor is wearing a clown hat and nose.
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Teacher Support for Children Undergoing Medical Treatment

When children are absent for ongoing medical treatment, educate the class about their illness, and foster a classroom community that reaches out to include the recovering classmate.

1 65 1,246 views
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When We Listen to Students

If you want to know how to reach, engage, and best teach your students, ask them. Here are example questions and tips on how to ask them.

8 456 62,538 views
Four young students are smiling and sitting at two desks pushed together. Five paper-made windmills are on their desks.
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4 Approaches to Building Positive Community in Any Classroom

All students want to feel part of their classroom community. Here are four activities to help them feel welcomed and comfortable.

4 955 12,956 views

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Differentiated Instruction: Resource Roundup

In this collection of tools and advice from Edutopia and the web, find resources to help you adjust instruction in response to diverse learner needs and interests.

235 97,169 views
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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.

52 247 94,179 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.

7 244 91,936 views
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Planning the Best Curriculum Unit Ever

The good curriculum is in the details, so focus your teacher super powers on the granular aspects of planning ahead for the new school year.

7 37 90,192 views
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7-Step Prep: Make a Weekly Plan for YOU!

Advance planning is essential for a week of effective teaching, yet the most effective planning system will let you incorporate and track those on-the-fly changes.

22 533 89,694 views
Yellow dunce cap sitting on a stool in front of a blackboard
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12 Ways to Avoid Student Humiliation

Embarrassing or belittling students may interfere with learning and lead to long-term resentment. Teachers should treat students respectfully and be mindful of their feelings.

31 2,681 89,445 views
Young girl resting her head in her hand looking perplexed
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Avoiding "Learned Helplessness"

Take responsibility for empowering students, and avoid the schooling habits that train them to seek a single right answer instead of exploring the learning process.

12 2,447 86,206 views

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