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 20 hours 25 min ago
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Using Art to Teach Critical Thinking

Last comment 3 days 14 hours ago
26 1,029 19,932 views

Building Staff Rapport With Flash Lessons

Last comment 3 weeks 14 hours ago
31 4,102 48,585 views

Making Failure Harder Work Than Passing

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

Teaching a Class With Big Ability Differences

Thu, 04/13/2017 - 06:00
19 178 16,262 views

5 Rules Why Teachers Should Stop Spoon-Feeding

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

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Article

Building Community With Attendance Questions

Taking attendance shows which students are physically present, but asking an attendance question stretches students' minds toward actively learning as part of a classroom community.

13 703 43,851 views
A rack of postcards from New Mexico
Article

The Power of the Postcard

Postcards may seem like relics of the snail-mail age, but they can still provide an exciting, fascinating entree into literacy for new readers and writers.

50 5,481 views
Article

9 Ways to Plan Transformational Lessons: Planning the Best Curriculum Unit Ever

Transformational lessons don't just happen. They require planning, mindfulness, and a commitment to shift away from educational approaches of the past.

17 323 98,664 views
An illustration of a shadow-like teenage boy. He's drawing a school, inspired from reading a book. The word "growth" is highlighted in green in the background.
Article

How to Become and Remain a Transformational Teacher

Transformational teachers share best practices, build mentoring relationships, observe their peers, keep things fresh, model their subject's usefulness, and demonstrate caring beyond what they teach.

47 3,114 67,769 views
A teacher is smiling, sitting at a classroom table with four young kids. They're building things out of pipe cleaners, Kleenex boxes, and toilet paper roles.
Article

Resources for Creating a Radically Compassionate Classroom

As you ponder curriculum, seating, and policies, here are some ideas and resources to consider that will assist you in making your class a welcoming, safe, and inclusive space for your students.

1 457 9,966 views
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 1,408 8,471 views
A group of five ethnic teens in formal wear are taking a selfie outside.
Article

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.

1 468 3,239 views

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Illo of a speech bubble in a speech bubble
Article

Metacognition: Nurturing Self-Awareness in the Classroom

When students practice metacognition, the act of thinking about their thinking helps them make greater sense of their life experiences and start achieving at higher levels.

23 5,961 85,957 views
Three young boys are hovering over their classroom table, smiling. They're holding and looking at nuts, bolts, and screws that are lying on a piece of lamented paper with two circles drawn on it.
Article

Recognizing and Overcoming False Growth Mindset

Examples of a false growth mindset include praising effort over progress, affirming students' potential without enabling them, and blaming their mindset instead of refocusing it.

25 7,445 84,462 views
A photo of post-it notes in various bright colors stuck on a wall.
Article

Using Old Tech (Not Edtech) to Teach Thinking Skills

Butcher paper and Post-it notes can help students understand the collaborative thinking that takes place on a shared Google Doc.

11 2,073 83,715 views
Article

Rethinking Whole Class Discussion

Edutopia blogger Todd Finley considers whole class discussion and presents ample research about what works best.

10 778 82,718 views
Article

3 Strategies to Promote Independent Thinking in Classrooms

Guest blogger and master teaching specialist Margaret Regan describes three strategies that can promote independent thinking in classrooms.

16 1,457 82,220 views
Article

Parent Involvement in Early Literacy

Erika Burton explains how parents can create the stepping stones toward literacy for their preK children.

22 1,998 82,220 views
Illo of silhouette of two men lifting a big desk above their shoulders
Article

Ditching the Desk

Remove the teacher's desk and students feel more comfortable and less intimidated, teachers feel more active and engaged, and classroom learning happens in a shared space.

32 1,476 80,226 views

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