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 3 hours ago
94 3 4,929 views

Not Just Group Work -- Productive Group Work!

Last comment 2 weeks 3 days ago
43 99 39,676 views

SMART Goal Setting With Your Students

Last comment 2 days 14 hours ago
19 493 230,808 views

Energy and Calm: Brain Breaks and Focused-Attention Practices

Fri, 09/16/2016 - 09:49
50 4,008 295,908 views

5 Rules Why Teachers Should Stop Spoon-Feeding

Wed, 10/05/2016 - 05:17
94 3 4,929 views

How to Become and Remain a Transformational Teacher

Tue, 07/26/2016 - 10:00
47 2,878 66,538 views

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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 21,687 views
Three high-school teens are sitting next to each other on a couch, two girls on the left and a boy on the right. The girl in the middle has a laptop on her lap that they're all looking at.
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Evaluation Within Project-Based Learning

Because PBL is about more than learning content, PBL teachers should investigate and experiment with multi-model strategies for assessing their students' learning skills.

16 223 21,440 views
A young boy in a large-striped red and blue polar shirt is sitting at his desk with his head down in a book.
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What Doesn't Work: Literacy Practices We Should Abandon

Literacy strategies that waste instructional time include looking up words on lists, prizes for reading, weekly spelling tests, unsupported independent reading, and denial of recess.

122 49,746 1,261,062 views
A female teacher is sitting cross-legged on a stage, and students are standing, talking to each nearby in costumes.
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Who Is Your Warm Demander Role Model?

When encouraging a student to be his or her best, channel the pop culture figure who best embodies your resolve and respect, whether it's Coach Carter or Yoda.

4 28 1,972 views
A group of young students are standing in a line on dead grass. It's overcast. There are bare-branched trees and a river nearby. They're holding black and green tablets. Their male teacher is holding antlers, letting the students take turns touching it.
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6 Tips for Engaging Capstone Projects

Rather than creating a year-in-review capstone project, consider having students synthesize and personalize what they've learned, bringing it to a new level.

81 2,218 views
A U.S. army soldier in uniform is kneeling, reading to a group of young kids around him.
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Understanding the Needs of Students From Military Families

Children of military and veteran families need to be understand, have their assets celebrated, and be part of a positive school climate. Use the resources we suggest to educate yourself about and identify your military-connected students.

1 1,065 2,464 views
Girl sitting at her desk in deep thought, writing
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7 Reflection Tips for Assessment, Empowerment, and Self-Awareness

Through being reflective about your own teaching practices, model and guide students toward a more reflective approach to their projects, grades, actions, and reactions.

7 308 25,630 views

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Hands-Off Teaching Cultivates Metacognition

Students learn better when their "thinking" includes thinking about the material plus how to dig in, break it apart, understand it, and build on that.

16 4,037 78,614 views
Article

Why Storytelling in the Classroom Matters

Teachers, by their nature, are storytellers. You can improve this skillset with seven steps for engaging younger students through narrative.

16 1,733 77,628 views
Article

Collaborative Team Teaching: Challenges and Rewards

Veteran special ed teacher Marisa Kaplan shares the challenges and rewards of co-teaching, including the fun of having another adult in the classroom.

15 196 77,381 views
Boy looking through books in library stacks
Article

Defining "Best Practice" in Teaching

Teachers stand on the shoulders of giants who developed tried-and-true strategies by testing them out, reflecting on the outcomes, and honing those strategies over decades or longer.

10 683 77,135 views
Article

Back to School: Preparing for Day One

Six tips for helping both new and seasoned teachers have a successful first day of school.

25 835 76,889 views
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Powerful Learning: Studies Show Deep Understanding Derives from Collaborative Methods

Cooperative learning and inquiry-based teaching yield big dividends in the classroom. And now we have the research to prove it.

12 204 76,149 views
Article

New Classroom Questioning Techniques for the Best Year Ever

For students to ask questions, teachers have to start the ball rolling with questions of their own. Check your own methods and discover new resources.

10 1,133 75,410 views

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