By Teachers, For Teachers
There are some teaching strategies that educators just can’t live without. These can be simple things like making sure every student understands the concept they are being taught, to making sure that you are incorporating movement into every lesson. Some of these teaching strategies you probably use every day and do not even realize it. Here are five specific teaching strategies that many effective educators incorporate into their daily lesson plans.
It is extremely important to make sure that all students have a firm grasp of the information that is being taught before you move on in the lesson. The last thing that you want to do is to move forward with the lesson with some of your students still in question. An easy way to make sure that all students get it is to give them a red and green card to place on their desk. If they understand and are ready to move on, then they place the green card facing up. If they still do not understand, then they place the red card face up. The students who have their green card facing up can move on to independent practice, and the students who have the red card facing up meet you at the back table for further explanation.
Long gone are the days that students would sit still for lessons. After many studies were conducted on students being sedentary for long periods of time, we now know that we need to incorporate movement to keep children engaged longer. Effective teachers get their students up and moving and learning by making sure that every lesson has some sort of way students can move their bodies. From rotating learning stations to brain breaks that require students to do yoga poses, educators know that the more their students move, the longer they will stay engaged in their lesson.
As a teacher, one of your many jobs is to make sure that all of your students are staying on task. This requires you to constantly keep your eye on every child. When you do catch a student who is off task, a simple tap on the shoulder or a glare from across the room should suffice. Public humiliation and calling that student’s name aloud is unnecessary. It’s important to let your students know that when you do these two things, this means they are off task and now it’s their job to correct their behavior. If you have to continue to glare or tap their shoulder, then they will be further repercussions.
An effective way to get children talking is to have them work with their peers. Peer partnering has many benefits, from teaching children socialization skills to participating in activities where students can learn from one another. Working collaboratively with others helps students learn to give and receive feedback, as well as learn how to evaluate their own learning. A great way to make sure peer partnering works effectively is to teach students how to interact while in the group. Here are a few helpful prompts to keep posted for all students to reference.
Many of you may not realize it, but when you ask your students different-leveled questions, you are in fact scaffolding. A great way to make sure that all students are using their higher-order thinking skills is to scaffold the guided practice so that the difficulty will increase with each question. All students start with the same question, but the difficulty gets harder as the questions increase. This is a great strategy to use with all of your students to see where each student may struggle with the concept.
These are just five of many daily teaching strategies effective teachers use to make sure their classroom is a productive one. What are your favorite go-to teaching strategies to use in the classroom? Please share your favorite daily strategies in the comment section below, we would love to hear all about them.
Janelle Cox is an education writer who uses her experience and knowledge to provide creative and original writing in the field of education. Janelle holds a Master's of Science in Education from the State University of New York College at Buffalo. She is also the Elementary Education Expert for About.com, as well as a contributing writer to TeachHUB.com and TeachHUB Magazine. You can follow her at Twitter @Empoweringk6ed, or on Facebook at Empowering K6 Educators.