Strategy of the Week

Universal Design for Learning (UDL) and Instructional Variety

Universal Design for Learning (UDL) and Instructional Variety  

If you were a farmer who had just one gardening tool, how frustrating would your work be? What would happen to the growth of your plants?

This analogy to teaching helps explain why educational frameworks like Universal Design for Learning (UDL) advocate for teachers to develop a variety of strategies to help them reach all students.

And so, in the spirit of instructional variety, we offer you two resource options for this Strategy of the Week:

An interactive version of this teaching-as-gardening analogy.

Teaching as a Gardener

And, a document with descriptions of and resources for using nine different instructional strategies and approaches.

teaching strategy

Try the Interactive Lesson

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A Strategy for Assessing Declarative Knowledge

A Strategy for Assessing Declarative Knowledge

Have you ever had a moment where you couldn’t remember someone’s name? You could describe their features and point them out in a crowd, but their name stayed just outside of your memory.

A Strategy for Assessing Declarative Knowledge

English Language Learners face this challenge regularly in their English vocabulary, and several strategies can help them communicate around the gaps. This 3:40 video highlights how the Show, Don’t Tell strategy supports the assessment of declarative knowledge (or factual knowledge—knowing that something is rather than how to do it) and engagement of students.

This video comes with a downloadable guidebook.

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Facilitating Learning

Are You a Provider, a Facilitator, Or Somewhere in Between?

Educators around the world are increasing the autonomy and responsibility of students as they learn. To make this shift, teachers are beginning to see themselves as facilitators of learning rather than merely providers of content knowledge.

So where would your teaching practice be placed on a continuum of providing to facilitating? This diagnostic quiz from Edivate’s Teachers as Facilitators learning experience can give you an indication—and recommend strategies to help you move more towards facilitating learning.

diagnostic quiz

Share out: Do you have an activity or lesson plan that requires you to facilitate? Share it with us!

Try the Quiz

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Flexible Pacing – Answering the Frequently Asked Questions

Teachers and Students Answer Common Questions about Flexible Pacing

Giving students the flexibility to move through a unit at their own pace might sound like madness. Luckily, there are methods behind the madness, as these teachers and students can attest.

This video FAQ page from Edivate’s Flexible Pacing learning experience features brief interviews with teachers and students answering common questions about what flexible pacing is and how it works.Flexible Pacing Questions

Share out: Is there a question you have about flexible pacing that isn’t answered by the FAQ page? Let us know!

Watch the Flexible Pacing Video FAQ's

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Learn by Doing: Webb’s Depth of Knowledge

How Deep Is Your Knowledge? Cognitive Complexity in the Classroom

Norman Webb’s Depth of Knowledge model* has become as familiar a sight to educators as its counterpart, Bloom’s Taxonomy. Both help educators gauge the cognitive complexity of their instructional activities.

depth of knowledgeblooms taxonomy

This sorting activity from the Edivate Mastery-Based Assessment learning experience will help you become familiar with the cognitive complexity of various task types (e.g., list, evaluate, draw conclusions) so you can ensure that your students are drawing on higher-order thinking skills in your lessons. Simply drag a task type verb from the green rectangle on the left to the level (section) of the DOK Wheel where you believe it fits. If you get it wrong, an explanation will appear to help you move the verb to the right spot. Enjoy your on-the-fly learning!

depth-of-knowledge-edivate

http://training.schoolimprovement.com/courses/mastery-based-assessments/assessment-type-chart/

Bonus questions: Which DOK level does this online activity represent? What might make it more “rigorous”?

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Components of a Successful Performance Task Rubric

Rubrics – A Super-Tool!

Components of a Successful Performance Task Rubric 

Imagine that you are settling down after a good day’s work. Unexpectedly, your phone rings. It’s your old colleague Crystal, and she needs your help. Her performance task rubrics have been altered! Can you help save the day?

This superhero style comic book interactive from Edivate’s Multiple Ways to Demonstrate Learning learning experience outlines the components of a good performance task rubric, giving you the tools to help Crystal and save the day!

Components of a Successful Performance Task Rubric

Share out: What is a must-have criterion for your rubrics? Let us know!

Try the Rubrics Tool

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Jump Start Learning With a New Classroom Arrangement

Jump Start Learning With a New Classroom Arrangement – Try Our Free Tool

Reengage learning with a fresh new classroom layout.

Have you ever looked around your classroom—the desks, chairs, tables, and shelves—and thought, “This place needs a makeover?” If you have, this classroom layout tool can help you plan a room layout that not only freshens your classroom up, but facilitates personalized learning and boosts student engagement.

Creating a brand new floor plan is simple and easy, and you can get started right away by accessing the tool through Edivate’s Classroom Climate learning experience.

changing your classroom

Share out: Do you have a particular piece of furniture in your class that your students really enjoy? What is it and why do they students like it so much?

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Diversify Your Formative Assessment With This Interactive Goldmine!

Diversify Your Formative Assessment With This Interactive Tool

 How Do I Formatively Assess? Let Me Count the Ways

As a teacher, you probably have a few go-to formative assessment strategies, like write/pair/share, fist to five, and exit tickets. It’s efficient to stick with the same ones day after day, but in doing so you might miss indicators of student understanding that your current methods don’t measure. So how can you diversify your repertoire?

With the Diversify Your Assessment-O-Tron (DYAOT), of course! This interactive tool allows you to explore a range of formative assessment structures. Click the Randomize! button to generate an assessment option you’ve likely never thought of before. And when one comes up that will work with your students…jackpot!

Diversity Formative Assessment

Try the Tool

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Using Chants and Songs to Scaffold Content

Using Chants and Songs to Scaffold Content 

What letter comes after “P” in the alphabet? What sound does the duck make on Ol’ McDonald’s farm? How does a bill (sitting there on Capitol Hill) become a law? Once the connection is made, it can be hard to separate a song from its content.

Students are more likely to internalize what they are learning when teachers scaffold the content using a chant or song. This is especially true of English language learners. Watch this 2:00 video to see a few examples of chants and songs in action.

Using Chants and Songs to Scaffold Content

Share out: What is a song or chant that your students enjoy? Let us know what it is and why they enjoy it!

This video comes with a downloadable guidebook.

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Making Hallway Transitions Easy and Efficient

Making Hallway Transitions Easy and Efficient

Venturing out of the classroom can be an exciting time for students. They might be going to lunch, recess, the library, or some other interesting location. The actions of excited students can range from a small smile to running in circles and screaming as loud as possible. Depending on what they are doing, some students could be a distraction to their neighbors or other classrooms while transitioning from one location to another.

Establishing expectations and procedures for hallway etiquette will minimize distractions and create a positive school climate. Watch this 2:36 video to learn some management strategies that make hallway etiquette attainable for all students.

hallway procedures

 

Share out: Do you have a unique trick or strategy that makes hallway transitions more efficient? Share it with us!

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