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Effective Teaching Strategies

Strategies for Direct Instruction

  • Specify clear lesson objectives
  • Teach directly to those objectives
  • Make learning as concrete and meaningful as possible
  • Provide relevant guided practice
  • Provide independent practice
  • Provide transfer practice activities

Strategies for Students with Disabilities *

  • Sequence – Break down the task, step by step prompts.
  • Drill-repetition and practice-review – Daily testing of skills, repeated practice, daily feedback.
  • Segment – Break down targeted skill into smaller units and then synthesize the parts into a whole.
  • Direct question and response – Teacher asks process-related questions and/or content-related questions.
  • Control the difficulty or processing demands of a task – Task is sequenced from easy to difficult and only necessary hints or probes are provided.
  • Technology – Use a computer, structured text, flow charts to facilitate presentation, emphasis is on pictorial representations.
  • Group Instruction – Instruction occurs in a small group, students and/or teacher interact with the group.
  • Supplement teacher and peer involvement – Use homework, parents, or others to assist in instruction.
  • Strategy clues – Reminders to use strategies or multi-steps, the teacher verbalizes problem solving or procedures to solve, instruction uses think-aloud models.

*Excerpted from Swanson, H.L. (1999). Learning Disabilities Research and Practice, 14(3).

Council for Exceptional Children

Provided in partnership with The Council for Exceptional Children.


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Highlights

Videos
Do your students love videos? We have a growing collection of videos (including related activities) for holidays and events, including: women's history, Memorial Day, Independence Day, slavery & the Civil War, U.S. Presidents, handwashing awareness, the Common Core, American History, and the environment. Enjoy!

May Calendar of Events
May is full events that you can incorporate into your standard curriculum. Our Educators' Calendar outlines activities for each event, including: Backyard Games Week (5/18-25), Buy a Musical Instrument Day (5/22), and Memorial Day (5/25). Plus, celebrate Asian-Pacific-American Heritage Month, Inventors Month, Physical Fitness & Sports Month, and Water Safety Month!

Teaching with Comics: Galactic Hot Dogs
Reach reluctant readers and English-language learners with comics! Our original teaching guides to the Galactic Hot Dogs comic series (chapters 1-4 and 5-8), as found on Funbrain.com, will take students on a cosmic adventure while engaging their creative minds. Plus, find even more activities for teaching with comics, featuring many other classic stories.

Now available: Galactic Hot Dogs in print! Buy it at bookstores now.

Poptropica Teaching Guides
Poptropica is one of the Internet's most popular sites for kids—and now it's available as an app for the iPad! It's not just a place to play games; each of the islands featured on the site provides a learning opportunity. Check out our teaching guides to four of Poptropica's islands: 24 Carrot Island, Time Tangled Island, Mystery Train Island, and Mythology Island.