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Instructional Tools

Teaching, Skill Building, and Assessment Strategies
Learning Lingo

Teaching, Skill Building, and Assessment Strategies

Strategies Description or Engagement Synonyms & Keyword Search Terms
1-2-3 quick pairs of students determine the three most important items from an assigned reading and compare the information with another pair of students who read the same passage; a new list of three important items are determined by the four students 1-2-3 quick
alphabetizing arrange words or phrases in alphabetical order alphabetizing, alphabetize
argumentation structured argumentation provides an opportunity for students to demonstrate the differences between a claim, evidence, and the use of reasoning for critical analysis and in some cases decision making; useful in science and social studies, particularly with the crossover between the disciplines in socioscience argumentation, socioscience, debate
brochure two or three-fold informative paper document created by students to display information or advertise an event brochure, flyer, pamphlet, leaflet, newspaper advertisement
case study providing an opportunity for students to apply what they learn in the classroom to real-life experiences case study, case studies, case method
cause and effect identification and explanation the interaction between two events or ideas whereas the action of one results in the other cause and effect
character sociograms five or more circles with names of historical characters, countries, or events in each with labeled arrows to depict relationship between each circle character sociograms
close reading silent reading of a text to focus on significant details to create a deep understanding of the text's meaning close reading
comparison/contrast with timeline examination of two views from an assigned event to include a Venn diagram noting each point outside of the circles comparison/contrast with timeline
concept mapping a graphic organizer that includes concepts and the relationships among the concepts usually enclosed in boxes or circles; learn more about concept maps. concept mapping, concept map, concept web
conference an opportunity to assess student thinking as student verbalizes their knowledge conference, interview
cooperative learning instructional approaches in which students work together in small groups to accomplish common learning goal  cooperative learning, collaborative learning
Cornell notes a systematic format for condensing and organizing notes note taking
counting to name or list (the units of a group or collection) one by one in order to determine a total  counting, tally marks
cross-the-line Pose a controversial statement and ask students who agree with the statement to go to one side of the room and those do not to go to the other side. Place a chair on each side from which the students may speak. Only the student in the chair may speak. Sides take turns speaking and as speakers make their points, students may change sides as often as they like. cross-the-line, philosophical chairs, critical thinking
debate organization and discussion of a controversial issue whereas students are asked to speak either in favor or against the issue; two groups will speak affirmatively or negatively about the selected issue debate, argumentation
demonstration presentation performed by the student to convey their mastery of subject content demonstration, performance
discussion engaging students in discussion deepens their learning and motivation by propelling them to develop their own views and hear their own voices discussion, explanation
experiment scientific procedure undertaken to make a discovery, test a hypothesis, or demonstrate a known fact experiment, experiments, lab, labs
fishbowl discussion a collaborative engaging method for facilitating discussions. TeachLikeThis video fishbowl discussion, panel discussion
formative assessment a technique that uses questioning, without a summative assessment or grade, to inform instruction and provide the learner with timely or immediate feedback formative assessment
futures wheel a way of organizing thinking and questioning about the future – a kind of structured brainstorming mind map, concept map
game physical or mental activity or contest that has rules to engage a learner with specific outcomes game, games, gamify, gamification, app
grab bag The class is divided into groups of two's or four's and assigned to collect a bag of artifacts/pictures (4 or 6 items). Each person in the group needs to contribute one or two items. For example, each group could be assigned a different event on a timeline and place related artifacts into a bag. Groups then swap bags and try to determine the time period or event the other group was assigned. Bags are passed from group to group until all bags have been investigated by each group. The class then discusses each group’s guesses for each bag. grab bag
graphic organizer visual map or diagram used to learn a concept, i.e., concept maps, and mind maps, and (20) more graphic organizers, webs, concept maps, mind maps, debate organizer, diagrams, flow diagram, storyboards, fishbone diagrams, mind web,T charts, Y charts, cycle diagrams, Venn diagrams, KWL charts, character sociograms
graph a diagram representing a system of connections or interrelations among two or more things by a number of dots, lines, bars, etc. graph, graphs, chart, scatter plot, infographic, bar graph, line graph, pie graph, circle graph
group presentation collaboration students are divided into groups, each group selects a topic, does the research, discusses, critiques, etc. and together come up with a way to present the material to other students
group presentation
hands-on activity designing activities so that students are actively involved or engaged in the project or experiment hands on, hands-on, hands on participation, hands-on participation, hands on learning, hands-on learning, active learning, experiential learning
image analysis students make observations of photos, maps, infographics, and other artifacts to make inferences and evaluations concerning the artifact  
infographic graphic visual representations of information, data or knowledge intended to present information quickly and clearly, a project that may be used to demonstrate learning on a topic infographic
jigsaw a cooperative learning strategy to help create students own learning Students are placed in groups and assigned different pieces of information regarding a topic. Students from each group with the same assigned information join and share, discuss, and research ideas about the information and then return back to their original group. The original group will "piece together" a clear understanding about the topic based on the information gathered from each sub-topic group. Cult of Pedagogy video. jigsaw
journaling factual information recorded by the student that is less personal and more focused on content to reflect their learning through reflective writing journaling, learning logs
K-W-L Chart What I know, What I want to know, and What I learned - a type of graphic organizer used to frame instruction and assess learning K-W-L, KWL, KWL chart, graphic organizer
lecture speaking to students to convey information teacher centered, lecture, direct instruction
mnemonics association techniques used to help students remember some aspect of reading mnemonics
group mural on large poster paper student together create a large mural depicting an event mural
newspaper reporter students research and write a newspaper article about an event or issue newspaper, writing
paraphrasing orally retell or summarize what happened in a story  summarizing, summarize
partner reading a cooperative learning strategy in which two students work together to read an assigned text reading
podcast in teams of two or three students select a topic, conduct research, select someone to interview (if need be) and record a podcast podcast or radio broadcast
portfolio self-assessment individual samples of student work demonstrating what has been learned over time portfolio self-assessment
possibilities-factors problem solving technique using graphic organizer problem solving, decision making
post-it-pile-it technique for categorization and prioritization using post-it notes, see a video demonstration.
pre-reading prior to reading the main ideas are "previewed" connecting the subject to student background knowledge reading
phenomena-based learning Natural phenomena are observable events that occur in the universe that we can use our science knowledge to explain or predict. A storyline is developed in phenomena-based learning. Episodes are part of the storyline and are used to sequence instruction, driven by student questions, with the goal of students explaining a phenomenon. phenomena
projects (assigned - group or individual) create a PowerPoint, use a video camera to create a documentary or commercial, develop a virtual reality or augmented reality program, develop an advertisement, create a game, make a collage, create a sculpture or model, draw and label a map, develop a timeline, write a newspaper article or editorial, create a display or poster project
problem-based learning (PBL) an instructional strategy in which students work cooperatively to investigate and resolve an ill-structured problem based on real-world issues or situations problem-based learning, problem based learning, project-based learning, project based learning, pbl, student centered, critical thinking
project-based learning (PBL) students challenges students to "learn to learn," working in groups to seek solutions to real world problems; students work cooperatively over time to create a product, presentation, or performance. The two essential components of project-based learning are an engaging and motivating question and a product that meaningfully addresses that question problem-based learning, problem based learning, project-based learning, project based learning, pbl, student centered, critical thinking
quick write used to develop writing fluency by asking students to respond in 2-10 minutes to an open-ended question or prompt before, during, or after reading quick write
questioning questions around instruction designed to engage or assess student understanding, may be done orally or written questioning, multiple choice questions, open-ended questions, essential questions, higher order questions
read aloud strategy in which a teacher sets aside time to read orally to students on a consistent basis from texts above their independent reading level but at their listening level teacher read aloud, read aloud
readers theater a strategy for developing reading fluency. It involves children in oral reading through reading parts in scripts readers theater
role-playing students engages in a simulation and select or create a role to share their point of view or perform their role role-playing, skit
round-robin assessment questions type of assessment where questions are placed in the middle of an index card and answers are written randomly on the upper right hand corner of the card making sure not to place the answer to the question on the same card. All cards are passed out and students take turns reading the question from their card while others check their card for the correct answer. If they have the correct answer their hand raises and will share with the class and takes the next turn to read their question. round-robin assessment questions, round robin
T-chart are a type of chart, a graphic organizer in which a student lists and examines two facets of a topic, like the pros and cons associated with it, its advantages and disadvantages, facts vs. opinions, etc. Sticky notes can be used or tally marks for the facets. graphic organizer, decision matrix
sequencing list of numbers, objects or events placed in a special order  sequential order
shared reading students join in or share the reading resulting in an interactive reading experience that is guided and supported by a teacher who explicitly models the skills of proficient reading, including reading with fluency and expression reading
simulation the imitation of the operation of a real-world process or system over time; simulating something first requires that a model be developed; this model represents the key characteristics or behaviors/functions of the selected physical or abstract system or process; see teaching with simulations simulation, simulations, role play
Socratic method a form of cooperative argumentative dialogue between individuals, based on asking and answering questions to stimulate critical thinking and to draw out ideas and underlying presumptions questioning techniques, critical thinking
sorting to arrange or group in a special way by amount, size, type, texture, or color sorting
technology tools online tools used to enhance and engage students with content technology, web, Internet, phone, mobile device
text, talk, time students discuss a reading passage as an entire group after reading it on their own, and use hand signals to indicate when they would like to talk reading
think, pair, share students work together to solve a problem or answer a question about an assigned reading or question: students (1) think individually (2) pair with a partner and (3) then share ideas with classmates think, pair, share, think-pair-share, turn and talk
tug of war strategy for students to think of "tugs" or reasons why they support a certain side of a dilemma and to think of reasons on the other side of the dilemma tug of war
virtual reality an interactive computer-generated experience taking place within a simulated environment Google expedition, VR, 360 video, 360 photo, virtual tour
wordle an online tool used to explain text content and connect to vocabulary wordle, word cloud
word problem a mathematical problem presented as text, usually as a narrative or story with varying number of sentences to be solved by using operations such as addition, subtraction, multiplication, or division word problem, word problems
word search a puzzle consisting of letters arranged in a grid containing several hidden words written in any direction word search, word find, vocabulary
word wall an ongoing, organized display of key words that provides visual reference for students throughout a unit of study  words, word wall, vocabulary
writing opportunity to engage thoughts and critical thinking in to the practice or written communication written, writing, critical thinking, cognitive process