Friday, October 25, 2013

Teach Like a Champion
Technique #41

“The first minute, when students cross the threshold into the classroom, you must remind them of the expectations.  It’s the critical time to establish rapport, set the tone, and reinforce the first steps in a routine that makes excellence habitual.”

KEY IDEA: The most important moment to set expectations in your classroom is the minute when your classroom students enter.

The key to Threshold:
·       Find a way to greet your students by standing in the physical threshold of the classroom.
·       Use the greeting to engage students briefly and build rapport.
·       You can set the stage for Do Now (technique #29)

Threshold should accomplish two things:
·       Establish a personal connections between you and your students
·       Reinforce your classroom expectations.

From Teach Like a Champion by Doug Lemove (Jossey Bass, 2010)

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Teach Like a Champion
Technique #40
Sweat the Details

“Clean up clutter, keep desk rows tidy, make sure shirts are tucked in and hats are off, and you will decrease the likelihood that you will have to deal with more serious issues because you will decrease your students’ perception that those things might be permissible..”

KEY IDEA: To reach the highest standards, you must create the perception of order.

The key is PREPARATION – putting systems in place in advance that make accomplishing the goal quick and easy:
·       Want desks in neat rows?  Put tape marks on the floor so students can “check their desks” back onto their marks.
·       Want your students to do neat and tidy homework?  Homework standards rubrics – while collecting occasionally give feedback to students.
·       Want your students to keep their materials neatly in their binders and never lose them? Put materials in binders as a group the first 50 times, teaching and modeling as you go.
·       Want your students to work carefully on their seat work? Circulate as students work, making corrections as you go.
·       Want your students to raise their hands quietly and crisply to foster orderly participation? Teach them how to raise their hands and give frequent reminders.

From Teach Like a Champion by Doug Lemove (Jossey Bass, 2010)

Friday, October 11, 2013

Teach Like a Champion
Technique #39
Do It Again

“Getting lots of practice helps students improve, so giving them more practice is the perfect response to a situation where they show they’re not up to speed at a simple task.”

KEY IDEA: Doing it again and doing it right, or better, or perfect is often the best consequence.

7 reasons Do It Again is effective:
·       It shortens the feedback loop.  Requiring a student who failed to successfully complete a basic task you’ve shown them how to do immediately after, while the original action is fresh in a student’s mind, results in the action and reaction being more deeply associated in his or her memory.
·       Sets a standard of excellence, not just compliance.  Do it Again is ideal for times when students do something acceptably but could do it better.
·       There is no administrative follow-up. No forms or phone calls, the consequence is done as soon as the goal is reached.
·       There is group accountability. Technique is especially effective as a group consequence.
·       Ends with success
·       There are logical consequences. 
·       It is reusable.

From Teach Like a Champion by Doug Lemove (Jossey Bass, 2010)

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Teach Like a Champion
Technique #38
Strong Voice

“There are five techniques anyone, even the seemingly meekest and mildest of novices, can use.  Using them will put you in a position to establish control, command, and the benign authority that makes the use of excessive consequences unnecessary.”

KEY IDEA: Some teachers have “it”, they enter a room and are instantly in command.  Students who moments before seemed beyond the appeal of reason suddenly take their seats to await instructions. 

Skills of “it” teachers:
·       Economy of Language.  Fewer words are stronger than more. 
·       Do not talk over.  Every student has the right and responsibility to hear you.  Wait until there is no other talking or rustling.
·       Do not Engage; avoid engaging in other topics until you have satisfactory resolved the topic you initiated.
·       Square Up/Stand Still.  Direct eye contact, use body language – leaning in close, standing straight, depending on request.
·       Quiet Power.  Get slower and quieter when you want control.

From Teach Like a Champion by Doug Lemove (Jossey Bass, 2010)