Teaching, Skill Building, and Assessment Strategies

This wiki-toolbox has been developed for educators looking to enhance their instruction with engaging research-based, student-centered learning approaches, and authentic or performance-based assessments. Most of the strategies can be used for instruction or assessment.
Description or Engagement
Synonyms & Keyword Search Terms
arrange words or phrases in alphabetical order
alphabetizing, alphabetize
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
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
to name or list (the units of a group or collection) one by one in order to determine a total
counting, tally marks
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
presentation performed by the student to convey their mastery of subject content
demonstration, performance
engaging students in discussion deepens their learning and motivation by propelling them to develop their own views and hear their own voices
discussion, explanation
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
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
physical or mental activity or contest that has rules to engage a learner with specific outcomes
game, games, gamify, gamification, app
graphic organizer
visual map or diagram used to learn a concept, i.e., concept maps, and mind maps, and 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
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
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
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.
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
speaking to students to convey information
teacher centered, lecture, direct instruction
association techniques used to help students remember some aspect of reading
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
portfolio self-assessment
individual samples of student workdemonstrating what has been learned over time
portfolio self-assessment
prior to reading the main ideas are "pre-viewed" connecting the subject to student background knowledge
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
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
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
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
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,
to arrange or group in a special way by amount, size, type, texture, or color
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
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
voice thread
interactive collaboration and sharing tool enabling users to add images, documents, and videos so other users can add voice, text, audio file, or video comments.
voice thread
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
opportunity to engage thoughts and critical thinking in to the practice or written communication
written, writing, critical thinking, cognitive process
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