In his third chapter, Lemov describes methods to help structure and deliver your lessons, according to the basic structure of I/We/You. Most lessons will be structured in a distinctive pattern progressing from direct instruction via demonstration (I) to guided practice together (We) to independent practice.
#12. The Hook
The hook is a quick, energetic, exciting way to introduce the lesson to your students. It may not be necessary for every lesson, but can often captivate your audience. It doesn’t water down material but “prepares students to be brought up to the material”. Ideas for good hooks are many, such as:
- media such as picture or video,
- analogy (chips and salsa on limiting-reactant day)
- status (descriptive praise)
- student challenge
#13 Name The Steps
Be explicitly clear regarding the steps on how to do problems or meet objectives. Think through the following when naming the steps:
- Identify the steps – and try to keep the number of steps under seven
- Make them sticky – try named steps, a mnemonic, a song, or a prop as reminders
- Build the steps – try to find a way to incorporate the building and coming up with the steps into the lesson
- Use two stairways, the General procedure, and the specific problems when demonstrating problems, and helping with guided practice
#14. Board = Paper
Students need to learn how to take notes. Help them by having an expectation that what you write on the board (or overhead) they need to write, and scaffold them appropriately
Move strategically throughout the room, during all parts of the room, bearing in mind these ideas:
- Circulate early. You own the room, at all times. Circulating only when problems arise will become obvious.
- Full Access Required. You should be able to get anywhere, anytime. Keep pathways free and clear.
- Engage as you circulate – both correcting but as importantly praising or just making contact
- Move systematically, but unpredictably.
- Position for power by aligning yourself to see the majority of the room at all times.
#16. Break It Down
Bridge the gap between student misunderstanding and the objective at hand. When a student shows a gap, offer hints or bridges such as:
- Providing examples
- Providing context – where they’ve seen things before
- Providing a rule
- Provide a missing step
- Rollback – simply repeating a student’s answer back often makes mistakes clear, and can be done with emphasis on wrong parts if necessary
- Eliminate false choices
Cause the students to do as much of the cognitive work as possible. The proportion of the thinking the students do can be called your Ratio. Be sure to increase both the participation and thinking ratios. Some techniques to help improve your ratio are:
- Unbundle – ask a question as many smaller parts
- Half-statement: “So the next statement is…_____”
- What’s next: ask questions about the process and the product
- Feign ignorance
- Repeated examples – ask for another example with stipulations
- Rephrase or add-on
- Why’s and Hows
- Supporting Evidence
- Batch Process: allow several students to answer before interpreting. Think volleyball instead of ping-pong.
- Discussion Objectives: provide clear objectives for discussions and refer to them when off-track
#18. Check for Understanding…
…And do something about it right away. Be sure to have good sampling, from several students, preferably at a cross-section of abilities. Don’t stop once a right answer is given, but ask several more to get a representative of the larger class.
#19. At Bats
Simply put, to improve in baseball, what is necessary most is many at bats – many attempts. Show the students how to do something, and provide them with as many chances as possible to ingrain the skill. Be sure to:
- Teach first, until they can do it on their own
- Provide multiple variations and formats,
- Provide opportunities for enrichment and differentiation
#20. Exit Ticket
Provide a quick question or sequence of questions that each student must hand you before leaving. Use these as data to see if the students have mastered or if you need to revisit the next day.
#21. Take A Stand
After a student answers, ask every student to decide if the answer is right or wrong, either by show of hands, noises, thumbs, etc. You should with predictable consistency ask students to defend their stances.