Teaching Strategies for Back to School

Highly Effective Teaching Strategies For Back to School Success

For you to live up to your own potential and teach with passion long-term, (and avoid pulling your hair out), you need to decide on your own teaching style and which highly effective teaching strategies you’ll be implementing long before classes start. This should be structured in line with the goals and missions of your school, your administrators, your personal teaching philosophy, and what is realistic in your setting. You would also do well to understand your own unique temperament and that of your students depending on their age and environment. You can then decide on the approach you would structure your classroom around. Whether you want the Expert, Formal Authority, Facilitator, Delegator or Personal Model. You may also choose to use a Teacher-Centered approach or Student-Centered approach.

Teaching Tip #10 - Handling Mistakes & Modeling Responsibility.  Brag about your mistakes. Show your students how to "shrug" off messing up with humor, dignity and tact. They know you aren't perfect already anyway!

Teaching Tip #10 – Model Responsibility

What makes a Teaching Strategy highly effective?

A Highly Effective Teaching Strategy or Technique supports the teacher in delivering rigorous instruction to a highly diverse student body. If the teaching style and strategy you depend on is too focused on a specific technique, for example, on note taking from teacher lectures, then students who do not learn well from that technique are underserved. Even when you are delivering an amazing classroom experience! Nothing frustrated me more as a new teacher than pouring my heart and soul into teaching a class with less than half of the students able to tap into it for real learning.

Teacher-Centered Approach

This focuses on the teacher who is the main authority and knowledge provider. The students are made to passively receive instruction and are scored through routine assessments and tests.

A highly effective teaching strategy supports the teacher in reaching a widely diverse group of learners.

An engaged high school classroom.

Student-Centered Approach

Students are allowed to play an active role in class proceedings. Teacher instruction is given in a combination of formal and informal learning processes and structures. Group projects and class participation are a few of the activities in this kind of model.

To succeed with either of these approaches above, it is necessary to decide on the teaching style that you can work with.

Teaching styles are generally divided into three: Direct Instruction (Teacher based), Inquiry-Based learning and Cooperative Learning (Student based). Let’s take a look at how these styles can be implemented as strategies for classroom success.

Direct Instruction

This style of teaching is more traditional. It requires a lecture based and teacher-led strategy. The teacher is seen as the sole supplier of knowledge and information.

Inquiry Based Learning

Hands-on learning and interaction within the students is encouraged and is a key ingredient of this teaching strategy. Students are encouraged to investigate and find out things for themselves with the guidance of the teacher. The teacher in this sense is seen as a facilitator.

Back To School Highly Effective Teaching Strategies from LeftHandedLearning.com

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Back To School Highly Effective Teaching Strategies from LeftHandedLearning.com

Cooperative Learning and Reciprocal Teaching

This is a particularly unique method that places emphasis on peer-to-peer learning. Group work is encouraged and creates a good sense of community. Students are responsible for their own learning and this strategy s based on the belief that the best and fastest way for students to learn is when they are working with their own peers on study problems. The Reciprocal teaching technique is a major tool of this classroom setting.

Reciprocal teaching specifically works by splitting the students into small groups of four students each. The most common assignment in this case being a reading exercise or session. The students are taught to act as the teacher after watching the teacher model what would be expected of them in the smaller groups. The group discussions are then divided into: summarizing, raising questions, clarifying and predicting with each student taking turns.  Reciprocal learning is particularly good at keeping students engaged.

Reciprocal learning is particularly good at keeping students engaged.

Whatever preferred teaching method or style you choose to implement the most effective over time has been proven to be a combination of the different styles depending on the subjects being taught and the unique demographics of your students.

The {99 Novel} Series of Character and Vocabulary notecards are highly effective teaching resources – they provide an easy way for the teacher to put concrete, visual reminders and answers to questions at the fingertips of only the students who need them. You can view them in detail here – from the Tpt Store featured below.

Looking for more? Learn more here.

So what has worked and not worked for you?

What do you wish you had known when you started teaching?

Join the conversation – Leave us a comment!


Allen Dobkin has been teaching children since 1999 and joined the Kentwood team in 2007. While his official training was in the Social Sciences at Florida Atlantic University, his background in business and technology has enabled him to bring essential twenty-first century skills to the classroom. His effectiveness and ongoing popularity with students and parents has pushed him from Middle School teacher to High School teacher, to High School Principal and finally to School Administrator overseeing the implementation of the Kentwood systems throughout the entire program. Mr. Dobkin has also advocated for Learning Disabled students in the public school system; designed curriculum materials for use in all classrooms; developed educational applications in Microsoft Excel and Google Drive/Docs. He is a published author and avid reader in the realm of speculative fiction.

One comment on “Teaching Strategies for Back to School
  1. Gina Reed says:

    Thanks for being so kind.