One of the commenters on this post on testing Doug Lemov’s techniques asked which ten techniques I made a point of using in the classroom. This is an attempt to answer that question. The numbers are not in order; this is deliberate… the numbers correspond with the techniques list in Lemov’s table of contents. I would provide page numbers, except that I no longer have a paper version of the book. Instead, I have it on the Kindle software for the iPad… the book is resident on both my iPhone and my iPad, so that I have constant access to it.
- Technique 1: No Opt Out
- Technique 4: Format Matters
- Technique 6: Begin with the End
- Technique 15: Circulate
- Technique 19: At Bats
- Technique 22: Cold Call
- Technique 26: Everybody Writes
- Technique 33: On Your Mark
- Technique 37: What to Do
- Technique 49: Normalize Error
- Technique 28: Entry Routine
There are, as you can see by the list, actually eleven techniques. But I found that the first one, Technique 1: No Opt Out, is actually not so much a technique as a requirement. If students are allowed to opt out of an activity, it sets the tone for everything else that follows. The moment I made it clear that a student who got the wrong answer would be made to repeat the right answer from someone else, then everything else followed from that.
I was more lackadaisical about other techniques, though I did try to use them. It turned out to be incredibly hard to keep just ten in mind. One of the techniques is to stand still while giving instructions, but I didn’t always do that effectively. In any case, I hope this is a good jumping-off place for you, my readers.