What makes an instructional strategy effective?
What makes an instructional strategy student-centered?
Participants will explore a variety of student-centered instructional strategies.
Participants will identify and discuss what makes an instructional strategy student-centered.
Participants will apply cross-curricular strategies in the secondary classroom.
Presentation Slides (attached)
Magnetic Statements (attached)
Document Packet Set (attached; one per participant)
Pass The Problem
Device with access to the internet
Welcome participants, and briefly introduce yourself and the professional development session using the attached Presentation Slides.
After introductions, go to slide 3, with the session objectives and introduce those to participants. Once objectives have been stated, use this time to explain the Document Set Packet and ensure that each participant has one. Explain to participants that the first page, labeled Note Catcher, will be used throughout the session as a place for them to reflect after each strategy us modeled.
Go to slide 4 and inform participants that they will be participating in the Magnetic Statements strategy. Explain to participants that they will find five statements around the room that represents the answer to the following question: "What does student-centered learning mean to you?". Invite participants to stand up and move towards the statement/answer that they are attracted to the most.
Display slide 5 with the question and instructions for the following step. Once participants have gathered towards a statement, have members in the group discuss among themselves what drew them the most towards this statement. You can further the discussion by asking participants to think of an example of how the statement they were drawn towards looks like in their classroom. Once participants have discussed, invite groups to choose a representative to share out their example and what they discussed.
After participants have shared, ask them to return back to their seats. Transition to slide 6, and have participants turn to the first page in their document set labeled Note Catcher. Read the question on the slide, "How can you use this strategy to foster student-centered learning in your classroom?".
Invite participants to reflect on the question and jot their thoughts down on the Note Catcher in the "How can I use it?" section. There is also a section for participants to reflect on how the strategy was used during the session, which you can have them begin with this section. Once participants have come to a stopping point, invite a few participants to share out how they could use this strategy in their classroom.
Following the share out, turn to slide 7 and display the essential questions for the session and share them with participants.
Transition to slide 8, explain that during this presentation several strategies will be highlighted that all support a student-centered culture in the classroom. During this time explain that each strategy will showcase a core content as an example however, the strategy is not limited to just that content area. Invite participants to reflect on how the strategy can be used in their classroom, with their content, as it is being showcased.
Go to slide 9, "Why-Lighting". Explain that they will be participating in this instructional strategy, which can be used to engage students in active reading, interpretation, summarization, and the reflection process.
Explain to participants that for this strategy, they will be reading a handout labeled Student-Centered Learning, which can be found on their page 2 of the Document Packet Set. Participants will read the handout, and as they read the text they will highlight passages they deem important to their understanding of a question or prompt posed by the instructor. For this session the prompt/question can be found on slide 9. Read the question out loud to the participants and remind them it can also be found on the top of their handout. For context the following is the prompt:
"Highlight information that is important to you and your understanding of student-centered learning."
As they are highlighting, invite participants to write a brief explanation of why they highlighted what they did in the margins. Give participants a few minutes to read the handout and complete their why-lighting. Once participants have finished, invite a few participants to share out examples of what they highlighted and the explanations they wrote down.
Once participants have share out, move to slide 10 and have participants turn to the Note Catcher in the beginning. Read the question on the slide, "How can you use this strategy to foster student-centered learning in your classroom?".
Invite participants to reflect on the question again, this time considering Why-Lighting as the strategy, and have them jot their thoughts in the "How can I use it?" section. Remind them that there is also a section to reflect on how the strategy was used during the session. Once participants have come to a stopping point, invite a few participants to share out how they could use Why-Lighting in their classroom.
Transition to the next activity and move to slide 11. Begin by introducing the next strategy, Pass the Problem and use slide 11 to explain the following information regarding the purpose of the strategy. This strategy is designed to encourage collaboration among peers by allowing them to work through a multi-step problem in pairs. Students use critical thinking skills to solve the problem and justify their reasoning.
Now that you have explained the purpose of the strategy, move to slide 12 with instruction for the participants to partake in the strategy. Have participants turn to page 3 of the Document Packet Set, labeled Pass the Problem, where participants will be practicing the strategy.
Have them turn to an elbow partner, and pair together to work through the math problem. Explain that each person will assume a role "student A" and "student B". With their elbow partner, they will take turns going back and forth simplifying the mathematical expression. Participant A will write the first step of the problem, then pass it to participant B for the next step. They will go back and forth until the problem is solved. Encourage participants as they pass the paper back in forth to check each other's work.
Once participants have share out, move to slide 13 and have participants turn to the Note Catcher. Read the question on the slide, "How can you use this strategy to foster student-centered learning in your classroom?".
Invite participants to reflect on the question again, this time considering Pass the Problem as the strategy, and have them jot their thoughts in the "How can I use it?" section. Remind them that there is also a section to reflect on how the strategy was used during the session. Once participants have come to a stopping point, invite a few participants to share out how they could use Pass the Problem in their classroom.
Transition to the next activity and move to slide 14. Introduce the next strategy, Fishbone, and use slide 14 to explain the following information regarding the purpose of the strategy. This strategy is designed to encourage critical thinking by serving as a brainstorming or organizational tool, and also helps guide students to examine the causes of a particular effect or outcome.
Have participants turn to page 4 of the Document Packet Set, labeled Fishbone Diagram with a sample diagram for participants to follow along as you explain the strategy. The instruction for participants can be found on slide 14 for you to remain on this slide as you explain how to use this strategy.
Explain that the "head" of the fishbone is where the effect/outcome is written ahead of time usually a topic predetermined by the teacher based on what they are covering. For the example in this presentation our effect/outcome is "Many species of elephants are endangered."
For the "fishbones" participants will record factors that would contribute to this effect or outcome. For the example on the handout, a few examples have already been pre-filled. Explain that in the classroom participants can decide if they would like to provide pre-filled examples.
Once the strategy has been explained, invite participants to turn to their elbow partners and discuss some of the possible factors that contribute to the effect on page 4 the Fishbone Diagram. Provide time for participants to discuss factors with elbow partners and fill in the remaining spaces.
Once participants have filled in the remaining fishbones, if you are keeping the original effect/outcome move to slide 15 with an example of a pre-filled fishbone for participants to review how this could look completed.
Now that you have shared an example of a completed diagram, transition to slide 16 and have participants return to their Note Catcher. Read the question on the slide, "How can you use this strategy to foster student-centered learning in your classroom?"
Invite participants to reflect on the question again, this time considering Fishbone as the strategy, and have them jot their thoughts in the "How can I use it?" section. Remind them that there is also a section to reflect on how the strategy was used during the session. Once participants have finished, invite a few participants to share out how they could use Fishbone in their classroom.
Transition to the next activity and move to slide 17. Introduce the final strategy for this session, What Do You Meme?, and use slide 17 to introduce the information regarding the purpose of the strategy. This strategy is designed to serve as a communication tool allowing for students to reflect on a topic and demonstrate their understanding.
For this portion of the session, participates can use a laptop or a cellphone to create the meme. Begin by assigning the topic participants should reflect on. For this session, the example is for a social studies classroom and the topic assigned is two constitutional amendments. The 18th and 19th Amendments. A short definition of each amendment can be found on the slide to be share out with participants.
Instruct participants to go to the website Make a Meme using their laptops or cellphone. A QR code directly leading to the site can be found on the Note Catcher at the beginning of the Document Packet Set under the "What do you Meme" section. Once participants have reached the site walk them through how to create a meme by showcasing it to them on a separate tab.
Begin by searching through the image log or by searching a blank meme in the search engine.
Once an image has been selected fill in the text box
Press "make the meme"
Once the Meme is created it can be screengrabbed or saved as an image.
Now that you have gone through the steps with participants have them create a meme that demonstrates their understanding of the sample topic, the 18th and 19th Amendment. Participants should be prepared to share their Meme and explain the reasoning behind it.
Once time has been given for participants to create their own meme turn to slide 18 with a sample meme. Invite a few participants to share their memes with the people at their table/or with an elbow partner and explain what they created. If you wish to have them share with the whole group as well, do so during this time.
Once participants have shared out, move to slide 19 and have participants turn to the Note Catcher in the beginning. Read the question on the slide, "How can you use this strategy to foster student-centered learning in your classroom?".
Invite participants to reflect on the question again, this time considering What Do You Meme? and jotting their thoughts in the "How can I use it?" section. Remind them that there is also a section to reflect on how the strategy was used during the session. Once participants have come to a stopping point, invite a few participants to share out how they could use What Do You Meme in their classroom.
Transition to slide 20. At this point of the presentation, all the strategies have been covered and participants should have a completed Note Catcher of how they could use these strategies in their classrooms. To reflect the overall presentation, pose the question found on the slide to participants and invite a few participants to share their thoughts.
"How can these strategies foster a student-centered classroom?"
Once participants have shared out, follow up by asking if anyone would like to share which strategy they think they could implement right away in the classroom.
Move to slide 21 this slide explains where all the strategies used in this session can be found plus all the other published strategies. Open a tab and go to the website https://learn.k20center.ou.edu/. Once you are the home page, select the "strategies" tab. Inform participants that there are hundreds of strategies, and this continues to grow as new ones are published. Using the filters on the page teachers can narrow down the strategies based on what they looking to accomplish. Select a few filters to show participants examples. Each strategy has a card with a brief description and instruction on how to implement it.
Once you have demonstrated how to find strategies, you can also take this time to show other features on the site such as published lessons, PD opportunities, and student resource. Following this demonstration, you have reached the end of the session.
Instructional strategies are techniques teachers use to help students become independent, strategic learners. When used effectively, instructional strategies can motivate students, help them focus attention, and be used across all grade levels and subject areas (Alberta Learning, 2000). Instructional strategies also facilitate student-centered learning where students are able to actively take ownership in the learning process. A student-centered environment, allows students to reflect on their learning and evaluate their own and other's solutions or ideas (Newmann et al., 2007). According to some scholars, teachers play the critical role in successful implementation of authentic classroom practices (Boaler, 2016; Darling-Hammond, 2000; Denis & O'Hair, 2010; Sanders & Rivers, 1996). Ultimately, when teachers implement instructional strategies, they can create a positive student-centered classroom.
Alberta Learning. Instructional Strategies (2002). https://education.alberta.ca/media/482311/is.pdf Alberta Learning. Teaching Students Who Are Gifted and Talented. Edmonton, AB: Alberta Learning, 2000.
Boaler, J. (2016). Mathematical mindsets: Unleashing students' potential through creative mathematics, inspiring messages and innovative teaching. John Wiley & Sons.
Darling-Hammond, L. (2000). Teacher quality and student achievement. Education Policy Analysis Archives, 8(1), 1-49.
Dennis, J. & O'Hair, M. J. (2010). Overcoming obstacles in using authentic instruction: A comparative case study of high school math & science teachers. American Secondary Education, 38(2), 4-22.
K20 Center. (n.d.). Elbow Partners. Strategies. https://learn.k20center.ou.edu/strategy/116
K20 Center. (2021). Fishbone. Strategies. https://learn.k20center.ou.edu/strategy/1664
K20 Center. (2020). Magnetic Statements. Strategies. https://learn.k20center.ou.edu/strategy/166
K20 Center. (2020) Pass the Problem. Strategies. https://learn.k20center.ou.edu/strategy/151
K20 Center. (2021) What Do You Meme? Strategies. https://learn.k20center.ou.edu/strategy/984
K20 Center (2020). Why-Lighting. Strategies. https://learn.k20center.ou.edu/strategy/128
Newmann, F., King, M., & Carmichael, D. (2007). Authentic assessment and instruction: Common standards for rigor and relevance in teaching academic subjects. Des Moines: Iowa Department of Education.
Sanders, W. L., & Rivers, J. C. (1996). Cumulative and residual effects of teachers on future student academic achievement. Knoxville, TN: University of Tennessee Value-Added Research and Assessment Center.