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Doug Lemov's field notes

Reflections on teaching, literacy, coaching, and practice.

09.22.17 Art of the Sentence: Brittany Rumph’s Kindergartners Can Really Write!

We love the technique Art of the Sentence.  By asking students to write a single sentence- ideally by asking them to write that sentence about some rich and engaging area of content- we teach them to master the art of syntactic control- the ability to use diverse tools to express complex ideas and this is extremely…


09.19.17 Two Cold Calls from the First Days of First Grade

This morning we watched two great clips of first grade teacher Jennifer Crucetti Cold Calling her first graders on the second day of school at Abram Lansing Elementary in Cohoes, NY. Cold Call, as you may know, is a hugely powerful tool in the classroom when it’s a normal and positive part of the lives of…


09.14.17 Practice on an Island

One of the things that people tell us they value most in our workshops is practice—the chance to rehearse and refine elements of your teaching technique in the safety and camaraderie of colleagues rather than in front of your third period math class. However, not everyone has the opportunity to practice with peers as often as…


09.06.17 Notes from Cognitive Scientist Nathan Wallis’ Presentation on the Brain

Recently I was in New Zealand doing training for coaches at New Zealand Rugby, the organization that supports the growth of the national game from youth to elite levels, including the national team, the All Blacks. The All Blacks—you know this if you are a rugby fan—are the best rugby team in the world.  Drawing from…


09.02.17 Adding a Parameter to Cold Call

  I’m on my way back from New Zealand today. In the course of doing some training down there for NZ Rugby coaches, I met a music teacher from the South Island named Sam Hadfield. He’d been experimenting with a few carefully chosen techniques—Cold Call, No Opt Out, Right is Right—in his classroom with generally positive…