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Doug Lemov's field notes

Reflections on teaching, literacy, coaching, and practice.
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Reading Reconsidered is available now. For more information click here.

04.18.16 Building Autonomy via the ‘Literary Analysis Protocol’

Chapter 8 of Reading Reconsidered describes tools teachers can use to build Intellectual Autonomy… students’ ability to ask and answer their own questions of a text.  One of the tools we describe in the book is the literary analysis protocol, an exercise where a teacher regularly gives students a short passage from a book and asks…


04.13.16 Workshop: Principles of Teaching for (Soccer) Coaches

I’m super excited to announce that I’m going to be running a workshop for soccer coaches in coordination with EDP Soccer on May 20 in East Brunswick, NJ. The workshop will focus on how to plan and run better training sessions.  I’ll be drawing on the work of cognitive scientists like Anders Ericsson, Daniel Willingham and…


04.11.16 The Starfish: Katie Yezzi on Creating Academic Thresholds

My colleague and Practice Perfect co-author Katie Yezzi was the founding principal of Troy Preparatory Charter School here in upstate New York and is now a senior instructional leader at Uncommon Schools. She recently visited a school and observed one of those “might have been” moments–a lesson that was so close and yet so far. She’s been…


04.07.16 Watch Carefully: Prevention Beats Cure

“Students say I’m strict, but I don’t write referrals. How is that?” Peter D. Ford, a teacher I admire, recently tweeted. There’s something deeply important to reflect on in his words. In the classroom, as in medicine, prevention always beats cure. What you want is not so much the ability to fix it when students are…


04.06.16 Using Sensitivity Analysis to build students’ “ear” for writing

Here are the first three paragraphs of Kurt Vonnegut’s classic short story, “Harrison Bergeron”: HARRISON BERGERON THE YEAR WAS 2081, and everybody was finally equal. They weren’t only equal before God and the law. They were equal every which way. Nobody was smarter than anybody else. Nobody was better looking than anybody else. Nobody was stronger…