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Doug Lemov's field notes

Reflections on teaching, literacy, coaching, and practice.

01.11.19 On Coaching: You Give Two Kinds of Feedback. Are They Aligned??

Here’s a slide I showed recently to coaches at a workshop: The slide is an attempt to describe a common challenge I see in the teaching/coaching of athletes. Here’s the scene. Athletes are playing. We are observing them as coaches. We notice something that needs to be improved. So we stop and make a teaching point. …


02.12.18 Coaching Words: You Don’t, You Didn’t, You Must, We Will

The language we use to help people know how to grow and improve is important. When we give feedback, we’re giving technical information but we’re always also building culture between and among us at the same time. I found myself thinking about language when I recently heard some coaching interactions on the youth sports field but…


06.09.17 For Coaches: Notes on ‘Means of Participation’

      A topic I’ve been thinking about as I’ve watched coaches over the past couple of months is something I call ‘means of participation.’ It’s relevant during questioning. I’ve written about if for classroom teachers here.  But it’s relevant for coaches too- questioning is important in building decision-making and reinforcing knowledge through recall practice…


06.09.17 For Coaches: On Correcting Instead of Critiquing

I’ve spent a lot of time watching coaches this year.  One of the common ideas I find myself noticing is the difference between critique and correction.  I took the section on this idea from Practice Perfect and adapted and simplified it slightly. Here it is. Critique involves telling a participant how to do it better. Correction…