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Doug Lemov's field notes

Reflections on teaching, literacy, coaching, and practice.

01.17.17 How Dani Quinn Uses Show Me to Check for Understanding

Dani Quinn is a math teacher at the Michaela School in London. We recently video-taped her lesson and, in watching, I was struck right away by her Check for Understanding. She constantly used Show Me (technique #5 in TLaC) to assess students as she taught and she used that data to guide her lesson. And she…


11.24.16 Check for Understanding: Courtney Huber’s ‘Master Clip’ Shows How

This week in our video review meetings we cut a master clip of Courtney Huber, a fourth grade teacher at North Star Academy’s Vailsburg Elementary School in Newark.  We call it a master clip because it is a case study in the use of all the parts of Checking for Understanding woven together.  It starts as…


12.11.15 “He Worked it Out!”: Emilie Tarraf’s Culture of Error (Video)

We’re talking Check for Understanding at our Engaging Academics workshop in Albany this morning- specifically how great teachers normalize growth mindset–struggling forward, errors and all–and make that seem like the most normal thing in the world.  This is critically important because if students try to hide their mistakes from their teachers it is 10x harder to…


11.06.15 A Tiny Little Thought-Post on Growth Mindset for Grownups

Look, we know we want the kids to have a growth mindset and to embrace a “Culture of Error“– in which kids like struggle and challenge and in which getting it wrong is a key tool for getting it right. We know we want the kids to think, “Oh, good. This is going to be hard!”…


10.19.15 HISD’s Erin Krafft Installs Turn and Talk & Builds a Culture of Error (Video)

For our video meeting this week, Chief Video Officer, Rob Richard promised the TLaC team clips that were ‘new’ and ‘pretty exciting.’  Now, Rob is not given to hyperbole.  ‘Pretty exciting’ on the Rob-o-meter is pretty serious praise so the pre-meeting buzz was, let’s just say, intense. With good reason, it turns out. We’d just received…