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Doug Lemov's field notes

Reflections on teaching, literacy, coaching, and practice.

05.24.18 Dan Cotton on Building Relationships and Trust: An Index Post

  A little over a year ago, my colleague Dan Cotton wrote a series of posts about relationships in the classroom that were unusually insightful and that I keep coming back to. I often want to forward them to someone or reference them as a group. To do that I have to send three links and…


01.05.17 Final Thoughts on Fist Bumps and Relationships

  If you are a regular visitor to this blog, you probably read my colleague Dan Cotton‘s series of outstanding posts over the course of this past year on the topic of building relationships with students. Dan’s reflections began with a fist bump–or more precisely with a reflection on the guidance we’d heard teachers given to use…


09.13.16 Competence and Trust Part III: Student-Teacher Relationship Building and TLAC

My colleague Dan Cotton has been thinking, and writing about relationships in the classroom.  In previous posts he looked at how a teacher’s instructional competence can directly effect his or her capacity to build trust with students and the manner in which fostering genuine achievement was critical to all enduring teacher-student relationships. In his third and…


06.24.16 Competence and Trust, Part II–A Guest Post From Dan Cotton

This is the second of three posts by my colleague Dan Cotton that’s based on a series of conversations we’ve had about the nature of relationships in the classroom.  The first post appears here.   Dan writes: Consider this brief moment from outstanding high school English teacher Beth Verrilli’s classroom: Her students are reading Macbeth. They’re…


06.21.16 Competence and Trust, Part 1–A Guest Post from Dan Cotton

My colleague Dan Cotton and I have been talking on and off for much of this year about relationships and classrooms- both the importance of relationships but also some of the more surprising aspects.  Dan’s written a series of thoughtful reflections that I’m going to post–and respond to–over the coming days. Here’s his first: Trust is…