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Doug Lemov's field notes

Reflections on teaching, literacy, coaching, and practice.

02.04.16 On Control the Game and the Culture of Reading

We’re in Albany today with 150 or so educators from around the country talking reading. We spent a bit of time this morning talking about a video that I love—it’s of Maggie Johnson doing Control the Game reading of a key excerpt from To Kill a Mockingbird with her 8th graders. This is one of my favorite…


11.15.15 Preventing the “Gist” Discussion: A Daily Template for Close Reading

Recently I observed a very good high school reading teacher leading a lesson that did a lot of things well. But the lesson also struggled with some very common challenges, especially around the idea of Close Reading (a topic we discuss extensively in our forthcoming book Reading Reconsidered) and it got some of us at TLaC…


03.11.15 Watch the Videos from Ian Leslie’s Guardian Story (Video)

I spent some time with journalist Ian Leslie last fall when I was in London–we spoke a couple of times and he came to a couple of workshops.  This morning he published a reflection on Teach Like a Champion and the ideas behind it in the Guardian. I was very happy to see the work my…


01.11.15 Maggie Johnson: How Derek Pollak Excavates Error (Video)

With Teach Like a Champion 2.0 lining the shelves of a book store near you, we’re back at the tiller at TLaC Towers, studying and learning from teachers.  Recently we watched a lesson of Derek Pollak’s at North Star High School and were pretty inspired.  We liked this clip in particular and Maggie Johnson volunteered to…


11.19.14 The Secret History of the Outsiders Movie

Lord knows I feel some misgivings about my favorite books–my favorite teaching books–being made into movies.  I wrote about my Giver angst here for example.  But superstar English teacher Maggie Johnson sent me this note about the making of The Outsiders and the role one plucky librarian played that’s almost worthy of a movie itself.  The…