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Doug Lemov's field notes

Reflections on teaching, literacy, coaching, and practice.

01.02.18 Practice Gold–Pianist Barron Ryan Reflects on Practice

I’m a huge fan of Barron Ryan–and not just because he plays a classy elegant kind of piano jazz. Though you should check him out playing  Don’t Stop Til You Get Enough if you’ve never heard him. No, I’m a big Barron Ryan fan because he’s one of the most reflective musicians I know on the topic…


06.01.17 Video from our Annual ‘Practice Perfect’ Workshop

Just two weeks to go until our annual Practice Perfect workshop when we spend two days studying what is probably the secret to more effective teacher training- deliberate practice. Teaching is a performance profession–though few people think of it that way.  This means that we perform live. We go on stage five times a day. And…


02.25.15 On Practice…and Reading: A Guest Post from Leanne Riordan

Leanne Riordan teaches English Language Learners at Baltimore City Schools’ Holabird Academy.  I’ve shared several of her insights previously in this blog and in the new 2.0 version of Teach Like a Champion. She sent me a note recently about using the principles of practice–ideas from Practice Perfect and several of our practice-intensive workshops as adapted…


12.10.14 Practice Perfect Podcast with Athlete By Design

Did a really interesting interview about Practice Perfect with Jeremy Boone, who runs Athlete By Design.  He does podcasts on coaching with a variety of folks generally smarter and more glamorous than me.  Now I see why. He was meticulously prepared for the interview and the result was that 1) We ended up talking about a…


04.23.13 Slowly, With Precision, With the Brain

GREAT piece in the April 8 New Yorker by pianist Jeremy Denk… a retrospective on the role of practice in his development. Deeply reflective and insightful. Definitely worth the read though this video gives you a really good sense for a couple of the key sections, especially his first serious teacher’s use of feedback in his practice…