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Doug Lemov's field notes

Reflections on teaching, literacy, coaching, and practice.

04.18.18 Samara Levy: Cold Call + No Opt Out + Retrieval Practice

Strengthening long-term memory with Retrieval Practice. Super busy at TLAC Towers this week so I barely have time to write, but we just cut this great clip of TLAC Fellow Samara Levy of Livingston Collegiate Academy High School in New Orleans that I kind of had to share. It shows Samara in the midst of her…


03.09.18 Retrieval Practice is the Perfect Tool to ‘Win Back the Margins’

At a recent video review session, TLAC analyst John Costello edited a video of older clips that we suddenly saw in a new way.  He wrote this reflection about what we noticed and why it was  important (and useful): Recently, the TLAC team spent time screening videos that featured great teachers “winning back the margins.” That…


02.06.18 A Masterful No Opt Out by Denarius Frazier (Video)

Every once in a while, you come across an example of a teacher using a technique in the classroom that captures almost everything you wanted to say about it–Why a teacher would use it. How. It’s a case study in how to apply a tool to advance learning and it pushes your understanding of the idea…


11.17.17 Watching a Favorite Old Clip and Seeing Something New

This beautiful clip of Achievement First’s Summer Payne Cold Calling her kindergarten students is a throw back. I think we shot it in 2010.  For a couple of years it was a staple of our workshops. Somehow we haven’t used it in a while.  But it’s still so wonderful. And quite influential- I still go to…


10.06.17 Using the Do Now for Retrieval Practice–An Update from Alex Laney

  A year or so ago I wrote a post about Alex Laney’s Do Nows at Smith’s Wood Academy in Birmingham, England.  Since then Alex has kept in touch and he recently shared some insights about the school’s new approach to Do Nows or (as they call them) DNAs. Most notably, given the very compelling research…