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Doug Lemov's field notes

Reflections on teaching, literacy, coaching, and practice.

09.21.20 Dan Willingham’s Workarounds for Online Teaching: Some Video Examples

The Cognitive Psychologist Daniel Willingham had a useful Op-Ed in the LA Times last week in which he discussed the ways that online learning is cognitively strange (my phrase; blame me if you don’t like it)–that is, it asks us to interact socially in ways we aren’t used to and haven’t evolved for and that are…


08.24.20 Agency Over Video: The Key to Asynchronous Instruction

Good online instruction will probably always involve a combination of synchronous and asynchronous methods. After all they have different strengths and limitations. Synchronous instruction allows us to connect with students and build relationships. And it lets us understand and support their learning in real time. But asynchronous instruction deals better with technology problems: it resists glitchy…


04.18.20 Video: Retrieval Practice in Asynchronous Instruction

As you can tell from reading this blog, our team has been furiously watching footage of online instruction. We’ve been inspired by the enthusiasm and humility of teachers as they take on sudden new challenges in the name of remote instruction. Last week we watched several teachers doing Retrieval Practice as part of their online lessons. …


04.13.20 More Thoughts–and Another Video–About Online Read Aloud

Last week Beth Verrilli shared a thought-provoking post about the power of Read Alouds in an online setting. Beth noted how the two videos we shared both helped students to understand how to read a given text independently and also connected them to reading and to the classroom community. I found myself thinking about that when…