Category Archives: Teaching Techniques

Below is a list of teaching techniques that may help you with your lessons. See teaching ideas by topic.

What Stuck With You report

By Shauna Hostetler
Shauna Hostetler:
Thank you Cathy Borchardt for the suggestion of using “What Stuck With You” as we return to class after the break.
It was an ideal “get-our-heads-and-hearts-back-to-Seminary” activity.
I asked the students to write down anything they remember/learned from the first half of the Seminary year.
I used a few questions to get their minds going:
Where are the Saints geographically and spiritually?
What is going well?
What have been/are the struggles?
What revelations have been received?
What doctrines have been taught?
What are some recurring themes?
Who have we learned about and what did we learn about them?
What stuck with you, personally?
What have you learned from daily reading?
24(8 hours ago)

Cathy Borchardt: glad to help! ha! (2 hours ago) 1

Sharon Lanier Rogerson: Shauna, did you spend time discussing what they wrote on their post its or did you just have them stick them on the board and present a lesson? I love the note “Food”. There is always one. :) (1 hour ago) 1

Shauna Hostetler: Yes, Sharon Lanier Rogerson we did discuss briefly (some needed explanations :) ) It was such a great transition into a new year after time off. (1 hour ago)

Read More

Read more here:: Group wall post by Shauna Hostetler

LDS Teaching Techniques

Link: 11 Alternatives to “Round Robin” (and “Popcorn”) Reading

By Becky Mike Edwards
Becky Mike Edwards:
Ideas for reading in class. 11 Alternatives to “Round Robbin” and “Popcorn” Reading.
3(1 hour ago)

http://www.edutopia.org/blog/alternatives-to-round-robin-reading-todd-finley?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=post&utm_campaign=blog-alternatives-to-round-robin-reading-link

Read More

Read more here:: Link: 11 Alternatives to “Round Robin” (and “Popcorn”) Reading

Kids Teach Mini Lessons

By Becky Mike Edwards
Becky Mike Edwards:
#Teachingmethod Last night during my prayer a teaching idea came to my mind that had never used before. Today I posted a sign “pick a lesson” along with five topics. I let the kids know that THEY would be teaching five mini lessons today. One at a time, several students picked a topic and then led the discussion on that topic. I let each one have the power point clicker for their turn. They led the class in reading a scripture, a quote, an activity, asking questions, whatever was on their section of the power point. I asked each one to close with a testimony of their topic. I ended up teaching the last topic quickly. It went really well!! I plan on using this format again. Heavenly Father is brilliant. I love it when ideas come straight from heaven. This format would work for lots of lessons, but today I was teaching #DandC64.
21(2 hours ago)

Mark Congdon: That is so crazy. I just decided like 20 mins ago that I am going to do the same thing. I hadn’t seen your post until now though. That is so funny. I guess I better report on how it went… (1 hour ago)

Becky Mike Edwards: Mark Congdon, Really? That is so cool! Please let us know how it goes! Which section are you teaching? (1 hour ago)

Mark Congdon: I am finishing up a few topics from section 58 and then 59 too. I realized I had about 5 separate topics to hit and thought they could go in almost any order. Our Bishop actually did a choose-your-topic lesson for a 5th Sunday lesson a few months ago. It was a hit, so we’ll give it a whirl! (58 minutes ago) 1

Mark Congdon: Ps: I thought I would share that I served in the France Paris mission. The mission changed though while I was there and I became part if the France Bordeaux mission. Fantastic place. (52 minutes ago)

Becky Mike Edwards: Mark, Really? How did you know my son just arrived there? Did you see it plastered all over my Facebook page? Haha! He is my first missionary and I’m hopelessly sentimental. :) When were you there? He just got his first assignment and he’s in Belgium, just south of Brussels. It’s called Charleroise. (40 minutes ago)

Read More

Read more here:: Group wall post by Becky Mike Edwards

LDS Teaching Techniques

Pre-assigned Questions

By Robyn Childers
Robyn Childers:
Tried something today that worked well: My class isn’t shy but they don’t jump out of their seat when I ask a question of them. Today I wrote down the search questions from the manual onto individual 3×4 notecards and handed them out. When the question came up in the lesson…Mary would answer the question. No waiting to call on someone, no deer in the headlights, no hesitation. It was good.
15(1 hour ago)

Susan Kendrick: Follow (43 minutes ago)

Christy Elliott Vogel: Thanks! I will definitely try that. Here is another idea NY coordinator suggested: write the series of questions on the board (search through apply and testify) and ask them to answer one of them in their journals, then share. Those who are more intimidated will pick less personal questions, but at least they will share something. (27 minutes ago) 1

Read More

Read more here:: Group wall post by Robyn Childers

LDS Teaching Techniques

Four Column Scripture Analysis

By Adriene Olsen Murray Adriene Olsen Murray:
I used this idea from our Seminary Coordinator. It works best with a short section or block of scriptures. It was really fun. The kids found things that I had not thought of and explained what it meant to them.
Divide the board into four columns:
1. Zinger — find verses in the block of scripture that are awesome, stand out to you, should be highlighted.
2. Questions — find any questions you might have from that block of scripture. Maybe a word that you don’t understand, or you wonder why that was included….
3. I Know Because — find something in the block of scriptures that you know to be true/have a testimony of. How do you know?
4. SMCR — Scripture Mastery Cross Reference. Find verses in the block of scriptures that relate to or cross reference with one of the 25 D&C Scripture Mastery verses.

Give the kids 5-7 minutes to quietly study the block of scripture. As they find verses that fit into the different columns on the board, have them write the reference or comment on a “post it note” and place it in the proper column. It gets them up and moving around, which is a nice change.
When time is up, go through and talk about what they have found. We had kids that usually don’t say much, share examples and talk….always a bonus!
I will use this again sometime. #effectiveteachingtool
52(2 hours ago)

Stacey Sager Cahill: Following (2 hours ago)

Susan Kendrick: Following (2 hours ago)

Tiffany Whitney: Love Read More

Read more here:: Group wall post by Adriene Olsen Murray

LDS Teaching Techniques

Name 5

By Beth Jervis Perazzo Beth Jervis Perazzo:
#participation Well, I think I’ve finally found a way to get my freshman students to participate instead of just stare at me when I ask a question. I took the idea from a game called “Name 5.” I have dry erase markers and boards for them to write on (which I took out of my game “Likewise” but any white board will do) and I have 2 to 3 on a team.

At various points in the lesson I will ask the questions in the form of something like “Try to name at least 5 ways we can strengthen our testimonies.” They write down some answers and then share with each other what they put down, especially if it’s an answer no one else has on their board. I’ve asked about 4 questions a lesson in this manner.

I have thrown in things not directly related to the lesson. For example, I started today’s lesson with “Name 5 people in early LDS Church history” just to get them started.

The first day I brought little treats and the winning team got to choose first, but everyone got a treat. Yesterday and today I didn’t really keep track of the score and no treats were given.

I don’t know that I’ll do this every day, but I have gotten many more answers from them this week than usual, so I’m counting it a success.

If anyone else has any other methods they use, I’d love to hear them.
67(1 day ago)

Amy Jones Griffeth: oh I like this! thx for sharing (1 day ago)

Becky Mike Edwards: Beth, how many students do you have? That sounds fun! (

Read more here:: Group wall post by Beth Jervis Perazzo

LDS Teaching Techniques

What Stuck With You?

By Susie Waalkes Kershaw Susie Waalkes Kershaw:
This group as been such a blessing and help-thank you so much to all that share ideas, encouragement, and insights. I thought I would share how our class is doing the “what stuck with you” idea. We have our own “sacred grove” and every Friday they add a leaf on what they learned that week.
53(3 hours ago)

Jeanette Brooks: We do the “what stuck with you” idea also. It so neat to look back on what stuck. I don’t have the room or ability to do a great board like this but I think it’s awesome. I share the RS room and have very limited wall space. I just wanted you to know how amazing I think his is. Good job with the inspiration. (2 hours ago) 1

Coleen Machiel Castro: I agree n I’m jealous at those who have space. But I may use this idea on a removable posterboard. (1 hour ago) 1

Linda Denyer Abilez: I LOVE this! I wish I had seen this at the beginning of the year because I totally would have stolen your idea. (1 hour ago) 1

Marjean Jones Livingston: This is impressive. When do you all find the time? Just the lesson can take so much time. I do have room for this. (1 hour ago)

Linette Teerlink: Wow! (1 hour ago)

Marcy Fluckiger: I love this. We have been having the kids who say the closing prayer stand and before saying the prayer, say “today I have learned for myself …Read More

Read more here:: Group wall post by Susie Waalkes Kershaw

LDS Teaching Techniques

Handling Disruptive Students

From the Gospel Teaching and Learning Handbook:

Correct disorderly or inappropriate behavior.

There are some general principles to keep in mind that will help a teacher invite proper order and respect in the classroom. To have order does not always mean having complete silence; nor does it mean that a class cannot be enjoyable and fun. But a disorderly or irreverent student or group of students can have a negative impact on the learning process and hinder the influence of the Holy Ghost.

When a student or a group of students is misbehaving, it can be frustrating for the teacher and other students. At such times, it is especially important for teachers to keep control of their emotions and to seek the influence of the Spirit. How teachers respond to any given incident may be more important than the incident itself and can either increase or decrease the respect and trust of the students. As teachers correct improper behavior, they need to be firm but friendly, fair, and caring and then quickly return to the lesson. To ridicule a student publicly may correct a student’s behavior for a time but will not edify either the teacher or the student. It may also result in other students fearing or distrusting the teacher. Teachers should remember the righteous influence of persuasion, long-suffering, gentleness, meekness, unfeigned love, and kindness (see D&C 121:41–42).

There are some specific steps teachers can take to handle problems as they occur. These are possible approaches to discipline problems that may not work the same way with every student or situation:

  • Make eye contact. Often students talk to each other at inappropriate times because they think the teacher will not notice. The teacher could look at the students and briefly make eye contact so they know the teacher is aware of what is happening.
  • Stop talking. If students are talking when they should be listening, the teacher could stop talking, even in midsentence if necessary. Raising the voice to talk over them will not generally solve the problem.
  • Move closer. Another action teachers can take to correct behavior without having to directly confront a student is to move and stand beside the misbehaving student. The teacher can continue with the lesson, but the student will usually feel the teacher’s presence and stop what he or she is doing.
  • Direct a question. Without calling attention to the inappropriate behavior, a teacher can ask the offending student a question related to the lesson. This is not done to embarrass the student, but to help bring him or her back into the discussion.

There may be times when students do not respond to these less direct efforts and continue to disrupt the class. Following are some additional, more direct steps a teacher can take to maintain order:

  • Consult with the student privately. The Lord said that if someone offends another, the offended person should talk with the offender “between him or her and thee alone” (D&C 42:88). The teacher could counsel with the student about why he or she is misbehaving and let him or her know that the behavior must change or additional steps will be taken. Teachers should make sure they differentiate the students’ behavior from their individual worth. It is important for teachers to remember that “the worth of souls is great in the sight of God” (D&C 18:10). They should communicate to the student that while the poor behavior is unacceptable, he or she is valued. Teachers should remember to follow the Lord’s counsel and show “forth afterwards an increase of love toward him whom thou hast reproved” (D&C 121:43).
  • Separate the students causing the disruption.
  • Consult with parents or priesthood leaders. If unacceptable behavior persists, it is often helpful for the teacher to consult with the student’s parents. Frequently parents can provide additional insights and ideas that will help correct the concern. In some cases, the student’s bishop may be able to help.
  • Dismiss the student from class. President David O. McKay gave the following counsel to teachers: “If [your effort] fails, then you can make an appeal to the parents, and you can say: ‘If his misconduct continues, we shall have to put him off the roll.’ That is the extreme action. Any teacher can dismiss a [student]; you should exhaust all your other sources before you come to that. But order we must have!—it is necessary for soul growth, and if one [student] refuses, or if two [students] refuse to produce that element, then they must leave. Better one [student] starve than an entire class be slowly poisoned” (“Guidance of a Human Soul—The Teacher’s Greatest Responsibility,” Instructor, Sept. 1965, 343).

Before asking a student to leave class for any extended period of time, the teacher should counsel with the parents, seminary and institute supervisors, and appropriate priesthood leaders. In such circumstances it is important that the teacher help the students and the parents understand that the student is choosing to leave seminary by not choosing to behave in an acceptable manner. It is the disruption that is unacceptable, not the student. When he or she chooses otherwise, the student will be welcome to return to class.

LDS Teaching Techniques

Are You Sure You Covered the Topic?

By Scott Knecht It is satisfying at the end of a class to sit back and think how well I covered the material for the students. Teachers love to cover things and to say things like “we covered that really well in class today and the students are all ready for the test.” I think we feel victorious when we can acknowledge that our coverage was great.

But here is the problem with that thought: we really don’t cover much of anything and to continue to think we do leads us to a place where we are not teaching well. We tend to pull back and soften our teaching because we feel so confident in our coverage.

For example, I’ve read the New Testament multiple times and feel comfortable that I understand what it says about the life of Christ. Beyond the New Testament I have in my bookcase many books about the life of Christ. There are well over 3000 pages of material on His life written by men who have studied and know much more than I do. I’ve read those books. Is it safe for me to say that I have now ‘covered’ the life of Christ in my personal study? Not by a long shot. In another year, or two, or five, someone will publish another book about His life and there will be more to know. Indeed, the very last verse of the Gospel of John says that if all that Jesus did was written down, “I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that should be written.”

Why does the idea of coverage cause us to not teach well? Because it leads us as teachers to stop asking questions which results in no thinking, just mechanical teaching. When you believe that you have written a lesson plan that covers the material for the day, then your thinking usually stops. Even if you think the lesson does what it should do, how do you react when a student raises a question that you had never even thought of ? What do you do when a student gives a wonderful answer to one of your questions but it is an answer that you never considered? Suddenly, there is more to cover.

I read an essay once about the proper way to travel. The author said that most people are satisfied to quickly see the thing they came to see and then leave, grateful that they can now say “I’ve seen the Grand Canyon” or whatever it was. His suggestion was that unless you spend some time with something and look at it from multiple angles you’ve never really seen it.

We went to Mt. Rushmore with some friends a few years back. We arrived in the area very late in the afternoon and by the time we got to the monument it was almost dark. We saw what we could see with the remaining light and then watched as the faces on the mountain were artificially illuminated. It was very impressive but we all decided to come back the next day and see it in the sunlight, which we did. It looked quite different and I was grateful that we saw it in another way. We were able to hike around the area and experience more and come to understand it better with more time.

We could have been satisfied with the night time visit and could have honestly said that we had seen it. But to see more of it differently gave me another experience, for which I was grateful.

So it is in the classroom. You can teach a lesson and feel like you’ve adequately covered things, or you can understand that coverage is an illusion.

So if you can’t honestly cover things what then can you do? You can ‘expose’ your students to new ideas and thoughts. You can ‘address’ the ideas found in the material for the day. To address means “to direct to the attention of” or “to deal with or discuss”. That’s what I want my students to do, to learn to deal with things, to think and to act and to make responsible and valid judgments about issues. They will never learn to do that if I’m busy covering things for them.

Rather than having you the teacher try to cover things, how about this thought: don’t try to cover things; rather, seek to have your students ‘uncover’ some of the material each day, so that they can learn for themselves.

Source::

Link: Teach To Learn: The 5 Minute Lecture

By Suzi Alkonis

Suzi Alkonis

:

http://teachtolearn1.blogspot.com/2014/10/the-5-minute-lecture.html?spref=fb

Not everything in a class should be or needs to be student discovery.  Sometimes I just need to tell them something but I struggled for a long time to do it effectively and in a timely manner.  Then I discovered the beauty of something I came to call The 5 Minute Lecture.  I just stumbled onto it one day in lesson preparation.  Here is how it works:

 

1.    The lecture goes no more than 5 minutes. I appoint a student to be the time keeper and commission her to stop me at 5 minutes and not a second longer (I have never gone over).

2.    I speak in a regular pace – it is not rushed to squeeze things into 5 minutes.  And during the lecture I am the only one that can speak.

3.    I will have outlined some part of the text to lecture on – a chapter or so that the class needs to be exposed to – and that is the basis of the lecture.

4.    The students have to have the text open so that they can follow along and mark things.  Obviously they need a pen and paper handy.

5.    I tell them that during the lecture I will highlight the information they need to be aware of and pose some questions for them to chew on – they need to mark the text and take notes as necessary.

6.    Their last assignment is to come up with one question related to the lecture and text so that after the lecture is over (no more than 5 minutes) they can start asking questions.  Sometimes they will not have a question but just a comment or thought.  That too is acceptable.

 

When I give the timekeeper the nod she and I start together.  I will have practiced it once or twice beforehand so I know I will keep within the time and still say all I need to say.  The lecture becomes the basis for that class period and perhaps one or two more.  If done right it exposes the class to information and serves as a tease to get them to wonder more. And the students generally enjoy it because it is short and effective.

 

I only use the technique 3-4 times per semester because I don’t want it to become stale but when used well it is a wonderful tool to get things going.

Source:: LDS Seminary Teacher Group

LDS Teaching Techniques

The 5 Minute Lecture

By Scott Knecht

One night in graduate school I went to the opening session of a new class. It was a bit of a different schedule – 2 nights a week for 4 hours per night for 4 weeks – so I had to get mentally prepared to endure the length each night. Little did I know the adventure that awaited.
The teacher walked in at the appointed hour, called the roll, then said “Let’s begin”. He opened his very thick notebook and started to read….. and read for 4 straight hours, minus the mandatory 15 minute break in the middle. This was a lecture in it’s darkest, most numbing, most monotone form. If I said it was horrible, that would be a very kind upgrade. I don’t think I was the only student in the room hoping for an earthquake, a flood, a fire alarm, or the zombie apocalypse – anything that would stop the torture.
At the end of the evening I wrote the teacher a note which in essence said ‘thank you for your efforts but could we please be able to ask questions and have some interaction’. I handed it to him on the way out with my signature on it. The next meeting (I should have done some deep meditation, yoga, or tai chi in order to prepare mentally and physically for it) he began the session by saying “On Monday night one of you handed me a note asking for time to have questions, so, do you have any questions?” He looked around for about 5 seconds and when no one said anything he said “I didn’t think so” and he opened the notebook and started reading again. And for the next month, that’s what we did each night.
That is a true story and I think it captures the general perception we have about lectures. If a teacher says “We’re going to have a lecture tonight” most of us shrivel up and shut down. We have been trained to think that lecture is a bad form of teaching. But in the right doses and at the right times, it is very useful. Think of it as teacher presentation – a way for the teacher to get some information out, some facts and figures that will provide a necessary and useful baseline in the class period.
Not everything in a class should be or needs to be student discovery. Sometimes I just need to tell them something but I struggled for a long time to do it effectively and in a timely manner. Then I discovered the beauty of something I came to call The 5 Minute Lecture. I just stumbled onto it one day in lesson preparation. Here is how it works:
1. The lecture goes no more than 5 minutes. I appoint a student to be the time keeper and commission her to stop me at 5 minutes and not a second longer (I have never gone over).
2. I speak in a regular pace – it is not rushed to squeeze things into 5 minutes. And during the lecture I am the only one that can speak.
3. I will have outlined some part of the text to lecture on – a chapter or so that the class needs to be exposed to – and that is the basis of the lecture.
4. The students have to have the text open so that they can follow along and mark things. Obviously they need a pen and paper handy.
5. I tell them that during the lecture I will highlight the information they need to be aware of and pose some questions for them to chew on – they need to mark the text and take notes as necessary.
6. Their last assignment is to come up with one question related to the lecture and text so that after the lecture is over (no more than 5 minutes) they can start asking questions. Sometimes they will not have a question but just a comment or thought. That too is acceptable.
When I give the timekeeper the nod she and I start together. I will have practiced it once or twice beforehand so I know I will keep within the time and still say all I need to say. The lecture becomes the basis for that class period and perhaps one or two more. If done right it exposes the class to information and serves as a tease to get them to wonder more. And the students generally enjoy it because it is short and effective.

I only use the technique 3-4 times per semester because I don’t want it to become stale but when used well it is a wonderful tool to get things going.

Source::

Who AM I?

By [email protected] (Pam Mueller)

I have done this activity before to capture the attention of the students, have them involved and basically giving the lesson.

On the board I put a picture of the person we will be studying under the rectangle of paper.
Behind the circles are clues

I pick a student to start us off, that person will choose a circle and read the description. Then choose another student to come up and pick a circle….

Of course after the first one was read, several of them guessed Joseph Smith. We kept choosing and reading until all of them were read. They kept guessing different people, because these were little known facts about his life they were reading.

Source:: Seminary Moments – Pam Mueller