Teaching Strategy #1
Teaching strategies are a useful way to not only teach various concepts but also manage the classroom. In a lot of the teacher education courses at BYU, we discuss and apply many different teaching strategies, but have never collected the strategies to be referenced as a future teacher. Recently, I started writing my own reference book of teaching strategies. Because they are very valuable strategies that teachers can easily implement in their classroom, I thought I would share some of my personal favorites for my next few blogs. The first teaching strategy I will discuss is called, “Four Corners.”
Choose four concepts that are related to the lesson and assign one of the concepts to each corner of the room. Ask the students to choose the idea they wish to learn more about and move to that corner. Plan activities for the students to do that help them gain knowledge on their topic. Then ask each group of students to share their projects or findings with the class.
- Students stay on track because they are accountable to teach the class the concept they learned about in their corner.
- Small groups create a safe environment for students to add to the discussion/project (especially good for English Language Learners)
- Group work.
- Activities/projects can be kinesthetic.
- Students engage in critical thinking.
Example in Science
Put one concept in each corner of the room:
- igneous rocks
- metamorphic rocks
- sedimentary rocks
The students pick which concept they would like to study. They go to that corner of the room, where resources, instructions, and activities are provided to help guide their learning. Some resources may include magnifying lenses and rocks. When they have finished their presentation/project, each corner presents their concept to the class. An example of an activity would be to use the magnifying lense to examine the type of rock or mineral they are learning about and describing the characteristics.
- The teacher can gauge students’ understanding of the concept at the beginning and throughout the unit.
- There is an assignment at each corner for the students to present to the class.