26 September, 2017

Student Engagement: Contribute in a Meaningful Way

RSI4Edu.com & #studentengagement.  Making sure your students know how (and when) to contribute in class.

Increasing student engagement during instruction is crucial for increasing interest, unlocking motivation, and impacting student achievement.  In Doug Lemov’s (2015) Teach Like a Champion 2.0 text he reminds us through a discussion on ‘ratio’ that students should do, “...as much of the cognitive work - the writing, the thinking, the analyzing, the talking - as possible.” (p.234).  To accomplish this we have to take the time to teach our student how (and when) to contribute in a meaningful way in our classrooms.

We have all been in a Classroom H, kids calling out, the teacher talking over students, boys in the back row eventually getting yelled at ~ seemingly chaos.  Of course this is not the intent of the teacher of Classroom H, in fact the teacher was excited to teach students about finding evidence in the text to support comprehension of characterization.  One could argue the students were excited as well ~ just a little over excited!

The teacher of Classroom H failed to take the time to teach her students how (and when) to contribute in a meaningful way.  How to engage in learning in a manner that would foster acceleration and generate excitement in the learning process.  At RSI4Edu.com we provide our partners in education professional development and follow up in-class coaching on how to increase student engagement through questioning, writing, and discussion.  If you or your school is interested in more information begin by looking into Teach Like A Champion 2.0 Techniques 33: Cold Call and 34: Call & Response and contact RSI4Edu.com to schedule an informational meeting to discuss how we can support your educational team.


Lemov, D., (2015). Teach like a champion 2.0 : 62 techniques that put students on the path to college. San Francisco :Jossey-Bass,

19 September, 2017

Data-Driven Culture: Student Data

RSI4Edu.com & #studentdata.  Setting goals and measuring progress.

Teacher-student relationships are reported as having an impressive effect-size on student achievement, d=0.72 (Hattie, 2009).  When we demonstrate to our students that we care about their individual learning, they begin to invest in us as teachers and themselves.  We can accomplish this by helping students set goals based on where they are instructionally and where they want to be.  Then through the use of formative assessment we can measure when instruction meets the needs of our students ~ and when it does not.  The feedback loop that is created (from teacher-student & student-teacher) becomes invaluable and data becomes the driving factor in what and how curriculum is planned and delivered.  This process unlocks motivation for both the teacher and the student as progress towards goals is carefully measured and success is celebrated ~ while error is treated as information from which to increase focus.  Suddenly, learning becomes exciting and accelerated.


Bandura (1994) reminds us that it is the acquisition of [academic] skills that builds self-esteem.  For support on building Teacher-student relationships, unlocking motivation, and establishing a data-driven culture visit www.RSI4Edu.com and request an informational meeting at your school.

Bandura, A. (1994). Self-efficacy. In V. S. Ramachaudran (Ed.), Encyclopedia of human behavior (Vol. 4, pp. 71-81). New York: Academic Press. (Reprinted in H. Friedman [Ed.], Encyclopedia of mental health. San Diego: Academic Press, 1998).

Hattie, J. (2009). Visible learning: A synthesis of over 800 meta-analyses relating to achievement. New York, NY: Routledge Taylor & Francis Group.

07 September, 2017

Summer Training Series - Classroom Tone

RSI4Edu.com & #BeginningTeacher train on the importance of classroom tone.

Starting the school year by setting high expectations, establishing rules, and practicing routines is always more fun when teachers are conscious of their classroom tone.  The tone of any classroom should be efficient, respectful, and positive.  When we work with teachers on classroom environment and efficiency we talk about the “economy of language.”  The goal is to avoid diluting important information by reducing unnecessary teacher talk.  A respectful classroom remembers that children aren’t born with a built-in sense of respect - hence, we have a need to model and teach students how to be respectful.  Teach basic social interaction skills, set expectations for students on how and when to argue versus talking back, and assume the best - most behaviors are not intentionally targeted toward making your life worse.  Finally, a positive classroom adheres to TLAC (2015) Technique 58: Positive Framing; “Guide students to do better work while motivating and inspiring them by using a positive tone to deliver constructive feedback.”  Try narrating the positive in the classroom by telling students what they should be doing, rather than fussing about what they shouldn’t be doing.

For more information on establishing a positive classroom environment and classroom tone contact us at RSI4Edu.com.  Professional development inclusive of in-class coaching increases the power of teaching!