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What are the instructional priorities in a highly successful classroom? Engaging, rigorous instruction aligned to state standards that helps students comprehend, connect, and communicate content deeply.

Movement and Discourse Playlist

Learning is activated when kids are moving and talking. Movement provides the opportunity for learners to become actively engaged and talk to each other in a variety of group sizes. These strategies are best used any time during instruction to activate the social aspect of learning, thus promoting purposeful student discourse, content processing, and comprehension.

Rehearsal and Practice Playlist

Learning requires rehearsal and practice. The more the teacher varies the practice, the more likely kids are to engage in learning. Rehearsal and practice that allow for collaborative processing and dialog also help learners self-correct misconceptions. These strategies are best used during acquisition of vocabulary, visuals, content, and/or text at the beginning of an instructional period. They are also powerful methods for review.

Extended Thinking Playlist

Learning requires thinking. Rigorous instruction involves well-designed learning tasks that allow kids to think about a topic in multiple ways or to think through a topic to arrive at more complete and justifiable answers. These strategies are best used after students have acquired concepts, vocabulary, visuals, and/or texts to provide opportunities for deeper, more thoughtful connections.

Learning from Mistakes Playlist

Learning is assessed in a variety of ways on state assessments. While the questions will never be repeated, the visuals and errors associated with the content will be replicated. Teachers should use items strategically and purposefully to help students discover and correct their mistakes. These strategies are best used with assessment items as bell ringers and/or during review to spiral in concepts that require loopback. They are also effective for helping students discover and correct mistakes with a variety of stimuli.

Evidence of Learning Playlist

Learning is best assessed through multiple measures – tests, products, discourse, and other formative and summative methods. When kids have opportunities to show what they know and what they are still confused about in a variety of ways, they are more willing to commit to additional learning. These strategies are best used at the end of a lesson or unit to provide evidence of learning in addition to tests and homework. They also provide excellent opportunities for interacting with multiple representations that prompt students to think, talk, and write.


The playlist categories were developed based upon the research and/or meta-analysis of Gallagher (2004), Jensen (2008, 2020), Kagan (1994, 2009), Keeley (2008), Marzano, Pickering, & Pollock (2010), Marzano (2017), and Hattie (2008, 2023).