The Taxonomy of Effective Teaching Practices, described in the book Teach Like A Champion 2.0, is a collection of instructional techniques gleaned from years of observations of outstanding teachers in some of the highest-performing urban classrooms in the country. This new version of the book represents a major revision of the original, updating and adding new techniques—particularly to strengthen alignment with the new, more rigorous Common Core world—and helping teachers better prioritize and use the information.
Look for these updates in TLAC 2.0:
- Check For Understanding, which was a single technique in the first book, gets two dedicated chapters in the new version—not coincidentally, the first two chapters. The great basketball coach John Wooden, who was also an English Teacher, noted that the mark of great teaching is knowing the difference between “I taught it” and “They learned it.” The core of any great teacher’s work is her/his ability to make that distinction and then act on it. That’s no small task so the new book starts with a deep analysis of how that happens.
- Ratio, the technique by which great teachers cause students to do the great majority of the cognitive work in the classroom, is also elevated in importance, becoming three chapters in the new version: one each on writing, discussion, and questioning. The chapter on building Ratio through writing might be the single chapter I’m most excited about. You learn to think by learning to write and in the past four years my team and I have learned so much from teachers about writing well in the classroom. To me, it’s a game changer.
- Building Behavior and Culture, a practice that was also covered in the first edition, has been dramatically revised to focus, in particular, on “preventive maintenance”—strategies teachers can execute in the classroom that help prevent student behavior from escalating into situations that require suspensions and other major disciplinary responses.