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Active Engagement Strategies for Whole Group Instruction


Active Engagement Strategies for Whole Group Instruction Sarah Sayko, M. Ed. National Center for Reading First Technical Assistance RMC Research Corp. – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Active Engagement Strategies for Whole Group Instruction

Active Engagement Strategies for Whole Group
  • Sarah Sayko, M. Ed.
  • National Center for Reading First Technical
  • RMC Research Corp.
  • Sheryl Turner, M.A.
  • Eastern Regional Reading First Technical
    Assistance Center

  • Tell me,
  • I forget.
  • Show me,
  • I remember.
  • Involve me,
  • I understand.
  • -Ancient Chinese Proverb

Active Engagement
What is Active Engagement?
  • Active engagement refers to the joint
    functioning of motivation, conceptual knowledge,
    cognitive strategies, and social interactions in
    literacy activities.
  • (Guthrie Anderson, 1999)
  • Active learning involves providing opportunities
    for students to meaningfully talk and listen,
    write, read, and reflect on the content, ideas,
    issues and concerns of an academic subject.
  • (Meyers Jones, 1993)

Active Engagement and Motivation
Factors affecting the development of intrinsic
motivation in a school setting
  • Level of challenge offered by tasks and materials
  • Quality and timing of feedback to students about
    heir work
  • Supports and scaffolds available to learners
  • Students interest in tasks and content
  • Nature of the learning context

Intrinsically motivated students tend to persist
longer, work harder, actively apply strategies,
and retain key information more consistently.
Active Engagement and Conceptual Knowledge
  • Engaged readers gain knowledge and experience as
    they read by continually activating and extending
    their understanding. They apply knowledge to
    answer a new question or to solve a problem.
  • Two methods of activating students knowledge
    building are
  • -Self-explanation -Concept mapping

Active Engagement and Cognitive Strategies
  • Engaged readers use cognitive strategies for
    integrating information, and communicating and
    representing their understanding.
  • Cognitive strategies are procedures that can
    help students succeed at higher-order tasks.
    Some strategies are
  • -Activating prior knowledge before, during, and
    after reading
  • -Self-questioning
  • -Monitoring comprehension
  • -Summarizing

Active Engagement and Social Interaction
  • When children are highly social, sharing their
    reading and writing frequently, they are likely
    to be active, interested readers.

Multiple Student-Teacher Interactions
  • The most direct way to increase learning rate is
    by increasing the number of positive, or
    successful, instructional interactions (PII) per
    school day.
  • It is important that students who need extra
    instruction to gain skill mastery get that
    instruction in a timely manner.
  • After initial instruction, teachers need to
    determine who will benefit from re - teaching or
    pre - teaching in small group and/or one on -

Model of Instructional Contexts for Reading
Learning and Knowledge Goals
Social Interaction
Formative Assessment
Teacher Involvement
Active Engagement
Cognitive Strategies
Conceptual Knowledge
Collaboration Support
Direct Instruction
Impact of Active Engagement
High levels of active engagement during lessons
are associated with higher levels of achievement
and student motivation. Ryan and Deci, 2000

Research studies have repeated shown that reading
in many classrooms is not designed to provide
students with sufficient engaged reading
opportunities to promote reading growth.
Simmons, Fuchs, Fuchs, Mathes Hodge, 1995
Study Results on Active Engagement
  • In a study examining the achievement of 792
    students in 88 classrooms (grades 1-5) in nine
    high-poverty schools the researchers found
  • A significant, positive correlation between
    active learning environments and growth in
    reading comprehension, whereas the correlation
    was negative in passive learning environments.
  • (Taylor, Pearson, Peterson, Rodriguez, 2003)
  • In a study examining the link between teacher
    support and student engagement and achievement in
    the elementary grades, researchers found
  • Students with supportive teachers were 89 more
    likely to be engaged in school than those with
    average levels of support, and 44 are more
    likely to have high levels of achievement and
    commitment than the average student.
  • (Klem Connell, 2004)

Processing StrategyLook-Lean-Whisper
  • Look Make eye contact with your partner so you
    know you have his/her attention.
  • Lean Move heads close together so you can be
  • Whisper Speak in a soft tone so others can be

Look-Lean-Whisper Activity
  • What is active engagement?
  • What are the outward signs of an engaged learner?

Avoid Recitation
Who can tell me?
Processing Strategy 102 Theory
  • To reduce information loss, pause for two
    minutes at about ten minute intervals.
  • For every ten minutes or so of meaningful chunks
    of new information, students should be provided
    with two or so minutes to process the
  • Students can respond and discuss their current
    understanding in various ways.

102 Reflection Activity
  • Record on your 102 reflection sheet the key
    ideas you want to remember about active

Teacher Effectiveness Studies
Characteristics of Effective Classrooms
  • High levels of
  • student cooperation
  • Task involvement
  • Success

Characteristics of Effective Teachers
  • Awareness of purpose
  • Task orientation
  • High expectations for students
  • Enthusiastic, clear, and direct
  • Lessons consistently well prepared
  • Students on task
  • Strong classroom management skills
  • Predictable routines
  • Systematic curriculum-based assessment to monitor
    student progress

102 Reflection Activity
  • Record on your 102 reflection sheet the key
    ideas you want to remember about the
    effectiveness studies.

Classroom Management
  • In order for active student engagement to occur,
    teachers need to develop effective classroom
    management routines.

Active Engagement and Classroom Management Studies
Successful managers integrate their classroom
rules and procedures into their instruction
systematically so that they become part of the
curriculum and classroom environment.
  • Management Styles
  • Rules and Procedures
  • Coping with Constraints
  • Room Arrangement
  • Interruptions

Classroom Management
  • Direct teaching of management routines
  • Pre-Planning of Routines
  • Teaching Routines

Direct Teaching
  • Pre-planning of management routines
  • Room arrangement
  • student seating
  • placement of materials
  • Whole and small group areas
  • Establishing rules and procedures
  • (ask 3 before me, etc.)
  • Clear expectations
  • Quick transitions (timer, music, chime,
  • Reduce teacher talk (hand signal, cue)

Direct Teaching
  • Teaching Routines Systematically
  • Modeling
  • Practice
  • Review
  • Reinforce

Think-Pair-Share Activity
  • 1. Take a moment and list the procedures you have
    used in your classroom.
  • 2. Decide if they are Management or Instructional
  • 3. Discuss with your neighbor how you taught
    these routines to your students.

102 Reflection Activity
  • Record on your 102 reflection sheet the key
    ideas you want to remember about classroom

Instructional Planning
  • In order for active student engagement to occur,
    teachers need to plan instruction effectively.

Deep Knowledge of Curriculum
  • Five components of reading
  • Instructional content
  • Instructional design
  • Strategies
  • Routines
  • Sequence of Instruction
  • Assessments

Knowledge of Student Assessment Results
  • Assessments provide information for
  • Initial placement or student screening
  • Progress monitoring throughout the year for whole
    group and small group instruction
  • Determining individual student needs
  • Formal assessment

Consistent Instructional Routines
  • Reliable and steady.
  • A customary or regular course of procedure.
  • Consistent routines allow students to become
    comfortable with the way instruction is taught so
    that they can concentrate on what is being

Focus on Instructional Objectives
  • What should students
  • know and be able to
  • Do (objective)?

3. How will I, and they, know when they are
2. How does this lesson objective fit into the
big picture of instruction this
year? (Introduction of skill, review of
skill, introduction of skill at more complex
4. What learning experiences will facilitate
their success?
6. Based on data, how do I refine the
learning experiences?
5. What resources will I Use?
Task Analysis
Given a task to be accomplished, how do we get
there? What kinds of lessons and practices are
needed if key performances are to be mastered?
  • Is the task valid and worthwhile?
  • What are the skills, knowledge, and understanding
    that students need to have in order to be
    successful at moving toward mastery of the
    standard and completion of the task?
  • Which students have mastered which parts of which
  • Design differentiated instruction which address
    the various levels of student understanding.

Anticipating Instructional Difficulties for
Struggling Readers
  • Prevention vs. Intervention
  • Who may have difficulty with this objective?
  • How will I monitor learning?
  • What steps will I take to insure all students
    learn this objective?

Examples of Anticipating Instructional
  • A teacher anticipated the inappropriate questions
    that students might generate. The students read
    a paragraph followed by three questions on might
    ask about the paragraph. The students were asked
    to look at each example and decide whether or not
    that question was about the most important
    information in the paragraph. The students
    discussed whether each question was too narrow,
    too broad, or appropriate.
  • (Palincsar, 1987)
  • Students were taught specific rules to
    discriminate a question from a non-question, and
    a good question for a poor one. The teacher
    provided the following statements
  • -A good question starts with a question word.
  • -A good question can be answered by the story.
  • -A good question asks about an important detail
    of the story.
  • (Cohen, 1983)

Group Alertness
  • Definition
  • Is what a teacher does to grab the attention of
    all the students in a group and keep it
    continuously focused on the learning activity.
  • Kounin

Examples of Group Alertness
  • Instead of telling students information, the
    teacher involves her students at every turn. As
    the students listen to the sounds in fan, they
    slid their hand from their shoulder to their
    elbow, then to their wrist and chorally chimed,
    /fff-aaa-nnn/. For rhymes, the students came up
    with the words themselves.
  • During making words activities, the students
    manipulated their own set of letters as the
    teacher coached, Lets do tub. Listen to the
    middle sounds. Its not tab, its not tob. Its
    /ttt-uuu-bbb/. You need a letter for /u/.
  • When the class couldnt answer a question about
    how a character had changed, the teacher
    suggested that they search the book for a clue
    instead of telling them the answer.

Work Smarter, Not Harder
  • Do not commit
  • assumicide!
  • (A. Archer)
  • A. Archer

102 Reflection Activity
  • Record on your 102 reflection sheet the key
    ideas you want to remember about instructional

  • Instructional Delivery

  • In order for active student engagement to occur,
    teachers need to delivery instruction effectively.

Active Engagement and Direct Instruction
Explicit and systematic teaching does not
preclude the use of active engagement strategies.
In fact, one of the most prominent features of
well delivered direct instruction is high
levels of active engagement on the part of all
Primary Components of Interactive Direct
  • Teacher - directed learning.
  • Teacher serves as the instructional leader for
    students, actively selecting and directing or
    leading the learning activities.
  • High levels of teacher-student interaction.
  • Students spend their time interacting with the
    teacher either individually or as part of a group
    as opposed to spending most of their time in
    independent study or seatwork.

Interactive Direct Instruction Pattern of
  1. Teacher checks previous days assignment.
  2. Teacher selects instructional goals and
    materials, and structures the learning activities
    for high levels of student engagement.
  3. Teacher actively teaches the process or concept
    through demonstrations and interactive
    discussions with students.
  4. Teacher assesses student progress through
    follow-up questions and/or practice exercises in
    which students have the opportunity to
    demonstrate their acquisition of knowledge or
  5. Teacher provides immediate corrective feedback to
    student responses.
  6. Provide independent student practice of skill.
  7. Provide weekly and monthly reviews.

Zone of Proximal Development
  • Definitions
  • The distance between the actual developmental
    level as determined by independent problem
    solving and the level of potential development as
    determined through problem solving under adult
    guidance or collaboration with more capable
  • Vygotsky
  • The area within which the student cannot proceed
    alone, but can proceed to learn when guided by a
    teacher or an expert peer who has demonstrated
    mastery of the skill.
  • Rosenshine Meister

Zone of Proximal DevelopmentTeachers Role
  • The teachers role is to assist the students in
    moving through the zone to become expert users of
    their new knowledge and skills.

  • Definition
  • Temporary devices
    and procedures used
    by teachers to support
    students as they learn

Scaffolding LearningGradual Release of
Responsibility Model
  • 1. 2. 3. 4.
  • This graphic is based on work by Pearson and
    Gallagher (1983). In a later study, Fielding and
    Pearson (1994) identified four components of
    instruction that follow the path of the gradual
    release of responsibility model
  • Teacher Modeling
  • Guided Practice
  • Independent Practice
  • Application.

Teacher Responsibility
Student Responsibility
Tips for Effective Scaffolding
  • Anticipate student errors
  • Conduct teacher guided practice
  • Provide feedback
  • Recognize when it is appropriate to fade

Types of Scaffolding
  • Prompts specific devices that can be employed
    for learning an overall cognitive
    strategy-something that students can refer to for
    assistance while working on the larger task.
    (graphic organizers, cue cards, checklists)
  • Think Alouds teachers direct modeling of the
    strategy, including self-talk, that enables
    students to begin experiencing the strategy as a
    authentic set of behaviors/actions that can be
    learned to used to their advantage.

Processing Strategy Tell-Help-Check
  • Tell Partner 1 turns to partner 2 and recall
    information without using notes.
  • Help Partner 2 listens carefully and asks
    questions and gives hints about missing or
    incorrect information.
  • Check Both partners consult notes to confirm

Tell-Help-Check Activity
  • Name the pattern of teaching for interactive
    direct instruction.

Wait Time
  • Slowing down the questioning pace can actually
    speed up the pace of learning.
  • Pause for 3-5 seconds before calling on students
    to answer questions and before responding to
    their answers.
  • Wait time during questioning results in
  • Students asking more questions
  • An increase in student to student interaction
  • An increase in length and number of student
  • Contributions from struggling readers
  • A decreased need for management because all
    students are engaged
  • The teacher asking more higher level questions
    and follow-up questions

Corrective Feedback Activity

Share a time with your partner when you received
feedback. What was the feedback?
Corrective Feedback is Crucial
  • One of the chief benefits of active engagement
    is that it allows us to give corrective feedback.
  • Characteristics of effective feedback
  • Highly specific
  • Descriptive
  • Timely
  • Ongoing
  • Feedback is not praise, blame, approval, or
    disapproval. That is what evaluation is placing
    value. Feedback is value neutral. It describes
    what you did and did not do in terms of your
    goal. (intent vs. effect)

The Feedback Link
  • Correction cant happen without feedback
  • Feedback cant happen without monitoring
  • Monitoring cant happen without student responses
    through active engagement

Conceptual Framework for Corrective Feedback
Explicit Instruction -Skill taught in a direct
manner -I do, we do, you do procedure -Correctiv
e feedback
I do, we do, you do Procedure -Teacher models
skill -Teacher responds with student -Student
responds on own
Student Demonstrates Understanding
Student Does Not Demonstrate Understanding
Application -Firm up understanding by repeating
the series of items preceding item and then item
to provide repeated practice -Delayed check
teacher checks group/student understanding on
item at later time in lesson
Corrective Feedback -Directed toward group of
students -Repeat I do, we do, you do
procedure -Firm up understanding by repeating the
series of items preceding error and then error
item to provide repeated practice -Delayed
check teacher checks group/student
understanding on error item at later time in
Student Error on Delayed Check
-Teacher corrects error again -Firm up
understanding by repeating the series of items
preceding error and then error item to provide
repeated practice -Teacher keeps track of
student errors for reteaching and practice the
next day -Several delayed checks may be given
during a lesson for repeated practice
Time on Task
  • Allocated Time
  • Engaged Time
  • Academic Learning Time
  • Interruptions

Perky Pace
  • Instructional time variance
  • Transitions
  • Momentum

Some Interesting Facts
  • Students are not attentive to what is being said
    in a lecture 40 of the time.
  • Students retain 70 of the information in the
    first ten minutes of a lecture but only 20 in
    the last ten minutes.

  • Meyer Jones,

102 Reflection Activity
  • Record on your 102 reflection sheet the key
    ideas you want to remember on instructional

Active Engagement Strategies
Examples of Active Engagement
  • Instead of telling students information, the
    teacher involves her students at every turn. As
    the students listen to the sounds in fan, they
    slid their hand from their shoulder to their
    elbow, then to their wrist and chorally chimed,
    /fff-aaa-nnn/. For rhymes, the students came up
    with the words themselves.
  • During making words activities, the students
    manipulated their own set of letters as the
    teacher coached, Lets do tub. Listen to the
    middle sounds. Its not tab, its not tob. Its
    /ttt-uuu-bbb/. You need a letter for /u/.
  • When the class couldnt answer a question about
    how a character had changed, the teacher
    suggested that they search the book for a clue
    instead of telling them the answer.

Types of Student Responses
  • Oral Group responses (choral)
  • -students are looking at teacher
  • -students are looking at their own text/paper
  • Oral Partner responses
  • -management look-lean-whisper
  • -review content tell-help-check
  • -brainstorm think-pair-share
  • Oral Individual responses
  • -Have students share answers with partners, then
    call on a student.
  • -Ask a question, give silence signal, provide
    think time, then call on a student.

Types of Responses cont
  • Individual responses (written)
  • -keep short
  • -turn paper/put pencil down to indicate
  • -graphic organizers
  • Physical responses
  • -act out
  • -hand signals/body movements
  • -response cards

Response StrategySignal Cards
  • A good place to start is with red, green, and
    yellow cards which have universal meaning.
  • Students can signal
  • Stop, Im lost! or Slow down, Im getting
    confused or Full steam ahead!
  • One syllable, two syllables, three syllables
  • Short vowel sound, long vowel sound
  • Students signal their responses to questions,
    If you think it is a ___, signal 1. If you
  • Variation Thumbs up, thumbs down

Processing Strategy Clock Buddies
  • Students are given a graphic with slots for ten
    to twelve appointments.
  • At each slot, two students record each others
  • Whenever the teacher announces a time for
    students to process learning, a partnership is
    identified and students meet with their partner.
  • This sign in period takes about 4-5 min. and
    provides an efficient way for students to
    interact over weeks.

Phonemic Awareness Cognitive Strategy Bead
  • Purpose
  • To assist students in blending and segmenting
  • Process
  • Make individual bead strings with six beads on a
    long cord.
  • String the beads on the cord and tie a knot at
    the end.
  • Call out a word card from a deck of word cards.
  • Have students use their bead counters to count
    the number of phonemes in the word.
  • Variation Stack unifix cubes, use bingo chips
    with Elkonin Boxes,
  • Finger/body tapping, etc.

Phonics Cognitive Strategy Word Pockets
  • Purpose
  • To assist students in word building.
  • Process
  • Distribute word pockets and letter cards to
  • Use large pocket chart to model word building
  • Students build words using their letter cards and
    individual word
  • pockets.

Letter cards
m, s, e, d, t

Fluency Cognitive Strategy Choral Reading
  • Purpose
  • To build reading fluency and maximize the amount
    of reading done per student.
  • Process
  • The entire class reads one text completely and in

Alternatives to Choral Reading
  • Refrain
  • One student reads most of the text, and the whole
    group chimes in to read key segments chorally.
  • Line-a-Child
  • Each student reads individually one or two lines
    of a text, usually from a rhyme or poem, and the
    whole group reads the final line or lines
  • Antiphonal Reading
  • Divide the class into groups and assign a section
    of a text to each group. Then have one of the
    groups read its section while the rest of the
    class read other sections, usually in chorus or
  • Call and Response
  • One student reads a line or two of a text and the
    rest of the class responds by repeating the lines
    or reading the next few lines or the refrain.

Vocabulary Cognitive Strategy List-Group-Label
  • Purpose
  • To active prior knowledge, stimulate thinking,
    and set a purpose for learning.
  • Process
  • The students start with an array of words and
    work to group them and then label the categories.
  • Students discuss and compare their categories
    before reading and then confirm or revise their
    thoughts after reading.
  • Students share out their categories to the larger
  • The teacher may prepare the list of words for
    students to work with or give students the topic,
    have them brainstorm words that they associate
    with the topic, and work with that list.

Comprehension Cognitive StrategyAnticipation
  • Teacher prepares several declarative statements
    about a topic.
  • Before reading, students discuss the statements,
    agreeing or disagreeing with them and supporting
    their views with reasons.
  • The teacher remains a neutral facilitator
    encouraging debate and asking probing questions
    that require students to think carefully about
    their views.
  • After reading, students discuss the statements
    again, revising their responses in light of what
    they learned.

Sample Anticipation Guide

Statement Agree/ Disagree Were you correct? Yes/No Page Number Evidence

Review Strategy I Have the Question, Who Has the
  • Materials
  • Two sets of index cards, one set contains
    questions related to the learned skill, the
    second set contains the answers.
  • Hint To keep students engaged, prepare more
    answer cards than question cards.
  • Process
  • Distribute answer cards to students.
  • Read one question card and say, The question is
    ___ Who has the answer?
  • All students check their answer cards to see if
    they have the correct answer or a possible one.
    If a student thinks he/she has an answer, she
    stands and reads the answer.

Active Engagement Teaching Strategies
  • Reciprocal Teaching (Palincsar Brown, 1989)
  • Peer-Assisted Learning Strategies (PALS) (Fuchs
    et al., 1997)
  • Classwide Peer Tutoring (CWPT) (Greenwood, Del
    quadri, Hall, 1989)
  • Questioning the Author (QtA) (Beck et al., 1996)
  • Skim, Question, Read, Recite, Review (SQ3R)

102 Reflection Activity
  • Record on your 102 reflection sheet the key
    ideas you want to remember on active engagement

In Summary
  • Studies on effective teachers have clearly
    established that interactive direct instruction
    is more effective in producing student
    achievement gains. Students learn best when the
    teacher is actively teaching and interacting with
  • (AFT, 2001)
  • Teacher knowledge and skill can make the
    difference between a student who is successful in
    school and one who is not.
  • (Ferguson, 1991)
  • What teachers know and can do makes the crucial
    difference in what children learn. Teaching is
    the most important element of successful
  • (Darling-Hammond, L.)

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