Teaching Strategies

We encourage teachers to use student-centered teaching strategies that nurture students' literacy and critical thinking skills within a respectful classroom climate. The strategies suggested here can be used with students of all ages with any academic content.

You'll find a complete list of teaching strategies on this page.

Teaching Strategies by Title

Teaching Strategy


Gauge student interest in a topic by asking students to describe three takeaways, two questions they have, and one aspect they most enjoyed. 

Teaching Strategy

Alphabet Brainstorm

A quick way to generate thoughts, measure prior knowledge, or check learning, this brainstorming exercise can be used as an individual, small group, or whole class activity. 

Teaching Strategy

Analyzing Visual Images and Stereotyping

Use this teaching strategy to lead students in a critical analysis of an image, and to help students develop and enhance observational, interpretive, and critical thinking skills. 

Teaching Strategy

Annotating and Paraphrasing Sources

Teach your students to carefully read material by having them annotate text. This process involves underlining key words or writing margin notes that address the validity and bias of evidence derived from a particular source. 

Teaching Strategy

Anticipation Guides

Ask students to express an opinion about ideas before they encounter them, and help prepare students to recognize and connect to themes as they surface with this teaching strategy. Use this strategy at the beginning of a unit of study or before engaging a text.

Teaching Strategy

Assigning Roles for Group Work

When working in groups, some students tend to assume too much responsibility for their groups' work, while other students may be reluctant to contribute. Use this teaching strategy to assign roles as an effective way to structure group work, distribute responsibility, and ensure accountability. 

Teaching Strategy

Attribute Linking - Building Community by Taking Perspectives

Before leading a discussion about a difficult issue on which students might disagree, use this teaching strategy to help students look for commonalities among themselves. This exercise emphasizes similarities over differences and builds a climate of openness and trust in the classroom.

Teaching Strategy

Barometer - Taking a Stand on Controversial Issues

Classroom discussions often involve issues that bring up a wide range of opinions. Structure a discussion on one such issue by using this teaching strategy that allows all students to represent their points of view.

Teaching Strategy

Big Paper - Building a Silent Conversation

This discussion strategy uses writing and silence as tools to help students explore a topic in-depth. Having a written conversation with peers slows down students’ thinking process and gives them an opportunity to focus on the views of others. This strategy also creates a visual record of students’ thoughts and questions that can be referred to later in a course.

Teaching Strategy

Biopoem: Connecting Identity and Poetry

Students often struggle with how to answer the question “Who am I?” This teaching strategy focuses on less obvious factors that shape a person’s identity, like experiences and relationships, to help students clarify important elements of their identities. 

Teaching Strategy

Bodysculpting - Using Theater to Explore the Holocaust

Help students debrief materials that evoke strong feelings with this teaching strategy that uses nonverbal forms of expression to process powerful, emotional content. 

Teaching Strategy

Café Conversations

The Café Conversation strategy helps students practice perspective-taking by requiring them to represent a particular point-of-view in a small group discussion. 


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Everything you need to get started teaching your students about racism, antisemitism and prejudice.