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F A I R F A X

Strategies

Overview

C O U N T Y

P U B L I C

S C H O O L S

BEST PR ACTI CES

f o r Te a c h i n g a n d L e a r n i n g

The diagram in this brochure highlights the big ideas and

Teachers who effectively implement the Best Practices

organizes the information into broad categories.

for Teaching and Learning are differentiating instruction

A complete list of strategies for Best Practices for Teaching

to meet the academic, social, and emotional needs of all

and Learning is provided below.

students. The Best Practices for Teaching and Learning allow

Create a Student-Centered Learning Environment


Arrangement of Classroom
Displays
Tools
Safe and Positive Environment
Procedures and Routines
Relationships

Plan and Teach for Student Learning


Teacher collaboration
Data Driven
Common Assessments
Content Knowledge

teachers to customize learning for each of their students.


Imagine a classroom where students are working both
independently and in flexible groups to summarize
information. Students have choice over how they
demonstrate understanding. One group is performing
a dramatization. Another group is creating a visual
representation. Some students are using anchor charts to
help them, while others work with the teacher on specific
concepts and skills. The teacher checks for understanding
and paces the lesson according to student needs. In this
example, not only are numerous Best Practices being
employed (i.e. grouping of students, displays, engagement,
checking for understanding), but they are being used to

Instructional Delivery Model

provide appropriate learning experiences for very different

Lessons Aligned with POS and pacing guides

learners. These strategies provide a pathway to reach all

Engagement

students in the most effective way.

Cooperative Learning
Student Communication

To learn more about how to implement these strategies,

Critical and Creative Thinking

go to http://fcps.blackboard.com and log onto FCPS 24-7

Grouping of Students

Learning. Click on the Best Practices for Teaching and

High-Yield Instructional Strategies

Learning module.

Appropriate Instructional Resources

Assess Student Learning


Goal Setting and Reflection
Checking for Understanding
Feedback
Assessments
End of Unit and End of Course
Large Scale External Assessments

Common
Language
Common
Definitions

S
Cre
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Envir
Arrangement of Classroom

Organize classroom for a variety of


learning opportunities that encourage both
whole-group and small-group teacher-directed
activities as well as independent and cooperative
learning experiences.

Safe and Positive Environment

Relationships

Develop and communicate learning


targets, define success in reaching those
targets, and provide opportunities for students to
set age appropriate goals, establish a plan, measure
progress, and reflect on accomplishments.

Checking for Understanding

Create a learning environment where students feel that they belong


to the learning community and feel free to take
ke risks. Acknowledge
and embrace the home, community culture, language
nguage
heritage, and background experiences of all students.
dents.

Build collaborative and respectful relationships


with students, colleagues, and parents. Consistently
encourage, support, and appropriately challenge
students to ensure student success. Facilitate
development of relationships among students
to promote mutual respect and
support in the classroom.

Assess
Stud
ent
Lea
Goal Setting and Reflection
rni
ng
Use a range of approaches to identify what students have learned
up to a certain point,
poin gaps in student learning, areas where
have exceeded expectations, and questions
students hav
students wish to explore.
student

BEST
PRACTICES
for Teaching and Learning

Content Knowledge
Develop a deep understanding of assigned content
areas. Design and differentiate learning that is relevant
and challenging for all students.

As
Assessments
Evaluate student understanding of specific
concepts and skills to demonstrate that the goals
of the instruction are met and to inform
instructional programs.

Engagement
Actively engage, challenge, and motivate students.
Provide varied and ample opportunities for students to
practice and process new information.

Teacher Collaboration
Participate in collaborative learning teams (CLT)
to analyze data and collaboratively plan for
instruction and assessment.

Plan
g
n
i
and Teac
n
r
a
h for Student Le
For a full list of Best Practices for Teaching and Learning strategies, refer to the Strategies section of this brochure
or access the website by logging into FCPS 24-7 and clicking on the Best Practices module.