The following strategies have been proven to impact student learning in a positive manner and support best teaching practices (Gregory, 2005).

Recognizing similarities and differences, using metaphors and analogies
According to Marzano et al. (2001), when students are engaged in activities to identify similarities and differences, the average percentile gain is about 39%.

template example

Compare / contrast:

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Venn Diagram:
template example

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Synectics: students look at problems in a more creative way.
Concept attainment: students discover and distiguish characteristics of a concept. template examples
Concept formation: students explore ideas making connections between the concepts.
Creating metaphors

Creating analogies

Comparison Matrix

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Summarizing and note taking
The meta-analysis of summarizing states there is about a 32% gain in achievement and when students are engaged in note taking, there is about a 30% gain in overall achievement (2001).

  1. Delete material that is unnecessary.
  2. Delete redundant material.
  3. Substitute terms.
  4. Select or reinvent sentences.

Summary frames

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Mind maps: template examples

Concept webs

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Reciprocal - The class is divided into two groups and each group learns a concept. The students then teach the other group their concept.

Reinforcing efforts and providing recognition
Generally speaking, there is about a 35% gain in achievement when students’ efforts are reinforced (2001).

Effort and achievement rubric
Goal setting and feedback / reflection

Assigning homework and practice
Homework and practice will increase a students' performance by about 14% in achievement although the effect size is greater the higher the grade level (2001).

Extension of application in interesting and create ways.

Generating non-linguistic representation
Non-linguistic representation has an effect of about a 31% gain (2001).

Mind maps
Graphic organizers: Toolbox of graphic organizers

Using cooperative learning
Marzano et al. state cooperative learning increases student achievement by about 21% (2001).

Shared reading
Guided reading
Reciprocal learning
Peer editing
Buddy reading
Choral reading
Progressive writing
Literature circles

Setting objectives and providing feedback
The research states that when students set goals and are provided with feedback, both percentile gains in achievment are about 25% (2001).

Goal setting
Clear criteria
High expectations
Appropriate challenge and choice

Generating and testing hypotheses
Students generally recieve a percentile gain of 19% when generating and testing hypotheses (2001).

Research papers
Persuasive writing

Providing questions, cues, and advance organizers
About a 23% achievement gain can be expected when students are provided with questions and cues (2001). Questions can be based on the levels of Bloom's taxonomy to reach a variety of levels of thinking.

Levels of Bloom’s taxonomy
  • Knowledge: Recalling facts and remembering previously learned information
  1. What is the definition for...?
  2. What happened after...?
  3. Recall the facts.
  4. Whate were the characteristics of...?
  5. Which is true or false?
  6. How many...?
  7. Who was the...?
  8. Tell in your own words.
  9. Describe the...
  10. Make a time line of events
  11. Make a facts chart
  12. Write a list of ....steps in...facts about...
  13. List all the people in the story.
  14. Make a chart showing...
  15. Make an acrostic.
  16. Recite a poem.

  • Comprehension: Understanding the meaning and how and why of events.
  1. Why are the ideas similar?
  2. In your own words retell the story of...
  3. What do you think could happen?
  4. How are these ideas different?
  5. Explain what happened after.
  6. What are some examples?
  7. Can you provide a definition of...?
  8. Who was the key character?
  9. Cut out or draw pictures to show an event.
  10. Illustrate what you think the main idea was.
  11. Make a cartoon strip showing the sequence of...
  12. Write and perform a play based on the...
  13. Compare this _ with _.
  14. Construct a model of.....
  15. Write a news report.
  16. Prepare a flow chart to show the sequence...

  • Application: Using the skills and knowledge in another situation.
  1. What is another instance of...?
  2. Demonstrate the way to....
  3. Which one is most like...?
  4. What questions would you ask?
  5. Whick factores would you change?
  6. Could this have happened in...? Why or why not?
  7. How would you organize these ideas?
  8. Construct a model to demonstrate using it.
  9. Make a display to illustrate one event.
  10. Make a collection about...
  11. Design a relief map to include relevant information about an event.
  12. Scan a collection of photographs to illustrate a particular aspect of the study.
  13. Create a mural to depict...

  • Analysis: Breaking down information into smaller parts.
  1. What are the component parts of...?
  2. What steps are important in the process of...?
  3. If...then...
  4. What other conclusions can you reach about....that have not been mentioned?
  5. The difference between the fact and the hypothesis is...
  6. The solution would be to...
  7. What is the relationship between...and...?
  8. Design a questionnaire about...
  9. Conduct an investigation to produce...
  10. Make a flow chart to show...
  11. Contruct a graph to show...
  12. Put on a play about...
  13. terms of identified criteria.
  14. Prepare a report about the area of study.

  • Synthesis: Combine elements to create new ideas.
  1. Can you design a...?
  2. Why not compose a song about...?
  3. Why don't you devise your own way to...?
  4. Can you create new and unusual uses for...?
  5. Can you develop a proposal for...?
  6. How would you deal with...?
  7. Invent a scheme that would...
  8. Create a model that shows your new ideas.
  9. Devise an original plan or experiment for...
  10. Finish the incomplete...
  11. Make a hypothesis about...
  12. that it will...
  13. Propose a method to...
  14. Prescribe a way to...
  15. Give the book a new title...

  • Evaluation: Rate the value of the information based on a set of criteria.
  1. Appraise the chances for...
  2. Grade or rank the...
  3. What do you think should be the outcome?
  4. What solution do you favor and why?
  5. Which systems are best? Worst?
  6. Rate the realtive value of these ideas to...
  7. Which is the better bargain?
  8. Prepare a list of criteria you would use to judge a...Indicate priority ratings you would give.
  9. Conduct a debate about an issue.
  10. Prepare an annotated bibliography...
  11. Form a discussion panel on the topic of...
  12. Prepare a case to present your opinions about...
  13. List some common assumptions about...Rationalize your reactions.

Agenda maps
Guided reading
Diagrams and charts

Prioritizing or Ranking Ladder – The students place the most important item on the top of the ladder and those with descending importance below accordingly. template example

Sequencing Orgnizer – This shows a chain of events or how the steps and processes of a task are related.

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Word Web – This organizer shows attributes of a topic and is good for brainstorming.
template example

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Pinwheel - This is used for classifying and organizing information. The topic is placed in the center and attributes on each arm. Information supporting the attributes are linked with the radial spokes.

Venn Diagram: Circle and boxes
Flow Chart



Gregory, G.H., (2005). Differentiating instruction with style; Maximum achievement. Thousand Oaks, California: Corwin Press.

Marzano, R.J., Pickering, D.J., Pollock, J.E., (2001). Classroom instruction that works; Research based strategies for increasing student achievement. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Pearson Educational Inc.