Strategic teaching means more than developing a great lesson plan for a group of children and employing it the same way with each individual child. Strategic teaching requires both creativity and the ability to recognize an opportunity from the teacher herself to come up with a way to connect with a student and make the lesson a meaningful one. This type of teaching method requires a teacher to be very observant and able to understand each of her students individually – how they learn, what they have trouble with and what motivates them. Understanding how a child typically goes about solving a problem is key to introducing new ways of solving problems that builds upon what they already know while creating a spark designed to get them thinking more creatively about ideas.
One way to make sure that you know the information necessary for successful strategic teaching is to use pre-assessment techniques. This ensures that you have a thorough understanding of each child’s reading, writing and speaking ability and you can use that information when identifying moments when strategic teaching would be a benefit to your student.
A successful strategic teaching method is to relate specific skills that are being taught in class to real-life problems. Opportunities may arise when a child is complaining about a situation in which something that you’ve learned in school could apply to the situation. Frame the problem in a way to get them to think about the subject studied. When the child figures out the problem, they’ll be more likely to understand the value of the skill being taught.
Untangle a child’s thinking pattern by asking them how they came up with an answer – especially if it’s wrong. Being able to identify how the child came to a certain conclusion is one of the best ways to employ strategic teaching methods in your classroom. Use the same logic to steer the child in the direction of the correct answer and they’ll be more likely to understand the problem.