To be considered a competent educator, there are almost 2000 strategies, concepts, and terms that you must know. However, since teachers wear so many hats, who has the time to learn them all? Don’t worry; we have you covered. In this series, we will discuss all the teaching and learning strategies, concepts, and terms that you need to know to be considered an effective educator. There are over 70 articles in this series, so pace yourself. We recommend reading one piece per weekday, which will allow you to complete the series in three to four months. We hope you enjoy it.
Shaping A method for teaching a new skill or habit by reinforcing the small steps involved in reaching the objective.
Shared Emotional Connections The interactions of individuals in a group which draw them together. The importance, desirability, frequency, and intensity of these interactions are an important element for creating a sense of community.
Shared Reading An activity in which the teacher reads aloud from a book while students follow along with a large book, personal copies of the book, or from a class chart.
Shared Writing (interactive writing) In this writing approach, which works well for struggling and emergent writers, the child and adult share a pencil. The adult writes the majority of the sections, and the child writes what they can handle.
Sheltered Instruction A strategic approach to teaching English language learners that will allow learners to understand content as they develop language proficiency.
Sheltered Instruction Observation Protocol (SIOP) Model A research-based model of sheltered instruction designed to allow English language learners to grasp academic content while developing language proficiency.
Shelters Persons that children can seek out whenever their safety or survival needs are threatened. These persons most often are used by gifted children who may feel intellectually, socially, or developmentally threatened. Ideally, a shelter should be an empathic counselor who is aware of the local conditions related to economic status and ethnic backgrounds and who is genuinely concerned about a child’s welfare.
Short Vowel Vowels that do not make their letter name sounds the same way as long vowels. Vowels are traditionally enunciated with their short sound only if there is only a single vowel in contained in the word or syllable, and at least one consonant trails it. There are a few exceptions to this rule, such as the word truth.
Short-Term or Working Memory The component of memory which stores a limited amount of information for a few seconds.
Showcase Portfolio A collection of the best pieces of a student’s work to celebrate and reinforce learning accomplishments.
Sight Vocabulary Words that students encounter in print and recognize without hesitation and with ease.
Sight Words Any word that a child recognizes by sight.
Sign Language A stage in early childhood (between the ages of nine and thirteen months) where infants primarily use gestures to communicate their wants and needs.
Sign Systems Symbols created by cultural phenomena and within specific social contexts that help people with reasoning, reflection, communication, and problem-solving.
Signal Words Words that give readers clues about what type of pattern is dominant in a section of text.
Silent Reading When a child reads silently to themselves.
Similarity A tendency of a child to identify with the parent who they perceive as most like himself or herself.
Simulations Group learning activities in which let students delve into real-life issues by developing a system of rules or a system for maintaining rules. Examples include launching imaginary banks or stores.
Simulations Simulations are akin to video games, which automatically make them more attractive to your students. There are many types of simulations that can help instruct children, teens, and college students. For example, there are flight simulators that can be used to help highlight different areas, such as the historic flight of Amelia Earhart across the Atlantic Ocean and various Physics concepts. Simulations can be made as presentations or be provided on different devices.
Site-based Management/Decision-Making Is the process by which all school-related decisions are made at the school level with input from all interested stakeholders. As these decisions are taken by parties who are based at the school, they generally more accurately represent the true needs of the school.
Sketch and Label Connections A teaching idea designed to help students express a connection through visual representations. Students read the text and consider a connection that they can make, sketch the connection, and label it (text-self, text-text, or text-world). They must then explain why it is that type of connection. Sketch and label connections can be done before, during, and after reading a text.
Sketch to Stretch A reading comprehension strategy that involves sketching to create and share personal understandings of the text after reading.
Skimming Reading that happens at a fast pace and often used when trying to derive general ideas as to what a passage is about.
Skinner Box A tool, developed by B.F. Skinner, for animal behavior observation in experiments involving operant conditioning.
Slow-to-Warm-Up Child A child who is very slow to adapt to new situations but often have many of the characteristics of the positive behaviors found in an easy child. Adults often find that it requires sustained contact to elicit a positive response from the child.
Small Groups A flexible grouping strategy where three to five students meet to accomplish several different purposes. Small groups typically only last for around twenty minutes.
Snapshots of History A teaching idea in which students create a tableau—a representation of a scene with groups of people who are stationary and silent—using an image of a historical event and then write a narrative in the first-person from the perspective of a specific individual in their tableau.