Characteristics of Highly Effective Teaching and Learning

Expand/Collapse Characteristics of Highly Effective Teaching and Learning


This collection illustrates high quality instruction as described in The Characteristics of Highly Effective Teaching and Learning, available at the Kentucky Department of Education website.

Characteristics for both teachers and students are divided into five sections: Learning Climate, Classroom Assessment and Reflection, Instructional Rigor and Student Engagement, Instructional Relevance, and Knowledge of Content.

Resources include documents, PowerPoints, templates, and videos for teachers to use as discussion starters or for individual study.

For more information about The Characteristics of Highly Effective Teaching and Learning, contact KDE.

  • Kentucky System of Interventions

    Federal law mandates the use of professionally sound intervention based on defensible research. This overview of the Kentucky System of Interventions (KSI) assists schools and districts as they develop systems of interventions for their students using the Response to Intervention (RTI) three-tier model.

    A Guide to Kentucky System of Interventions guides schools and districts in developing a unique process for making decisions about interventions, using a variety of assessments for screening, progress monitoring, and diagnosis. The guide provides information about research-based programs to help meet their students’ needs. In addition, there is an Action Plan template to guide schools in setting short term goals as they develop their systems for intervention.

    Intervention Practices—Tier 3 looks at key factors for schools when developing a framework for meeting the needs of students who additional support to make adequate progress.

    Grades: K-12
  • Components of the Student Individual Learning Plan (ILP)

    The Individual Learning Plan, or ILP, is a web-enabled tool that allows students in grades 6-12 to explore careers related to their interests and abilities as well as plan and prepare for their future careers. Additionally, the ILP is a component of the Program Review for Practical Living and Career Studies, part of the new assessment system in Kentucky. This resource explains each component of the student part of the ILP.

    Grades: K-12
  • Differentiation for Reading in Math

    Collaborating teachers and instructional assistants support a diverse group of eighth-grade students in geometry through the use of video and interactive exercises and a graphic organizer.

    Grades: 4-12
  • Early Literacy Instruction for Middle-Level Learners

    Teacher provides her eighth grade students with explicit instruction in decoding and encoding. A typical lesson includes talking, manipulating, and writing.

    Grades: 4-12
  • Fostering High Order Thinking

    Strategies to engage students in higher order thinking, including considering the continuum of thinking when asking questions

    Grades: PreK-5
  • Four Part Vocabulary Instruction

    According to the research reviewed from the National Reading Panel (2000), vocabulary is learned both indirectly and directly. Students learn vocabulary directly when they are explicitly taught both individual words and word-learning strategies. When word meanings are difficult or complex and not part of a child’s experiences, direct instruction of vocabulary found in particular text leads to a better reading comprehension. The Four Part Vocabulary program provides information to assist teachers and schools as they improve their research based vocabulary instruction.

    Grades: K-3
  • Generating Questions To Aid Reading Comprehension

    Teacher guides students in writing questions before they begin reading a text in order to promote active reading. During the reading, students pause to generate and write questions on their graphic organizers. After reading, the students generate questions that may lead to research.

    Grades: 4-12
  • Guided Oral Reading for Diverse Abilities

    Students in this fourth-grade classroom work in simultaneous groups or at literacy work stations on specific skills identified by the teachers. Some have Individual Education Plans (IEPs) and other sudents need explicit comprehension instruction. The students are grouped according to specific skill needs, the assessment is continuous, and the groups are ever changing.

    Grades: 4-12
  • Guided Reading Group

    Fourth-grade teacher scaffolds specific comprehension thought processes her students need to synthesize what they have read.

    Grades: 4-12
  • Hybrid Lesson Template

    Blended learning combines online delivery of educational content with the best features of classroom interaction and live instruction to personalize learning, allow thoughtful reflection, and differentiate instruction from student to student across a diverse group of learners.

    How can a teacher incorporate a hybrid/blended lesson in their classroom? This lesson template will enable you to efficiently organize a lesson or unit to accomplish this goal.

    Grades: K-12
  • Ideas for Curriculum Implementation of ILPs

    The Individual Learning Plan, or ILP, is a web-enabled tool that allows students in grades 6-12 to explore careers related to their interests and abilities as well as plan and prepare for their future careers. Additionally, the ILP is a component of the Program Review for Practical Living and Career Studies, part of the new assessment system in Kentucky.

    The ILP can be used by all classroom teachers. In order for Kentucky students to maximize college and career decisions, the ILP should be incorporated into daily and weekly lesson plans. This resource provides ideas for integrating the ILP across the curriculum.

    Grades: K-12
  • ILP: Beyond Compliance

    The Individual Learning Plan, or ILP, is a web-enabled tool that allows students in grades 6-12 to explore careers related to their interests and abilities as well as plan and prepare for their future careers. Additionally, the ILP is a component of the Program Review for Practical Living and Career Studies, part of the new assessment system in Kentucky.

    This power point presentation provides information about the ILP as it relates to minimum high school graduation requirements mandated by Kentucky law. Additionally, the resource explores how the ILP can positively impact school culture.

    Grades: K-12
  • ILP Classroom Activities

    The Individual Learning Plan, or ILP, is an online education planning tool that allows students in grades 6-12 to explore careers related to their interests and abilities as well as plan and prepare for their future careers. Additionally, the ILP is a component of the Program Review for Practical Living and Career Studies, part of the new assessment system in Kentucky.

    This resource includes 14 activities that take students through each section of the ILP.

    Grades: K-12
  • ILP Completion Guide

    The Individual Learning Plan, or ILP, is an online education planning tool that allows students in grades 6-12 to explore careers related to their interests and abilities as well as plan and prepare for their future careers. Additionally, the ILP is a component of the Program Review for Practical Living and Career Studies, part of the new assessment system in Kentucky.

    This resource includes 14 activities that take students through each section of the ILP.

    Grades: K-12
  • ILP Implementation Tools

    The Individual Learning Plan, or ILP, is an online education planning tool that allows students in grades 6-12 to explore careers related to their interests and abilities as well as plan and prepare for their future careers. Additionally, the ILP is a component of the Program Review for Practical Living and Career Studies, part of the new assessment system in Kentucky.

    As schools implement the ILP in middle and high schools across Kentucky, many good ideas and creative processes have emerged. This resource includes multiple examples of implementation plans from schools throughout the state.

    Grades: K-12
  • Integrating the Arts across the Curriculum

    When the arts (drama, music, dance, etc..) are included to introduce, reinforce, or even extend a lesson within a content area, student motivation increases and often student learning improves as well. This lesson plan template supports teachers as they consider how to integrate the arts into instruction.

    Grades: K-12
  • Introducing Vocabulary

    In a lesson on the Neolithic Revolution in seventh-grade social studies, the teacher uses scaffolding and differentiation to address the needs of students with literacy challenges.

    Grades: 4-12
  • Introduction to ORQs in Primary

    Teacher Jenny Schuler (Kenton Elementary, Kenton Co., Ky.) leads her first-grade students through an introduction and guided practice writing answers to open response questions.

    Grades: PreK-3
  • "I Wonder" Reading Comprehension Strategy

    Teacher models the "I wonder..." reading comprehension strategy for her kindergarten students and leads them in guided practice.

    Grades: PreK-3
  • "Making Words" Phonics Literacy Instruction

    Teacher works with a small group of first-graders to build words, starting with two-letter words then building to five.

    Grades: PreK-3

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