Action Overview: Explore Effective Instructional Practices

This set of resources is designed to help teams of educators create a process for ongoing evaluation of effective instructional practices to make informed and intentional efforts to refine instructional practices that lead to improved student outcomes.

Why is it important to have shared understanding of effective instructional practices?

Since student outcomes are a reflection of the instruction that was provided, improving student outcomes requires intentional efforts to change instructional practices. Shared understanding of effective instructional practices provides the foundation for collective efforts to change instruction and to sustain the changes. “One cannot hope to implement change without persuading people that it is necessary. This is a task of daunting proportions that must often start by challenging people’s view of themselves and their performance.” (Evans)

Shared understanding of effective instructional practices

· is a precursor to selecting the instructional practices that will be the focus of collective efforts across the system
· informs the tools and supports that are needed to make and sustain changes in instruction
· helps to prevent the natural tendency to resort to past practices

What’s involved in developing shared understanding of effective instructional practices?

While no one instructional practice in isolation will improve student outcomes, there is a need to focus on one or two practices before addressing others. However, understanding how an individual practice is situated within a larger group of practices is an essential part of understanding the practice. Furthermore, continuous improvement efforts should identify future plans to provide support for the other practices.

Shared understanding of effective instructional practices includes

· understanding the intention behind the use of an instructional practice
· understanding the research supporting this practice
· understanding an individual practice as part of a larger set of practices
· opportunities for long term planning to address other practices

Suggested Activity

1. Activity Directions: Explore Effective Instructional Practices

· Part I: Explore current practices being used

· Part II: Explore resources for additional recommended


Evans, R. (2014). Change is What it Means This article is adapted from Seven Secrets of the Savvy School Leader. (Jossey-Bass February, 2010).