Constructivist Teaching Strategies for Diverse Middle-Level Classrooms / Edition 3

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Constructivist Methods for Teaching in Diverse Middle-Level Classrooms is designed to prepare prospective middle-level teachers for their first classroom experience and to help in-service teachers improve their teaching skills. Each of the themes in this text addresses a major goal set by the National Middle School Association or the Carnegie Council on Adolescent development. The book has three themes: constructivism, multiculturalism, and a proactive approach to teaching - all topics of importance to middle-level teachers.


  • Each chapter opens with a graphic organizer, showing a clear picture of how the major parts relate to each other, followed by objectives and connecting statements.
  • Each chapter has a case study of a real event that is happening today in a middle school, written by an educator working directly with or in that school.
  • 24 proactive silk-screened boxes engage the readers in activities that promote proactive behavior.
  • 24 reflective silk-screened boxes cause the readers to stop and relate the content to their experiences.
  • 28 silk-screened boxes, most written by state Teachers of the Year provide practical tips from some of the nation's brightest teachers.
  • Each chapter is summarized with a "Recap of Major Ideas," "Summary," and "Suggested readings and resources."

Author bio:

Ken Henson is dean of the School of Education at The Citadel. A former middle grades science and math teacher, he received both a National Science Foundation Fellowship and a Fulbright Scholarship. In 2000, the Association of Teacher Educators and Wadsworth Publishers named Mr. Henson the Distinguished Teacher Educator of the Year.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780205391813
  • Publisher: Allyn & Bacon, Inc.
  • Publication date: 10/24/2003
  • Edition number: 3
  • Pages: 432
  • Product dimensions: 7.52 (w) x 9.13 (h) x 0.31 (d)

Table of Contents


1. Teaching and You.

The Teaching Profession.

The Teacher's Attitude.


Role of Constructivist Teachers.

Cooperative Learning Programs.

Sample Programs.

Conducting Research.

Using Research to Improve Teaching.

Benefits of Conducting Research.


2. Using Performance Objectives.

Outcome-Based Education.

Education Expectations: Aims, Goals, Objectives.

Performance Objectives in Three Domains

3. Long Range Planning.

Curriculum Determiners.

Concept Development.

The Question of Content.

Researching Higher Levels of Thinking.

The Unit Plan.

4. Planning Daily Lessons.

The Daily Lesson Plan.

Applying Constructivism to Daily Planning.

The Curriculum.

Implementing the Lesson Plan.

Learning Cycle Theory.

Sample Daily Lesson Plan.


5. Evaluation.

Past Use of Evaluation in Schools.

Formative Evaluation.

Summative Evaluation.

Competitive Evaluation.

Grading Systems.

6. Test Administration, Administration, and Scoring

The Teacher's Responsibility.

Curriculum Alignment and Authentic Tests.

Types of Tests.

The Purpose of Testing.

Test Construction.

Writing Test Questions.

Higher Level Questions: Cognitive Domain.

A Balance Is Needed.

Affective Domains.

Questioning Techniques.

Test Administration.

Accountability: Standardized and Alternative Tests.


7. Individualizing Instruction.

The Need to Individualize.

In-Class Ability Grouping.

Grade Contracts.

Using Instructional Models.

Mastery Learning.

Matching Students' Learning Styles and Teachers' Teaching Styles.

Using Microcomputers to Individualize.

Programs for At-Risk Students.

Other Ways to Involve Students.



8. Teaching in Multicultural Classrooms.

Taking a Positive Approach.

Personalizing Teaching.

A Reason for Optimism.

The Teacher's Decision.

The Teacher's Role.

Selecting Ethnic Materials.

Academic Achievement from Everyone.

The Teacher's Wider Role.

Using Process to Praise Diversity.


9. Teaching Strategies.

Developing Lessons.

The Lecture.

The Case Study Method.


Inquiry Learning.


Discovery Learning.

Simulation Games.

Cooperative Learning (Revisited).

10. Communications

The Need for Communications.

Messages to Communicate.

Verbal Communication Skills

Classifying Questions.

The Questioning Grid.



Nonverbal Communication Kills.

Effective Schools Research.


11. Motivation.

Student Attitudes Toward the Subject.

Student Attitudes Toward Themselves.

Arts Education Affects Students' Attitudes Toward Themselves.

Student Attitudes Toward the Teacher.

The Role of Humor.


Keeping Students Challenged.

Clarifying Goals and Procedures.

Using Students' Opinions.

Student Contracts as Motivators.

Grades, Tests, Projects.

Other Strategies.

12. From Discipline to Self-Discipline.

A Preview of Discipline.

Discipline: A Definition.

Desirable Teacher Attitudes Toward Discipline.

Teacher Efficacy.

Discipline: A Continuum of Views.

Management Theories and Education.

Classroom Management Models.

Models Developed Specifically for Education.

Trends in Discipline Today.

The Cascade Model for Classroom Discipline.

Avoiding Discipline Problems.

Dealing with Problems.

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