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Teach Like a Champion Field Guide: A Practical Resource to Make the 49 Techniques Your Own 1st Edition

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Field Guide
ISBN-13: 978-1118116821
ISBN-10: 1118116828
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Editorial Reviews Review

Q&A with Author Doug Lemov
Author Doug Lemov

How does the Field Guide relate to the original Teach Like a Champion book?

The Teach Like a Champion Field Guide offers teachers a pragmatic guide for mastering the techniques profiled in the original Teach Like a Champion. Learning about the techniques used by effective teachers is a first step in the process of harnessing a teacher’s potential. In my role as managing director at Uncommon Schools I’ve found that teachers need to practice, to road test new techniques, to get feedback, and to try again. They also need to reflect upon areas to target for development. This Field Guide is designed to help teachers do just that.

With this book teachers will be able to find and strengthen their signature skills. It’s true that no champion teacher is without weaknesses, even those who take our collective breath away. What champions have in common is a portfolio of five or six skills at which they excel. Of course the skills aren’t the same ones for every teacher—the combinations are as unique as the applications. But it’s these skills that drive much of their success. The lesson from this is: strengthen your strengths as much as your weaker areas, make your strengths exceptional, even while you broaden the range of areas where you have mastery.

Where should teachers and instructional leaders begin their work with the techniques?

Given that there are 49 techniques I’m frequently asked, Where to start?

Every teacher and facilitator will approach this question differently. The way you move through the book and use it to enhance your teaching practice will be as individual as you are. Still, here are some initial thoughts:

If you wanted to begin with the two techniques that were most likely to revolutionize what I call “the culture of academic expectations” then I’d suggest you choose Cold Call and No Opt Out. But I realize not all teachers are looking for this kind of revolution as a starting point. In fact some of the best teachers argue that great classrooms rest on a culture of strong everyday routines that give teachers the power to teach efficiently and students the power to excel. These kinds of routines often free up astounding amounts of time for teaching. So, for many teachers starting with the techniques such as Entry Routine and Tight Transitions, in Section Five, numbers 28 through 35, makes a lot of sense. Another possible place to begin is with planning techniques such as Begin with the End and Double Plan. I hope you find that wherever you begin your work, the Teach Like a Champion Field Guide will help you make a strong start and sustain your practice.

From the Back Cover

In his acclaimed book, Teach Like a Champion, Doug Lemov shared 49 techniques that are essential to the art of teaching.

In this Field Guide he shows how to implement, customize, and master those techniques in practice.

The activities are designed to help teachers reflect, self-assess, and discover what techniques are most valuable to them. Teachers may evaluate their comfort and confidence in using the 49 techniques, easily compare notes with fellow teachers, and maintain a record of progress. More importantly, teachers will be able to unlock the talent and skill waiting in their students, no matter how many previous classrooms, schools, or teachers have been unsuccessful.

"As a K–12 administrator and professional development trainer, I find that Lemov's work has provided our faculty with a shared vocabulary, a common set of expectations, and techniques that can be implemented immediately." —Mark Wise, supervisor for curriculum and instruction, Plainsboro Regional School District, West Windsor, New Jersey

"Teach Like a Champion, both the book and Field Guide, offer hard-hitting ways to help teachers create classrooms that embody high expectations. This is professional development in its best form."—Kelli Seaton, principal, Mastery Charter School-Pickett Campus, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

"The 49 techniques have had a powerful impact within our district. From Teach Like a Champion we've gained a deeper understanding of teaching, and we're excited to use this Field Guide to continue our progress."—Terry Grier, superintendent, Houston Independent School District, Houston, Texas

A few of the practical tools found inside:

Troubleshooting. What challenges do you find when implementing the technique in your classroom? Solutions included!

Practice with Study Group or Partners. An array of discussion topics, observation worksheets, role plays, and skills exercises.

Analyze the Champions. View rich video clips of the techniques in action and answer accompanying questions for further reflection.


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 480 pages
  • Publisher: Jossey-Bass; 1 edition (January 3, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1118116828
  • ISBN-13: 978-1118116821
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 1 x 11 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (54 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #53,616 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

From the Publisher

Guide Type Handbook/Overview Workbook Handbook/Overview
Audience Level Beginner Beginner to Intermediate/Advanced Beginner
Number of Pages 352 480 504
Author(s) Doug Lemov Doug Lemov Doug Lemov
Publication Date 4/6/2010 1/3/2012 1/7/2015
Edition 1st 1st 2nd
Description The original edition. Powerful classroom mgmt. and motivation techniques: concrete, specific, and easy to put into action. Includes 25 video clips. Aligns with the original edition. Implement, customize, and master the techniques with self-assessment, partnering, troubleshooting. Includes 30 video clips. New edition that customers of the original TLaC book will also need. One part revision, one part sequel. Huge amt. of totally brand new content. Includes 75 video clips.

More About the Author

The book is my best effort to describe not what theory says you should do to "win" in the classroom--especially in the toughest ones--but what the very best teachers actually do--those who take kids of poverty and reliably make high achievers out of them. To write Teach Like a Champion I watched thousands of classes and videos of classes taught by teachers with incredible results, and I put everything I thought I saw them doing through the "Monday Test." If I felt it wasn't something I (or you) could do at 8:25am on Monday morning, it was out.

Ultimately, teachers whom I watched and learned from, the unacknowledged heroes in America, are the true authors of the ideas in the book. To the degree that they inspire you, thank them. By the way, that's two of them, Bob Zimmerli and Kelli Ragin, on the cover.

As for me, I'm a former teacher, principal, and consultant. Now I'm a managing director at Uncommon Schools, an organization that starts and runs exceptionally high-performing public schools in urban centers in New York and New Jersey. I oversee Uncommon's upstate schools in Rochester and Troy and lead teacher trainings both across Uncommon and externally. I get to work with amazing folks (leaders and teachers) at such organizations as Teacher U, KIPP, Teach For America, Achievement First, Building Excellent Schools, New Schools for New Orleans, and New Leaders for New Schools. And of course the incredible people at Uncommon.

I went to Hamilton College and then got graduate degrees from Indiana University and the Harvard Business School.

You can check out some videos of the hero teachers whose techniques I describe in the book at

or at

You may find new observations and other new content there as well. My interest in exploring, analyzing, and reporting on great teaching is never exhausted.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

28 of 28 people found the following review helpful By Kathryn's Mommy VINE VOICE on February 12, 2012
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I own the first book written by Doug Lemov: Teach Like a Champion. For those of you that are unfamiliar with it, Mr. Lemov gives teachers 49 strategies that will help students gain the motivation to go to college. His book has gained national attention and the respect of teachers everywhere. Professional Development Days are sometimes built around his book. What would be a better idea than to create a resource to grasp and implement the 49 techniques?

First of all this book reminds you of a workbook. Each technique has its own "chapter" or section. When you go to any of the techniques, you will pretty much find the following format:

1. Overview: summarizes and describes the technique
2. Where Am I Now?: you determine IF you use this technique already and, if so, what level you're at
3. Analyze the Champions: If there is a 'demo' on the DVD of a professional educator, you'll see this section next. If not, it's absent.
4. Expand Your Skills and Repertoire: In this section you take what you are already able to do and, as the section states, expand them. He gives examples.
5. Practice with Study Groups or Partners: This is a great tool IF you are using this book within a study group. If you are reading this on your own, I would suggest doing it anyway.
6. Try __________ in the classroom: _________ is the technique that you're reading about and learning. This is where you get to take what you've been learning and apply it.
7. Troubleshoot: Got some challenges? This will help you.
8. Be Creative: Take the technique and go one step further with it.
9. Sustain your Progress: Using a chart you will keep track of how you are using the technique.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By C. Fischer VINE VOICE on April 9, 2012
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
As with most field guides (aka workbooks) it really helps to have read the original book first! Some of the negative reviewers here basically went directly to this workbook first. The true value in this, as in any ,workbook is to give additional comments, hints, and reviews of the principles and examples expressed in the main book. One invaluable extra provided by the field guide is the video presentation and analysis of the 30 champion teachers actually using these techniques in the classroom. Some people seemed overwhelmed by the amount of detail and repetition in the field guide. To them I say - be selective! There is no rule that you have to try to apply ALL the techniques immediately! By choosing a few that you would like to learn, work on, or just improve, you make the experience less daunting. If you can prioritize your goals you will find both books very handy for the PRACTICAL lessons included here, as opposed to the pedagogical pablum often included with most educational texts.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By R. Smith VINE VOICE on June 25, 2012
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
As a community college professor, I wish I would have utilized a guide like this in my early years. Yes, 49 techniques ARE a lot of techniques. Most good teachers have naturally mastered a dozen of these techniques. When I was young and a student myself, my teachers would have had no problems with employing the majority of these techniques with easy success. Nowadays, with discipline and respect in the public school at such an all time low, employing these techniques will be most difficult. However, the use of these techniques are ESSENTIAL in getting control of your class early on. The guide is broken down into seven sections, and not necessarily in proper order. For instance, section 5 is titled "creating a strong classroom culture". This section includes techniques that should be focused on in the first class session. Section 6 is "setting and maintaining high behavioral expectations", once again important early on.

There is NO WAY you will not be helped if you study and employ these techniques early on in your teaching career. This guide would also be wonderful to use as a resource for teachers who meet for lunch or after the school day to discuss successes and failures and how the techniques were being employed.

Also, the CD contains 30 video clips showing champion teachers using the techniques. This is great, but I wish there were clips highlighting each of the 49 techniques individually.

This is a guide that every teacher should have on their shelf for reference and constant reading throughout their career as they develop into a champion teacher.

As every teacher will attest, there is nothing like meeting up with a past student who seeks you out to tell you how successful they are in life due in part to your teaching. This guide, put to proper use, will give you that experience many times in your future.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By John Jorgensen VINE VOICE on February 19, 2012
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
This is a companion to Teach Like a Champion: 49 Techniques that Put Students on the Path to College, of which I'm sorry to say I know next to nothing beyond the information contained in the field guide. However, I feel this field guide can be used without any familiarity with that book, though I'm sure it would help.

What the two TLaC products share is a commitment to 49 specific techniques for classroom management. Some are obvious and hardly cutting edge, like using a Do Now. Others are, perhaps not revolutionary, but at least quite progressive, like Board=Paper, a section on modeling note taking for students (rather than assume someone else taught them in an earlier stage of their education and being annoyed to realize they've not been meeting your unspoken expectations). A few require a good deal of planning and/or legwork, like "Begin With the End," which has lesson plans deriving from preexisting unit plans (though I do think that in the end that amount of work will turn out to be worthwhile, as before too long it will make lesson planning much easier). Most are extremely simple--circulating around the classroom, breaking down complex tasks into step-by-step instructions, et cetera. I was a little skeptical about whether a couple of the techniques were worthwhile, but most looked to be very much so and there were none I was prepared to write off as impractical or a waste of time. I think just about everything here is worth a try.

The workbook is set up in a variety of formats for each exercise, some of which make planning the implementation of a technique simpler, others which allow for realtime tracking of a teacher's progress in developing mastery.
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