It takes time to make the use of study team and teaching strategies a part of your day-to-day teaching. So does developing the ability to quickly choose appropriate strategies on a case-by-case basis. If you find you have not been using the study team and teaching strategies suggested in the lessons as well as you might, commit to picking just one to use this week and use it every day so that you and your students become comfortable using it.
One strategy that most teachers find easy to implement is the Huddle. You can use a Huddle to disseminate information or check for understanding. Another strategy that works well for students to share their thinking and see other ways of thinking is the Swapmeet. A Swapmeet can be done half way through or at the end of a problem or set of problems by sending two people from each team to a new team to share their work. After sufficient time, the team members who have been swapped return to their original team to share what they have learned.
Make it a goal this week to notice the positive behaviors in your classroom and to acknowledge them. When students see you giving attention to positive behaviors, they are more inclined to be on task so they, too, can have a similar “pat on the back.” Saying things like, “I have two teams ready to go” instead of “I have six teams who aren’t ready yet” and “I see a team that has solved the problem in two ways and is working on a third way” instead of “Hurry up, you are off task” often raises the behavior of all students.