Better Learning Through Structured Teaching

A Framework for the Gradual Release of Responsibility

Better Learning Through Structured Teaching is the definitive guide to the gradual release of responsibility - an instructional framework any teacher can use to help students to be more successful and self-directed learners. To gradually release responsibility is to equip students with what they need to master content and develop new competencies. On a day-to-day basis, it means delivering lessons intentionally structured to incorporate four interrelated phases:

  • Focused Instruction ("I do it") that sets students up for cognitive apprenticeship by establishing lesson purpose, modeling strategies and skills, and sharing information and insight.

  • Guided Instruction ("We do it together") that incorporates targeted prompts, cues, and questions to scaffold understanding.

  • Collaborative Learning ("You do it together") that allows students to consolidate and extend understanding through accountable group talks built on discussion and cooperative problem solving.

  • Independent Learning ("You do it alone") that provides students opportunities to practice and apply the skills and knowledge they've acquired to create authentic products and ask new questions.

Meeting Dates and Times

This is a self-paced book study that will last for six weeks. There are NO virtual meetings and NO face-to-face sessions. Each Monday, a list of discussion questions will be posted to the book study Google Classroom. Participants should answer the questions and respond to their colleagues' posts. The first discussion questions for chapter 1 will be posted on Monday, June 27. The final questions for chapter 6 will be posted on August 1. All questions and discussions should be completed by Friday, August 5.


Zachary Waddicor
Assistant Superintendent for Teaching and Learning

Target Audience

This book study is open to and appropriate for all educators.


There is no cost for participation. Participants will receive a free copy of the text used for the book study.


15 PDPs will be awarded for full participation.

Alignment to District Goals

Objective 1

Meeting the Needs of All Learners

  • 1.1 - Strengthen Tier 1 Instruction through the use of pest practices.

  • 1. 2 - Address the academic needs of students by removing barriers and strengthening inclusive practices.

Objective 2

Personalized Learning

  • 2.1 - Provide training to educators on way to personalize learning and other best practices.

Objective 3

Strengthen Instruction

  • 3.4 - Provide opportunities for educators to collaborate to develop the district's curriculum through PLCs.

Objective 4

Strategic Use of Data

  • 4.2 - Develop and strengthen opportunities for collaboration among educators through PLCs to support the academic growth of all students.

Registration Information: Please register by Friday, June 10, 2022

For questions about this professional learning opportunity, please contact Assistant Superintendent for Teaching and Learning, Zachary Waddicor.