Great Academic Teaching and Learning

Great academic teaching isn’t a gift or a natural born talent. It is a skill set–one that all teachers can build and refine. The following topics are ones that might serve as a good starting place for a customized plan:


kids reading
Challenge through Choice

Based on my newest book, Learning to Choose, Choosing to Learn, this work can help teachers use choice in everyday teaching and learning to boost intrinsic motivation, help students self-differentiate their work, and find more positive energy and joy in daily schoolwork. Some specific topics might include:

  • Creating good choices, and helping students learn to choose well
  • Teaching metacognition, boosting student ownership, and creating positive learning environments
  • Differentiating learning (and teaching self-differentiation!)
  • Using choice in literacy, math, science, and any other content areaContact Mike
  • Using a step-by-step process for implementing choice well


kids researching
Social and Emotional Learning for Academic Success

Have you ever looked at your district/state standards through the lens of social and emotional learning (SEL)? Many academic standards, including Common Core State Standards, have SEL skills embedded throughout. Students must persevere to solve math problems, take others’ perspectives and accept guidance from others as writers, and engage in collaborative conversations in all content areas. Additionally, in order to be successful with just about any academic pursuit, students need an environment that is safe and supportive, and one that will help them develop a growth mindset. Some specific topics might include:

  • What is social and emotional learning?
  • Identifying SEL skills in academic standards
  • Developmentally appropriate practice
  • Specific strategies to teach SEL skills (modeling, role play, activities, etc.)
  • Personalized learning
  • School climate and culture
  • Respectful disciplineContact Mike
  • Teacher language that leads to a growth mindset


research with teacher 6th grade, cropped
Personalized Learning through Independent Research

When students have the chance to explore a topic about which they have a keen interest, amazing learning can happen. Based on my first book, The Research-Ready Classroom, this work will help teachers craft independent research projects that will help personalize student learning. Though these kinds of projects can be incredibly flexible and open-ended (such as power-of-one projects), they can also fit beautifully within your school’s science and social studies curricula. Some specific topics might include:

  • Creating a classroom where students can function independently
  • Connecting content standards within thematic studies
  • Differentiation (and self-differentiation!)
  • Assessment (and student self-assessment!)
  • Effective classroom managementContact Mike
  • Social and emotional learning
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Mike did a wonderful job of giving our school helpful ways to manage and co-create an ideal classroom environment with students of all ages and backgrounds.

Kristine Kobe Assistant Teacher, Mirman School, Los Angeles, CA August 24, 2017

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Mike is a wealth of knowledge of best teaching practices. Implementing these strategies can enhance any teacher's effectiveness.

Jay Frisch Science Teacher, Mirman School, Los Angeles, CA August 24, 2017

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Mike Anderson came to our school because faculty and parents alike recognized a need for improved SEL at our school. The workshop provided practical, reasonable, researched-based tools and structures for us to adopt a common language and approach across all classrooms. I can't wait to see the shifts in action!

Tessa McKeown 1st Grade Teacher/Curriculum Coordinator, Mirman School, Los Angeles, CA August 24, 2017

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The workshop was engaging and highly informative. Mike has equipped our school tool box with strategies to cultivate reflection and student growth in fun and caring ways. They were two days well spent!

Lori Fine 4th Grade Math/Science Teacher, American Nicaraguan School, Managua, Nicaragua August 20, 2017

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Mike's workshop was very engaging and he did an outstanding job of modeling the ideas and strategies he presented to us. (Practice what you preach!)

Jason Kittles 1st Grade Teacher, American Nicaraguan School, Managua, Nicaragua August 20, 2017

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Mike Anderson
Leading Great Learning
Durham, NH
Phone: +1 413.658.7907

Leading Great Learning

Mike Anderson is an energetic, experienced, and highly sought-after educational consultant who helps facilitate great learning in schools all over the United States and beyond. He has over twenty years of experience as a teacher, consultant, presenter, and developer and has authored many books and articles about great teaching and learning.