The Gradual Release Model is a best practice instructional model where teachers strategically transfer the responsibility in the learning process from the teacher to the students (Fisher & Frey). Typically, the model of teaching has four phases: I DO- where the teacher models the lesson objective in a focus lesson, WE DO- guided instruction with both input from the teacher and the students, YOU DO TOGETHER: Collaborative learning in small groups or partners and YOU DO ALONE- independent practice.
Tips & Tricks
- Explicit: Being very explicit during the I Do and We Do phases helps students to more readily be able to take on the objective in the later phases. Teachers should model their thinking process, share non-examples and provide lots of details and support.
- All 4 Phases: In order for this model of instruction to be most effective, all 4 phases need to be present. Although the order may differ in some cases, it is vital to make sure each phase is completed.
- Behavior Practice: Different behaviors are necessary during the different phases. It is important to actively teach and practice the appropriate behaviors for each phase. Behaviors may include body placement and body moves, voice level, effective language for communication, active listening postures and how to transfer from one activity to another. Teachers may want to try using a Looks Like/Sounds Like Anchor Chart to teach and practice the necessary behaviors.
Tools & Templates
- Effective Use of the Gradual Release Model (Fisher, 2008)
- Gradual Release Model Handout (Levy, 2007)
- ACPS Lesson Plan Template: This template provides support for using the gradual release model