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Practice Perfect


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Table of Contents

Foreword by Dan Heath xi Preface: Why Practice? Why Now? xv Introduction: The Power of Practice 1 RETHINKING PRACTICE 21 Rule 1 Encode Success 25 Rule 2 Practice the 20 29 Rule 3 Let the Mind Follow the Body 32 Rule 4 Unlock Creativity . . . with Repetition 36 Rule 5 Replace Your Purpose (with an Objective) 40 Rule 6 Practice "Bright Spots" 44 Rule 7 Differentiate Drill from Scrimmage 48 Rule 8 Correct Instead of Critique 52 HOW TO PRACTICE 55 Rule 9 Analyze the Game 58 Rule 10 Isolate the Skill 62 Rule 11 Name It 66 Rule 12 Integrate the Skills 68 Rule 13 Make a Plan 72 Rule 14 Make Each Minute Matter 76 USING MODELING 83 Rule 15 Model and Describe 86 Rule 16 Call Your Shots 87 Rule 17 Make Models Believable 92 Rule 18 Try Supermodeling 95 Rule 19 Insist They "Walk This Way" 96 Rule 20 Model Skinny Parts 99 Rule 21 Model the Path 101 Rule 22 Get Ready for Your Close-up 104 FEEDBACK 107 Rule 23 Practice Using Feedback (Not Just Getting It) 109 Rule 24 Apply First, Then Reflect 114 Rule 25 Shorten the Feedback Loop 117 Rule 26 Use the Power of Positive 121 Rule 27 Limit Yourself 126 Rule 28 Make It an Everyday Thing 128 Rule 29 Describe the Solution (Not the Problem) 130 Rule 30 Lock It In 133 CULTURE OF PRACTICE 139 Rule 31 Normalize Error 143 Rule 32 Break Down the Barriers to Practice 148 Rule 33 Make It Fun to Practice 154 Rule 34 Everybody Does It 159 Rule 35 Leverage Peer-to-Peer Accountability 162 Rule 36 Hire for Practice 165 Rule 37 Praise the Work 169 POST-PRACTICE: MAKING NEW SKILLS STICK 173 Rule 38 Look for the Right Things 176 Rule 39 Coach During the Game (Don't Teach) 180 Rule 40 Keep Talking 183 Rule 41 Walk the Line (Between Support and Demand) 185 Rule 42 Measure Success 188 CONCLUSION: THE MONDAY MORNING TEST 193 Appendix A: Teaching Techniques from Teach Like a Champion 205 Appendix B: Sample Practice Activities 229 Notes 241 Acknowledgments 245 About the Authors 249 Summary of Rules 251 Index 255

About the Author

Doug Lemov is the author of the bestselling book, Teach Like a Champion . He was a managing director at Uncommon Schools and now directs their project on effective teaching practices. Erica Woolway is the chief academic officer for the Taxonomy of Effective Teaching Practices at Uncommon Schools. Katie Yezzi is the founding principal of Troy Prep Elementary School in New York.


"Learning to practice, this book vividly illustrates, takes time and effort, trial and error. It won't happen tomorrow. But even a small movement in the direction of more practice will reap benefits..." ( The Washington Post 's 'Class Struggle' blog, October 2012) " Practice Perfect is a valuable read for everyone who wants to help their employees grow and excel through practice." (, October 2012)

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