The Clarifying Routine

"Clarifying Routine Manual cover picture"

The Clarifying Routine is used to focus on a topic and then explore related details and their importance to the critical ideas and concepts. Using this routine, teachers can help students master the meaning of targeted words and phrases.

Studies in upper-elementary and middle-school general education classes composed of highly diverse student populations, including students with learning disabilities and those for whom English is a second language, have shown that students benefit from teacher use of the routine. When teachers used the Clarifying Routine, high socioeconomic level sixth-graders improved their number of correct answers by an average of 14 percentage points, middle socioeconomic level fourth- and fifth-graders by an average of 30 percentage points, and low socioeconomic level fourth- and fifth-graders by an average of 20 percentage points. In addition, teachers reported higher levels of student interaction during classroom instruction.


This product is published by Edge Enterprises, Inc.  Professional development is recommended, see the SIM Event page for sessions.


Author(s): Edwin S. Ellis

Publication Info: Edge Enterprises, Inc.


The Clarifying Routine Research (.pdf)


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