No Series: Catch and Release: Encourage Independence

Catch and Release: Encourage Independence

Lesson Objective: Clarify concepts and share learning
All Grades / All Subjects / Strategies


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Discussion and Supporting Materials

Thought starters

  1. How can this strategy be applied to all subject areas?
  2. Why are both "catching" and "releasing" important?
  3. How does Ms. Noonan strike a balance between direct teaching and student exploration?


  • Private message to Ashley Estrada
Great video! It is always good to start encouraging independence to children at young ages.
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  • Private message to Milton L Araujo
In math it can be used as well. Loved it
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  • Private message to Gloria Ingram
I used this strategy for language when they were in groups finding the main idea. I noticed they were having a problem, so I called them back to talk about the assignment. That led to using the graphic map to walk them through the process. When it appeared that they understood a little better, I sent them back to their groups with another passage and a graphic organizer.
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  • Private message to Lisa Reiner
Often times in small groups, I have to kind of stop their work to acknowledge and discuss things I'm noticing as I walk around that they need help on. Catching them seems easy here, tho--how do you get the children to simultaneously stop talking and look at you without losing instructional time? Clapping my hands often helps. Just wondering.
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  • Private message to sandra durazzo
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  • c0403_006002
    Catch and Release
    Luna Productions
    Transcript of final program
    Teacher: Maddie Noonan

    Teacher: All right 5th graders

    So catch

    Catch and Release
    Luna Productions
    Transcript of final program
    Teacher: Maddie Noonan

    Teacher: All right 5th graders

    So catch and release is when we start as a whole group

    Teacher: You are going to be working in your table groups

    And then students go into their table teams and work

    Teacher: So what’s your first step going to be?

    And the catch is when we come back together

    Teacher: I want everyone to take a break from what they’re doing and put their eyes over here

    Highlight some noticings

    Teacher: A couple things I want to share. A lot of us are losing what the problem is actually asking us. I’m noticing everyone working so hard on their cubes. What do you need to use the cube for? Nialie?

    Student: Well we’re going to build it and then cut the edges to undo it.

    Teacher: Excellent. And why. You’re looking for what as you cut Germaine?

    Student? Because we’re trying to solve what’s the least number of cuts that we can do in the sides to make it a flat.

    Teacher: And then what do you with that information, do you just wave your cube around?

    Student: You write it and then you write a note to a friend telling them why your answer is right and if it can work with any kind of cube.

    Teacher: Thank you.

    And the release is when we go back to work

    Teacher: So I just want to remind you that if you’re spending a lot of time on your cube, I see some multi colored cubes out there, you are potentially getting away from what this is asking you. So don’t let this basket of supplies distract you, capiche?

    Student: Capiche.

    Teacher: Back to work.

    And then we release again by going back to work in our table groups with the new lens of the noticings we’ve discussed.

    Teacher: So now that you feel clear on that can you explain to your teammates what you’re trying to find here?

    ? end of transcript

School Details

Think College Now School
2825 International Boulevard
Oakland CA 94601
Population: 306

Data Provided By:



Madeline Noonan
English Language Arts Math Social Studies / 5 / Teacher


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