Facilitating Gradual Release

Element 10A.2: Uses the Gradual Release of Responsibility Model: Modeling, guided practice, collaborative practice, independent application/transfer

Why is this important?

The Gradual Release Model is actually a set of key instructional "moves" that are important when teaching a new process or skill and is associated with high gains in student achievement. This is the model that should be used when teaching high impact strategies as well. Make sure not to skip the steps in between modeling and independent practice/transfer.

You might want to start here:

  • 13 minute video of Doug Fisher describing the components [I do, we do, you do together, you do alone] of the Gradual Release Model.

See it in action:

  • ACPS video example of Gradual Release in a high school English class. Example and discussion by Sarah Brown Wessling. Focus on improving practice, helping students deepen thinking skills and developing the learning process.


  • A graphic from the Wisconsin Media Lab to help clarify what Gradual Release looks like and sounds like with clearly delineated roles for both teacher and student for each component.
  • Better Lesson provides a variety of professional development options through personalized coaching.

After exploring this high impact strategy:

1. What are your most important takeaways?

2. In what ways do you anticipate this will impact or shift your practice?

3. What questions do you have at this point?