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Small Changes, Big Impact

Ten Strategies to Promote Student Efficacy and Lifelong Learning

By: Anthony R. Reibel, Matt Thede

Designed as a guide to school reform, this resource outlines a series of ten small-scale changes powerful enough to make a lasting impact. Promote K–12 student growth through research-based instructional strategies, performance-based assessments, and social-emotional learning (SEL).

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A pocket guide to school reform through research-based instructional strategies

Discover a pathway to improvement that is simple and field tested. Designed as a practical guide to school reform, this resource outlines a series of ten small-scale changes powerful enough to make a lasting impact in schools and districts. Within each chapter, you will find easy-to-implement strategies for strengthening culture, building relationships, and promoting student growth at every K–12 grade level.

  • Understand how to redefine student success as efficacy and ownership of learning.
  • Gain research-based instructional strategies and teaching methods for creating student-centered mission statements that promote student success, self-reliance, and social-emotional learning (SEL).
  • Explore how to use performance-based assessments as a process for learning.
  • Examine the qualities of growth-based feedback to promote a future pathway for achievement.
  • Obtain tools for developing dynamic reporting structures that communicate stories of learning and promote self-evaluation.

Related Topics

InstructionSchool Improvement


Additional Information

Product Code: BKF921

ISBN: 9781949539295

Published By: Solution Tree

Page Count: 160

“What is student success? In this powerful and practical book, Small Changes, Big Impact, Anthony Reibel and Matt Thede identify student success, not in the traditional sense of academic achievement, but as student self-efficacy and agency. They identify ten small changes schools can make to impact culture, learning, and relationships in order to foster self-efficacy and agency. Ideally, schools would implement all ten of these changes over a period of time, but what makes this book so valuable is that schools could choose to implement only one or two of these changes and still see very positive results. This book is a must-read for teachers and administrators who want to prepare students to be reflective, independent, lifelong learners so they are successful in whatever they choose to do in school and beyond.”

Ken O’Connor, educational consultant and author

Small Changes, Big Impact is one of the few books that lives up to its title. Authors Anthony Reibel and Matt Thede assert that the smallest changes to already-existing practices and processes can bring about monumental improvements to culture, learning, and relationships. They detail ten ways teachers can put students at the center of the educational experience. By redefining student success around efficacy, this book offers a substantive examination of how student agency can thrive in any classroom.”

Tom Schimmer, education author, speaker, and consultant

Small Changes, Big Impact details ten changes educators can implement to create significant school improvement. Whether it is embracing evidence-based grading practices or creating a student-centered mission and culture, this book helps schools take immediate action to increase student efficacy. The authors detail practical strategies for educators to reach organizational goals by increasing student voice and agency.”

Nathan Wear, associate superintendent and chief academic officer, Linn-Marr CSD, Iowa

“In Small Changes, Big Impact, Anthony Reibel and Matt Thede have crafted a thorough, highly defensible, and broadly applicable prescription for transformative change in schools. This is a compelling, well-researched guide grounded in high-quality practices employed at the authors’ respective schools. At the core of their work is the shifting of our collective lens to a redefined definition of success focused on student efficacy, positive relationships, growth-based assessment and, ultimately, transferability of skills to lifelong learning. Progressive thinkers in education have been endorsing these concepts for years, and my enthusiasm for this book stems from so much important information and practical advice, articulated so well, in so few pages. I can’t wait to get this ‘buffet of small changes with a big impact’ into the hands of my students.”

Randal Peters, associate professor of education leadership, Drake University School of Education

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