The University of Kansas Center for Research on Learning developed the Strategic Instruction Model (SIM). For over thirty years, they have conducted research designed to develop ways to help students meet the demands of life, not just in school but after they leave school as well. Their overriding goal has been to develop an integrated model to address many of the needs of diverse learners. Out of this effort, SIM has evolved. In essence, SIM is about promoting effective teaching and learning of critical content in schools. SIM strives to help teachers make decisions about what is of greatest importance, what we can teach students to help them to learn, and how to teach them well. There are two components in SIM: Learning Strategies and Content Enhancement Routines.
SIM Learning Strategies
SIM encompasses more than 30 specific Learning Strategies that can help students overcome specific learning difficulties that impede literacy, from identifying words in a text to completing assignments on time to writing complete essays.
Students use SIM Learning Strategies--an approach to learning and using information--to help them understand information and solve problems. Students who do not know or use good learning strategies often learn passively and ultimately fail in school. SIM Learning Strategy instruction focuses on making students active learners.
SIM Content Enhancement Routines
The Content Enhancement instructional method uses powerful teaching devices to organize and present curriculum content in an understandable and easy-to-learn manner. Teachers identify content that they deem to be most critical and teach it using a powerfully designed teaching routine that actively engages students with the content. Teachers carry out instruction in partnership with students in a way that maintains the integrity of the content while meeting both group and individual needs.
All of the routines promote direct, explicit instruction. This type of instruction helps students who are struggling, but it also facilitates problem-solving and critical-thinking skills for students who are doing well in class.