Direct teaching/instruction is a step-by-step, lesson-by-lesson approach to teaching which is scripted and follows a pre-determined skill acquisition sequence. The aim of using direct teaching/instruction is to take local variation and teacher/child idiosyncrasy out of instruction (Luke, 2014) and for children to learn through imitation. It is also used as a general term for the teaching of skills by telling or demonstrating. It is a common approach used for the teaching of handwriting, as well as phonics, letters and numerals.
If utilised effectively, possible characteristics may include: explicit and scaffolded.
Direct teaching/instruction unpacked
- control content, activities and lesson pacing
- use pre-planned sequences of content and activities (fixed, linear and incremental)
- use behaviouristic learning principles (getting children's attention, reinforcing correct responses, providing corrective feedback, practising correct responses)
- place children in ability/achievement groups.
- follow and participate in structured class routines
- follow a series of instructions
- acquire content or skills through rote learning, drill and repetition
- practise content or skills using worksheets and workbooks
- produce a desired action/behaviour/product.
approaches of age-appropriate pedagogies in action: direct teaching/instruction to further explore the approach.