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Senior 2 English Language Arts: A Foundation for Implementation

Implementation Overview: Senior 2
Planning, Teaching, and Learning with Learning Outcomes - Part 4

Instructional Approaches

In planning instruction, teachers draw upon a repertoire of instructional approaches and methods, and use combinations of these in each lesson and unit. Instructional approaches may be categorized as

  • direct instruction
  • indirect instruction
  • experiential learning
  • independent study
  • interactive instruction

Most teachers draw from all of these categories to ensure variety in their classroom activities, to engage students with various intelligences and a range of learning approaches, and to achieve instructional goals.

The diagram found on p. Planning-12 of the Senior 2 English Language Arts: A Foundation for Implementation (1998) displays instructional approaches and suggests some examples of methods within each approach. Note that the approaches overlap.

In selecting instructional approaches and methods, teachers consider which combination will assist students in achieving the learning outcomes targeted for a particular lesson or unit. Teachers consider the advantages and limitations of the approaches and methods, as well as the interests, knowledge, skills and strategies, and attitudes of their students. Some of these elements are represented in the following chart.

Instructional Approaches: Roles, Purposes, and Methods

- Direct Instruction -

Roles

Purposes/Uses

Methods

Advantages/Limitations

  • Highly teacher-directed
  • Teacher ensures a degree of student involvement through didactic questioning
  • Providing information
  • Developing step-by-step skills and strategies
  • Introducing other approaches and methods
  • Teaching active listening and note making
Teachers:
  • Explicit teaching
  • Lesson overviews
  • Guest speakers
  • Instruction of strategic processes
  • Lecturing
  • Didactic questioning
  • Demonstrating and modelling prior to guided practice
  • Mini-lessons
  • Guides for reading, listening, and viewing
  • Effective in providing students with knowledge of steps of highly sequenced skills and strategies
  • Limited use in developing abilities, processes, and attitudes for critical thinking and interpersonal or group learning
  • Students may be passive rather than active learners

 

Instructional Approaches: Roles, Purposes, and Methods

- Indirect Instruction -

Roles

Purposes/Uses

Methods

Advantages/Limitations

  • Mainly student-centred
  • Role of teacher shifts to facilitator, supporter, resource person
  • Teacher monitors progress to determine when intervention or another approach is required
  • Activating student interest and curiosity
  • Developing creativity and interpersonal skills and strategies
  • Exploring diverse possibilities
  • Forming hypotheses and developing concepts
  • Solving problems
  • Drawing inferences
Students:
  • Observing
  • Investigating
  • Inquiring and researching
  • Jigsaw groups
  • Problem solving
  • Reading and viewing or meaning
  • Reflective discussion
  • Gallery walks
  • Concept mapping
  • Students learn effectively from active involvement
  • Allows for high degree of differentiation and pursuit of individual interests
  • Teacher requires excellent facilitation and organizational skills
  • Focused instruction of content and concepts may be difficult to integrate

 

Instructional Approaches: Roles, Purposes, and Methods

- Interactive Instruction -

Roles

Purposes/Uses

Methods

Advantages/Limitations

  • Student-centred
  • Teacher forms groups, teaches and guides small-group skills and strategies
  • Activating student interest and curiosity
  • Developing creativity and interpersonal skills and strategies
  • Exploring diverse possibilities
  • Forming hypotheses and developing concepts
  • Solving problems
  • Drawing inferences
Students:
  • Discussing
  • Sharing
  • Generating alternative ways of thinking and feeling
  • Debates
  • Role-playing
  • Panels
  • Brainstorming
  • Peer conferencing
  • Co-operative learning groups
  • Problem solving
  • Talking circles
  • Peer editing
  • Interviewing
  • Student motivation and learning increase through active involvement in groups
  • Teacher’s knowledge and skill in forming groups, instructing, and guiding group dynamics are important to the success of this approach
  • Effective in assisting students’ development of life skills in co-operation and collaboration

 

Instructional Approaches: Roles, Purposes, and Methods

- Experiential Learning -

Roles

Purposes/Uses

Methods

Advantages/Limitations

  • Student-centred
  • Teacher may wish to design the order and steps of the process
  • Focusing on processes of learning rather than products
  • Developing students’ knowledge and experience
  • Preparing students for direct instruction
Students:
  • Participating in activities
  • Field trips
  • Simulations
  • Primary research
  • Games
  • Focused imaging
  • Role-playing
  • Surveys
  • Sharing and observations and reflections
  • Reflecting critically on experiences
  • Developing hypotheses and generalizations
  • Testing hypotheses and generalization in new situation
  • Students understanding and retention increase
  • Hands-on learning may require additional resources and time

 

Instructional Approaches: Roles, Purposes, and Methods

- Independent Study -

Roles

Purposes/Uses

Methods

Advantages/Limitations

  • Student-centred
  • Teacher guides or supervises students’ independent study, teachers knowledge, skills and strategies that students require for independent learning and provides adequate practice
  • Accessing and developing student initiative
  • Developing student responsibility
  • Developing self-reliance and independence
Students:
  • Inquiry and research projects
  • Using a variety of approaches and methods
  • Computer-assisted instruction
  • Essays and reports
  • Study guides
  • Learning contracts
  • Homework
  • Learning centres
  • Students grow as independent, lifelong learners
  • Student maturity, knowledge, skills, and strategies are important to success
  • Student access to resources is essential
  • Approach may be used flexibly (it may be used with individual students while other students use other approaches)

Selecting Teaching and Learning Activities

Leslie decides to ask the class to select one news maker as an example for the whole class to explore together first. After instruction in and modelling of the strategies and processes involved in selecting and evaluating information using this example, Leslie will ask students to select their own news maker.

Students will use various information systems to collect information on a news maker of their choice. Through discussion and presentations, students will explore the values that determine the individuals selected for media coverage.

Leslie draws up a four-column unit overview, aware that these plans will be refined and revised as she collects assessment data, and learns how successful each instructional and learning activity is in meeting the learning outcomes.

News Makers: Unit Overview

Learning Outcomes
to be Assessed

Instructional Strategies

Assessment Tools
and Methods

Learning Materials
and Resources

3.2.2 Identify Sources

3.2.3 Evaluate Sources

3.2.4 Access Information

 

2.1.2 Comprehension
          Strategies

 

3.2.2, 3.2.3, 3.2.4

 

2.1.3 Textual Cues


2.1.2

 

 

 

3.3.2 Record Information

 

5.2.2 Relate Texts to

Culture

  • Information scavenging (3.2.4)*

 


  • Think-alouds (2.1.2):* Teacher modelling and peer practice
  • Students select articles
  • Graphic coding (3.2.5)*
  • Summarizing: Modelling and practice (3.2.5)*

 

  • Mini-lesson on paraphrasing and using sources
  • Small-group and whole-class discussion: Why do the media select certain individuals? What do these choices reveal about our society?
  • Simulated press conference: Students assume personality of chosen news maker.
  • Form for identifying, locating, and evaluating sources (3.2.2)*

 

  • Teacher observation of pairs in think-alouds
  • Peer conferences



  • Teacher observation

 

 

  • Notes submitted for assessment
  • Journal entry: personal response (1.1.1)*

 

 

 

  • Questions posed by class; answers by news makers
  • Teacher checklist
  • Exit slips (1.1.5)*
 

 

 

 

  • Articles on news maker selected as class example
  • Student-selected articles on news maker of choice

 

* This strategy is found with this specified learning outcome in the four-column section of this document.

In developing this unit overview, Leslie recognizes that students will need instruction in recording information (learning outcome 3.3.2).

The next step is designing the first lesson plan.

(To be continued)

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