Whatever happened to direct instruction?


Here is an interesting polemical article by Richard Ullman which asks the same question about school education and all the fashionable learner-centred approaches. He says: “many of these strategies tend to put the critical-thinking-and-creativity cart before the fundamental content-and-skill-acquisition horse” and then goes on to give an example of someone learning how to play a musical instrument: you can’t show your creativity before you have developed the basic skill of playing. I’d take it with a grain of salt, but if you feel that sometimes the pendulum swings too far and learners do not get enough knowledge and guidance, this might be the explanation.

7 thoughts on “Whatever happened to direct instruction?

  1. Students who are capable of being independent learners benefit from these progressive strategies. These students bring contexts, interests, and experiences into conversations that would easily be left out in a traditional teacher-centered learning environment. That said, I agree that these methods are used too haphazardly and inappropriately in consideration of student abilities, proficiency, and needs. They should be one among many strategies available to teachers, not the one and only one, mandated universally in the teacher evaluation rubric.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Pingback: Knowledge before skill? | Kate's Crate

  3. Pingback: Creative or doing the real work | Kate's Crate

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