Direct Teaching Information
December 25, 2012
"Tell them what you're going
to say, say it, and then tell them what you said."
Probably as much as any other
"instructional method," direct teaching, also known as direct instruction, is
both misunderstood, but at the same time can be a powerful teaching tool in the
classroom. For new teachers, it provides an anchor, a proven technique and focus that can
provide a measure of stability in those first hectic months
of teaching. The name most associated with direct teaching is Madeline Hunter.
Direct teaching is also associated with Clinical Teaching, Target Teaching, and
Instructional Theory into Practice (TIP). To be sure, there are many who dismiss
direct teaching as an ineffective model, but one must question such assertions
with a deeper question: "Ineffective compared to what?"
Direct teaching is a
systematic instructional method that first and foremost requires the teacher to
have a command of the subject matter at as close to a mastery level as
possible. This means that whether subject matter is at the elementary level,
middle school level, high school level, college level or adult education level,
that the teacher thoroughly "understand" the content. Such understanding
presupposes that the teacher "knows" more than the facts that describe the
content. It also means that the teacher understands the structure of the
content. In short, it means that the teacher understands each item of the
content in more than one way. The main purpose of direct teaching is to provide
information within a structure that enables all students to attain the stated
objectives at a level of mastery. Inferences may be made at this point that
direct teaching is least attractive to those teachers who themselves lack
mastery of the content. Can teachers be effective without using direct teaching?
Of course. In fact, many, if not most successful instructional episodes occupy a
continuum of teaching methods from direct teaching to cooperative learning and
individual student projects.
Direct teaching or direct
instruction is a systematic way of planning, communicating, and delivering in
the classroom. One does not become proficient at this, or any skill without
practice and relevant feedback. Direct teaching is probably best for teaching
skills, not understandings, and so, the teacher must practice these skills
himself as perfectly as possible.
The following sites provide
insight into Madeline Hunter's direct teaching model and ideas. The purpose is
to provide information that can help you sharpen your skills and help you
understand this sometimes maligned approach that can be a valuable part of your
instructional repertoire. What follows is serious information.
Elements of Effective Instruction
The Madeline Hunter Model explained.
Direct Teaching of Thinking Good information from
the University of Akron.
Practical Classroom and Direct Teaching Strategies From
Education consultants of the Midwest, a nicely described page on
of Sunderland (UK) This page is the result of a student project that
involves direct teaching. Go there to get some interesting ideas. A nicely done page.
Teachers Talking Teaching styles for active learning from