Instructional strategies are teaching methods that help students learn and understand concepts. Some instructional strategies are more effective than others, and educators need to choose the ones that will be most beneficial to their students.
Strategy Instruction: Explain, Name, Model
The best strategy instruction helps all learners understand the steps involved in learning and how to use those steps. This is especially important for students who learn and think differently. It is also helpful for students who struggle with attention or reading and writing skills, because it can help them master important tasks by teaching them the step-by-step process.
1. Establish Goals for the Strategy (domain)
It is essential to classify your instructional goals into specific domains – verbal information, intellectual skills, psychomotor skills, and attitudes – so you can determine which strategies will be most effective. You can use a tool such as Bloom’s Taxonomy to do this.
2. Connect the Strategy to a Class Activity or Assignment
When teaching a strategy, it’s essential to give students a clear reason for using it. This could be a real-world assignment, a test, or some other task. This makes it easier to help students understand the value of the strategy and make it part of their learning.
3. Practice the Strategy Often
Whenever possible, try to use the same strategy in different ways. For example, if you’re teaching a lesson about mnemonics, give students multiple opportunities to memorize the concept with mnemonics that they create themselves. If they are still having difficulty, reteach the strategy and make sure they get some corrective feedback.
4. Support the Strategy After You Teach It
It’s crucial to plan for the strategy to be used consistently by all of your students. This includes a strong foundation of explicit strategy instruction, modeling the strategy in the correct sequence, providing quick feedback on their use of the strategy, and helping them reflect on and improve their performance.
5. Build the Strategy Over Time
Once you’ve taught a strategy, it’s important to plan to reteach it and remodel it over time. This will give students a chance to continue practicing it, build a deep understanding of the strategy, and become more fluent in using it.
6. Experiential Learning – Student-Centered Inquiry
This is a teaching strategy that focuses on the students’ role in the learning process. It involves students interacting with the material or concept by exploring it, making sense of it, sharing their ideas and questions, and asking more questions.
In addition, teachers can also use experiential learning techniques such as field trips, simulations, experiments, games, role-playing and model building to promote the development of problem-solving and critical thinking skills.
7. Inductive Approach – This strategy is a popular way to teach new concepts and is especially useful for students who like to learn by example. They may enjoy presenting the general rule and then being asked to apply it to solving specific examples.
However, this strategy can be challenging for students who prefer a more direct and instructor-directed approach to learning. Therefore, it is recommended that instructors only use this strategy in situations where it will provide students with additional challenge and enhance their overall learning.