Home Australia The return of the divisive teaching “fad” in Australian classrooms today is criticized for sending children “back in time” – but experts say it will make them smarter

The return of the divisive teaching “fad” in Australian classrooms today is criticized for sending children “back in time” – but experts say it will make them smarter

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Dr Jenny Donavan, chief executive of the Australian Education Research Association, has explained why she is a supporter of the explicit teaching model.

Students in New South Wales will today enter a new era of learning following the implementation of the “explicit” teaching model across the state.

The model calls for teachers to show students “exactly how to do something step by step” and have them practice over and over again until they get it right, rather than letting them “find their own way.”

And, according to Dr Jenny Donavan, chief executive of the Australian Education Research Association, it is the best way to ensure students do not leave their studies with critical gaps in knowledge.

The former teacher says it also works “for everyone”, unlike the recently overthrown “research” method, in which children from more privileged backgrounds continue to outrank and outperform their peers.

“The first thing explicit teaching does is verify what students already know, then build on that foundation so that no one is left behind,” he said.

It does not depend on parents to fill the gaps in the home, which often sets up children from poorer or less educated areas to failure.

Although it is used in classrooms in countries known for their academic success, such as Singapore, the method is not well received by everyone.

In fact, some teachers have rolled their eyes and declared it another educational “fad,” while progressive parents worry that schools are “going backwards.”.

Dr Jenny Donavan, chief executive of the Australian Education Research Association, has explained why she is a supporter of the explicit teaching model.

What is explicit teaching?

Explicit teaching involves teachers clearly showing students what to do and how to do it, rather than students discovering that information on their own.

Explicit teaching links to why students learn something, how it connects to what they know, what they are expected to do, and what success looks like.

They are then given the opportunity to check their understanding, receive feedback and put it all together.

Explicit teaching is effective when learning is new or complex because it responds to how the brain processes, stores, and retrieves information.

It also supports students of all ages and backgrounds and helps drive learning and engagement.

The evidence base on explicit teaching is enormous. It is not new, it is clear and the results speak for themselves.

Students who experience explicit teaching in Year 7 are on average 4 months ahead in their learning in Year 9.

Schools identify and use a variety of tools and data to understand the impact of their teaching practices so they can continually build and strengthen student learning experiences.

Source: New South Wales Department of Education

“Nothing is ‘new’ in the education system, everything has simply been renamed,” said one teacher, angry at the news coming in about explicit teaching.

He added that teachers are often forced to study subjects they are not trained in, due to shortages, and have “classes of 30” to serve each child with less than 90 seconds of individual time per 50-minute lesson. .

“Explicit instruction is a big challenge in mixed-ability classes,” he roared.

According to a spokesperson for the New South Wales Department of Education, explicit teaching has had a place in the classroom for years, but teachers simply have not been told to focus on it as a central method.

“It is already used regularly in most public primary and secondary schools in NSW, in many different subjects,” they told FEMAIL ahead of the official launch.

‘Explicit teaching does not discriminate. So if you are a student who is struggling or accelerating beyond your class level, explicit teaching will help you reach your potential.’

Many on social media have been busy debating the pros and cons of the method.

Many claimed that explicit teaching was just an exaggerated version of “old school” learning, which was slowly replaced by research-based study 30 years ago.

“Here we go, the same merry-go-round us teachers are supposed to smile and agree when most of the older people have been doing this in the classroom since the beginning,” one person, supposedly a teacher, stated online.

The teachers are

Teachers were “taught” how to use the new method in school during the pupils’ free day at the beginning of the second term.

While another said: ‘This was the method that was applied previously, before standards started to fall. It was taught universally in teacher training schools. Gradually, from the mid-1960s, a new American trend was applied: child-centered immersion and osmosis as the best teaching method. “Now we are where that method would always take us.”

But Dr Donavan told WhatsNew2Day Australia that people who compare the teaching method to those practiced in the past miss the point, especially those who claim older teachers were taught explicit teaching at university.

‘People describe it as old-fashioned. “When I went to university to study teaching in the ’80s, I was taught that children are natural learners, which wasn’t very helpful,” he said.

In fact, Dr. Donavan stated that explicit teaching will have a huge impact on learning outcomes as well as classroom behavior.

They will be taught step by step what is expected and how to do it and will follow it with a lot of practice.

Statewide implementation means the method will be more effective as teachers will have a consistent approach to teaching and classroom management.

Dr. Donavan says students will not fall through the cracks with explicit teaching because “there are no loopholes.”

However, he admits it will take time to see results reflected in test scores.

This is because teachers need to practice what they have been taught about the teaching method they did yesterday, on the students’ day off.

Parents have joined the furor by claiming that “good teachers” are the answer to classroom problems and poor results, although Dr Donavan and departments criticized that claim as simplistic.

Dr Donavan said most NSW teachers are excellent educators; they just need systems in place to help.

‘Our education system should help our children become analytical and curious lifelong learners. Explicit teaching followed immediately by explicit testing may produce higher scores in the short term, but it is useless in providing the skills and dispositions necessary to prepare children for life in the real world,’ argued one parent.

But Dr Donavan disagreed, telling FEMAIL that the strong knowledge base and interactive, hands-on approach of explicit teaching not only engages children but gives them a solid foundation on which to build in their own time. , as problems arise in everyday life.

“You can’t build knowledge on nothing, but when you are presented with something new you can take advantage of that information to generate your own ideas,” he said.

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