Take it back

Filling the pail

I meet a lot of new teachers from a range of Australian universities. When I talk to them, they are full of enthusiasm for inquiry learning, project-based learning and other progressive teaching methods. When I ask them about explicit teaching, they look at me strangely and sometimes I have to clarify what I mean. I ask if explicit instruction was taught on their teacher education courses. They usually suggest that it has been mentioned but in a negative light. New teachers understand that this is not the way they are meant to teach.

This situation is quite extraordinary. It is the equivalent of medical students being taught to be sceptical of immunisation. After all, the evidence for the effectiveness of explicit teaching has been around since at least the 1970s.

Whereas new teachers bear the brunt of training in inadequate and impractical teaching methods, the perhaps even more unjust…

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