Explicit Instruction Website

After reading my earlier blog post on The Need for Explicit Vocabulary Instruction, my new friend, Erin, from the University of Oregon Center on Teaching and Learning sent me a link to Anita Archer and Charles Hughes’ website www.explicitinstruction.org.  She thought I’d enjoy the vidoes on the website and she was absolutely right!  Its one thing to read about an instructional strategy, but it’s another to see it in action–and demonstrated by a master teacher.

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If you’ve been following my blog for awhile, you may know that vocabulary instruction is one of my favorite topics.  On the Explicit Instruction website there are are two videos of Dr. Archer demonstrating a vocabulary lesson (one for kindergarten and the other for second grade).  They are both excellent.  My favorite video, however, is the Active Participation video where she engages second grade students in a lesson.

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The goal of the video is to demonstrate strategies to gain attention and engage students in learning.   Earlier this week I had a conversation with one of my colleagues about instructional delivery and we talked about pacing.  This video is an excellent example of how to deliver instruction at an appropriate pace which increases engagement and maximizes learning.

Just below the video is a written description outlining the purpose of the demonstration as well as the instructional strategies that were used during the lesson.  For each strategy, a description of the strategy, when to use it and the exact procedures for implementing the strategy are provided.

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The videos are super helpful.  They aren’t too long– the active participation video is less that 7 minutes.  So, take a few minutes and watch Dr. Archer’s lessons.  The way in which we deliver our instruction has a direct impact on student learning.

I just ordered the book Explicit Instruction: Effective and Efficient Teaching.  It’s was suppose to be on my summer reading list, but I just couldn’t wait.  I’m already through chapter 2 and am looking forward to reading the chapter on vocabulary instruction.  The book is pretty heavy with research (I love that!), but it also has tons of examples of the strategies in action.

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