Instructional Strategies: Hands-On, Interactive, Expository & Collaborative

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  • 0:22 Expository Instruction
  • 1:20 Interactive Instruction
  • 2:24 Hands-On Instruction
  • 3:30 Collaborative Instruction
  • 4:25 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Erin Long-Crowell

Erin has an M.Ed in adult education and a BS in psychology and a BS in management systems.

In this lesson, we will use the fictional Academy of Magic to illustrate four types of instructional strategies that teachers use in the classroom: expository instruction, interactive instruction, hands-on instruction and collaborative instruction.

Expository Instruction

Imagine you're a student at the Academy of Magic. It's a Tuesday, so your schedule includes the following classes: magical history, the study of non-magical people and practical anti-dark magic. You also have kettleball practice tonight.

A teacher giving a lecture to the class is using expository instruction.
Expository Instruction Example

After a hearty breakfast, you head to magical history. Your teacher is Professor Spectre, a very old man who always stands at the front of the classroom and drones on and on. His preferred teaching method is expository instruction, which could be defined as the use of an expert to explain a concept or give information to the student. Expository instruction involves one-way communication - that is, communication from the teacher or expert to the student. When Professor Spectre is lecturing, he is considered the 'expert;' however, he sometimes uses other experts, such as textbook authors, and requires you to read the information. In the real world, a teacher using expository instruction might give a presentation, make you read textbooks or even watch a video; in any scenario, you are receiving information from an expert.

Interactive Instruction

Let's get back to your day. After finishing magical history, you move on to your next class: the study of non-magical people. Your teacher is Professor Pickles, and she likes for everyone to sit in a circle in her classroom. Professor Pickles prefers to use interactive instruction, which is the use of social interaction to enhance students' learning. Interactive instruction involves two-way communication - that is, communication between the teacher and student or between students. During each class period, Professor Pickles facilitates group discussion and encourages you to share examples from your own experiences to illustrate that day's topic. She is also a teacher that encourages you to ask a lot of questions. In the real world, a teacher using interactive instruction would ensure you have the opportunity to learn from and interact with other people. It could be something as simple as a question-and-answer session during class, or it might be in the form of a debate or one-on-one tutoring.

Hands-On Instruction

Developing a map of a real community is an authentic activity.
Authentic Activity

The bell rings and you take a long break to eat lunch with your friends before you head to practical anti-dark magic. Your teacher for this class is Professor Orb, and his preferred teaching method is hands-on instruction. Hands-on instruction is the use of physical assignments or activities that engage the students in learning. Professor Orb spends the beginning of class describing a dark creature and how to defeat it, then asks you to try defeating it yourself. Professor Orb wants you to be able to defend yourself outside of the Academy of Magic, so he always gives you authentic activities, which are activities similar to those students would encounter in the outside world. In the real world, a teacher using hands-on instruction has you do something rather than just hearing or reading about it. It may be a worksheet for you to fill out, or it might be something more active, like constructing a map of the local community. Constructing a map of the local community is also a good example of an authentic activity because it is something that mimics the world outside of school.

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