Sunday, January 22, 2012

Task Analysis Part One

You know that awful saying "Those who can do and Those who can't teach!" It is really so awful and when I was a teacher I was would get so angry when someone said that to me. Actually I once told someone that they should remember that when their child sat in my classroom!! So I decided to change it around...

"Those you can do, Those who can't need a task analysis." Don't we all. When you purchase furniture, inside you will find a (good and sometimes not so good) task analysis of all you need to do to put it together. It starts with all the materials required, from the smallest nut to the largest piece. And the instructions go step by small step all the way to how the final product should look. If you were to buy another piece of furniture in the same line, the manufacture, does not assume you already know how to put it together, they again give you a step by step guide on how to put it together. So why is it that when we sits down to teach a skill to a child, we think we can just jump in without a well written plan. From instruction to materials.

Can you really teach anything without a well written, thought out plan?
How much of the skill needs to be explained/ broken down?
How much should you expect the learner to know? What skills need to pre-taught?
Do you need the same plan for every learner?
What are your expectations of the learner?
How will you know if the skills are mastered? And generalized?
Why are we teaching this skill? When and How should the learner use the new skill?

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