Let’s face it. Sometimes direct instruction is not only a great way to teach students concepts, it is necessary. Even the most learner-centered educators know that part of our job is to develop in students the expertise that we already possess. Direct instruction often gets equated with the lecture, an often over-used teaching strategy, but there are plenty of ways to convey information directly in engaging ways that students can return to over and over as needed.
This explains the popularity of the flipped classroom model for learning in which the teacher gives students resources that take the form of direct instruction that they can explore outside of the classroom, leaving the time during class for more learner-centered activities, application and extension, and teacher-student collaboration. The advantages of flipped learning include more time in class for higher-order thinking activities, the development of a library of resources to which students can return as needed, and a more opportunities to differentiate for students as they learn.
Even beyond the flipped classroom, there are lots of reasons to find new and compelling ways to convey important information for learning. Teachers all across the globe are harnessing new technologies to create learning objects that inform such as podcasts, videos, online games and web-based resources. If you have ever created a Thinglink, a Prezi, or a Tellagami video to teach a concept, you are among these teachers.
One of the most popular (and useful) forms of this type of instruction is video. YouTube is full of video tutorials. The Khan Academy was built on the notion that this type of instruction is powerful and useful. And there are dozens of great web tools that enable educators with very little video-editing experience to be up and running quickly. One of my favorite video-creation tools recently has been Moovly, a great time-line editor that allows me to make slick-looking videos with ease.
What is Moovly?
Check out this introduction video to learn more: