Considered as the default, or most popular teaching style, direct instruction is teacher directed. The instructor stands in front of the classroom to present the information, while also giving guided instructions to the students. 

There are six steps that occur in direct instruction:

  1. Introduction/Review: This is essentially opening up the lesson to refresh students and start to get them engaged by activating previous knowledge. Lesson objectives can also be presented so students can understand what is expected from them.
  2. Presenting the New Material: Through either a lecture or demonstration,the teacher facilitates instructions so students can begin learning the new material. Teachers may use a scaffolding approach, as lessons should be organized step by step.
  3. Guided Practice: The teacher coordinates an activity/assignment for students to practice the new concept that they have learned. 
  4. Feedback/Correctives:The teacher should give feedback/correctives during the guided practice process before moving onto the next step (independent practice). This is to ensure the students really understand the new information they have just learned. This can look like reteaching, encouragement, asking new questions or providing hints. 
  5. Independent Practice: At this step, students are ready to apply the new information they have just learned, independently. Through repetition in the practice, students are able to integrate the new information/skills with their prior knowledge. There are two stages students go through in independent practice. The first is unitization, which is where they are first integrating the new information and applying it to different problems/situations. The second is automaticity, where students fully understand the concept and are quick and confident to solve problems.
  6. Evaluation/Review: This is the final check-in to ensure students are on the right track to move on to the next step that expands their knowledge on the current concept. This will most likely look like a formative assessment. 

The compatibility of our topic of inclusivity in the general classroom and direct instruction is fairly low. As direct instruction is structured with strict lesson plans, there is no room for adaptability or personalization which are both essential for inclusion. Although direct instruction may be effective for some of the more independent students, there is the elimination of discussions, workshops, case studies etc. which some students need in order to be engaged and process the information. 


Renard, L. (2019, March 28). Direct instruction – A practical guide to effective teaching. BookWidgets Blog.