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Gagne's Nine Events of Instruction

Using Gagne's Nine Events to Create Lesson Plans


Robert Gagne created a list of nine events of instruction that need to occur to help increase student learning. This list looks at these nine events and how you can implement them in your lesson plans.

1. Gain Attention

The first step in presenting new material is to gain the student's attention. This can be done in a number of ways. The simplest way is to give students a good through problem or situation for them to think about that leads into what you wish to teach. You should also have students interact by asking questions and presenting their thoughts to the class. The point of this step is to ground the lesson in the student's reality and have them involved from the beginning.

2. Describe the Goal

Many times teachers jump right into a lesson without explaining to the students the goal of the lesson. You should get the students involved in their own learning by providing them with the objectives for what they will be learning. In this way, students will be able to judge if they are learning what it is you expect them to from the lesson.

3. Stimulate Recall of Prior Knowledge

By accessing prior knowledge and reminding students what they have already learned that is relevant to the lesson, this helps show how the knowledge is interconnected while providing them with a scaffold or framework for learning.

4. Present the Material to be Learned

Based on your goal for the lesson, provide students with the actual material to be learned. This is the bulk of what most teachers do on a day-to-day basis. However, by adding in the other steps, students have a much greater chance to remember and recall the information being taught. Remember to chunk information appropriately and integrate images, sounds, etc. as you can to enhance the information, hitting additional learning modalities.

5. Provide Guidance for Learning

Now that you have presented the information, guide students in their own learning of the material. For example, if you are teaching students how to tell time, in step four you present a clock and explain the different hands and what each represents with an overview of how to tell the current time. However, with this step, you would work as a class, teaching the students how to tell time as you change the hands on a paper clock.

6. Elicit Performance "Practice"

At this point, you need to provide students with the opportunity to interact with what they have learned. To continue with the previous example of telling time, at this point you would pass out individual paper clocks and have the students practice picking time flashcards and moving the hands to show the correct time while you walk around the room checking student progress.

7. Provide Informative Feedback

In the previous step, you had students interact in some way with what they have learned. In the telling time example, they practised telling time on their own with paper clocks. As you circulate around the class, it is important that you give specific and informative feedback. If you notice a child switching the hour and minute hand, then you should point this out and practice once with them before moving on.

8. Assess Performance

At this step, you assess whether the students have learned the objectives you set forth at the beginning of the lesson. You might have the students complete a project, take a quiz, or other independent work showing the knowledge they have learned. You then use this information to provide the student with feedback. In many cases, this is where you assign students their grade for the lesson.

9. Enhance Retention and Transfer

After you have completed your lesson and assessment, you can enhance retention and transfer of information by helping them see the information you learned in practice. In some cases, you can make connections to the larger world by showing deeper connections with real life.
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