Now that you’ve answered crucial questions about your instruction, you will begin to design the actual lesson.

Task Analysis

Deconstruct your lesson in order to construct it in the best way possible.

  1. Look at your statement of purpose/main objective. Always keep it in mind, especially if things get confusing or you feel that the lesson/unit is getting too large or out of focus.
  2. Write down 2-5 abilities/skills/behaviors that your students must have in order to be successful with your instruction. These are what as known as entry or entry-level behaviors. You want the instruction to be at the appropriate level. If it is too simple or too difficult, then the instruction will be a waste of resources. Some possible examples of entry behaviors could include:
    1. access to a computer and the Internet
    2. basic Internet navigational skills
    3. adult-level fine motor skills
    4. the ability to lift 50 lbs without injury to themselves or others
    5. knowing how to use callbacks in Javascript
  3. Decide on a sequence for your instruction. Write it down.
  4. Break your task down into smaller tasks and sub tasks. Write it down. A possible example for the first two steps of making Challah bread (this would probably be 6-7 tasks with many sub-tasks):
    1. Mix the dry ingredients in a bowl
      1. Get out a large bowl
      2. Measure out and add bread flour to the bowl
      3. Measure out and add yeast to the bowl
      4. Measure out and add sugar to the bowl
    2. Mix the wet ingredients in a separate bowl
      1. Get out a medium-sized microwave-save bowl
      2. Measure out and add milk to the bowl
      3. Measure out and add butter to the bowl
      4. Measure out and add honey to the bowl

Exercise 5: Task Analysis (Google Drawings)

Task Analysis Template-2

Create a diagram of your steps. If you are unfamiliar with Google Drawings and don’t want to experience the sheer joy of figuring out a simple piece of software from scratch (maybe you have a horrible deadline to meet, there are all kinds of reasons…), then check out this video made by Karl Vogt, an 8th grade teacher in California.

This is one of the best apps I’ve seen for quickly making a high quality diagram, and it’s free! However, please feel free to use another program.



Learner Analysis

In which you look at your answers to Exercise #4 and write a tidy little summative paragraph about the characteristics of the people you are creating instruction for and how their characteristics will fair against the steps in your Task Analysis diagram.

Exercise 6: Learner Analysis