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Pedagogy and teaching have evolved dramatically in the last few decades. Gone are the days when students had to sit passively and just listen (or, better said, space out) while their teacher gave long lectures. New teaching methods have been integrated into physical and virtual classrooms, significantly improving the learning experience and knowledge retention.
So, what are these new approaches to teaching? Whether you’re an elementary or higher education teacher or an online instructor, you need to familiarize yourself with these modern, advanced teaching methods to deliver effective instruction and keep your learners engaged.
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Modern Teaching Methods All Educators Should Know
The following teaching methodologies will transform your classroom. Integrate as many as possible to create transformative learning experiences for your students.
1. Flipped Classroom
Let’s start with the most popular modern teaching technique. Traditional teaching methods instruct that learners are introduced to the subject in the classroom first, then study independently at home.
In a flipped classroom, students first learn about the subject on their own, then come to the classroom to resolve questions and practice with a collaborative project or another activity that fits the scope of the subject.
This method helps students have an active role and develop more autonomy in their learning. Instead of relying on the teacher to introduce them to the subject and do all the heavy lifting for them, students become their own teachers!
2. Tactile Learning
Also known as kinesthetic learning, tactile learning takes place through demonstrations and hands-on activities. This teaching method also applies to online classrooms, with the teacher demonstrating an activity and learners practicing simultaneously from their homes. It’s best suited for practical subjects and skills where learners need to develop dexterity or construct things.
The term tactile learning refers to active and collaborative learning. By working at the same pace as the teacher, mistakes can be spotted and corrected immediately, preventing the learner from developing a wrong technique.
3. VAK Learning
VAK learning is broader than the above-mentioned tactile method, as it involves all three different types of learners: visual, auditory, and kinesthetic.
Visual learners absorb information better when they view the material (textbooks, presentations, infographics, diagrams, charts), Auditory learners when they hear it (podcasts, videos, discussions), and Kinesthetic learners as they act out the content.
VAK learning has something for everyone – by using different types of learning material, you can be sure your students will always anticipate what’s coming next!
4. Project-Based Learning
In project-based learning, the teacher assigns a practical or theoretical project, and students must work to materialize the project. Projects aim to solve real-life problems and not abstract ones.
You can assign projects individually or in small teams. Whatever the case, working on a project is the best example of active learning. It enhances creativity and problem-solving and invites students to think practically.
5. Problem-Based Learning
While problem-based learning is similar to project-based learning, it differs in that the problem is presented before anything else is taught.
Learners work together or separately to decide on the best course of action to complete the project. In problem-based learning, the difficulty level gradually increases as we move from basic knowledge and initial discovery to more advanced projects.
6. Collaborative Learning
Collaborative learning is an umbrella term that includes any project or activity that learners work together on. A lesson plan based on collaborative learning helps build valuable soft skills like teamwork, delegation, time management, collaboration, decision-making, and social skills.
Through collaborative activities, learners also start to work on their self-awareness, as they need to evaluate their strengths and choose their part in the project depending on their skills. The fact that all group members are accountable for the outcome teaches them how their actions can affect the whole group as well.
7. Cooperative Learning
This learning method is similar to collaborative learning. The teacher organizes students into small groups, assigning each member a specific role and task to carry out. In cooperative learning, students have a common goal to reach – alongside, they learn to collaborate, take responsibility, and develop team spirit.
8. Game-Based Learning
Game-based learning is pretty much what the term describes – using games as part of the instruction process. Games have an element of active learning and are particularly engaging as they are a sort of “distraction” of their own from typical learning. The online, group, or role-playing games can all be part of the syllabus. Games automatically make the learning environment entertaining, and learning becomes an adventure. For instance, resources like ABCmouse incorporate interactive reading games into their platform, thus enhancing the learning experience by combining fun with education.
By definition, games usually involve a sense of reward and accomplishment, which is why they can be very motivating for learners. Similar to game-based learning is gamification, which involves game mechanics -and not necessarily actual games- like scores, levels, badges, and leaderboards.
9. Inquiry-Based Learning
Inquiry-based learning is a popular learning approach in modern education. Usually, the teacher asks an open-ended question or assigns a project, and learners do their own research to complete the project or form a theory.
Students can complete these activities either individually or in small groups. The teacher can provide the learners with the investigation method they should work with or let learners figure it out on their own. Or, it can all start from zero, with students coming up with the question themselves and working on the solution on their own.
Inquiry-based learning develops essential analytical and reasoning skills and curiosity. Students learn to be resourceful and observant. On a secondary level, this approach is also effective in enhancing communication and presentation skills.
10. Thinking-Based Learning
Thinking-based learning can (and should) be combined with all teaching styles as it’s a “complementary” type of learning. A thinking-based activity is asking deeper questions and “challenging” the truth of a given fact.
Thinking-based learning can also come in the form of self-reflection after completing a project. The teacher prompts learners to identify what went right and what went wrong in their methodology and what they could have done instead. This teaching strategy enhances critical thinking, analytical thinking skills, and self-awareness.
11. Competency-Based Learning
Competency-based learning can also be used in conjunction with other methods. In competency-based learning, teachers use learner assessments and hands-on projects to confirm the learner has achieved the desired learning objectives and is fit to move on to a more advanced level of difficulty.
Competency-based learning is, by default, personalized. The course curriculum is not pre-determined; it’s continuously adjusting depending on the student’s performance. Competency-based learning supports deep learning – learner assessment doesn’t measure whether the learner has memorized facts but whether they can actually put their knowledge into action.
12. Independent Learning
In independent learning, students are in full control of their learning, from choosing what they’ll learn and how they’ll learn to evaluate themselves. The teacher can still be a part of this process, but their role changes to that of a facilitator. They can support the student by giving them learning material and feedback on their progress.
Independent learning is as personalized and flexible as it gets. It gives learners full autonomy and freedom. On the other hand, it often lacks accountability and requires great self-motivation to go through with it.
What Are the Benefits of Modern Teaching Methods?
Now that we’ve discussed the top modern teaching methodologies, let’s see how they work together to help learners.
1. Active Learning
Modern teaching is activity-based and creates highly interactive learning experiences. Active learning is known to be not only more engaging – fascinating, even – but it doesn’t even begin to compare with passive learning in terms of effectiveness.
In the words of the famous proverb, “Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn.”
When students are actively involved in the learning process, whether it is through a discussion or a hands-on project, when they solve real-world problems and not memorizing facts and terms without context, they internalize the information with significantly less effort and for longer.
2. Soft Skills
Modern teaching also promotes essential soft skills, moving away from the narrow concept of education that focuses on technical skills. Critical thinking, problem-solving, teamwork, and many more character traits and competencies are developed naturally in the process and help students discover themselves and work with their strengths and weaknesses.
Modern teaching methods are flexible and offer different options for different learning styles and unique student needs, like those of learners with disabilities. Learners can learn at their own pace and with the material they like best.
4. Deep Learning
A natural byproduct of active learning is deep learning. When students are actively involved in the learning process, exploring and discovering things on their own, not only they are more engaged and excited. They’re also truly learning because they’ve acquired this new knowledge by doing and not by witnessing.
Learning Has Changed – Are You In?
Today, we’ve explored some exciting teaching strategies that have gained momentum and changed how students learn. Modern learning experiences are rich, substantial, and interactive, with students developing valuable life skills that will accompany them all their lives.
If you want to create these experiences in an online learning environment, look no further than LearnWorlds. Try our platform with a 30-day free trial and see all the amazing content you can create and build your own online school, complete with learner assessments, gradebook, advanced analytics, and Zoom and Webex integrations for your live sessions!
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What are the modern methods of teaching biology?
What are the modern methods of teaching mathematics?
What are the modern methods of teaching chemistry?
What is the difference between traditional and modern teaching methods?
In traditional teaching methods, the learner has a more passive role and learns by listening to lectures. Emphasis is placed on memorization. Modern teaching methods and strategies involve the learner in the process by offering an array of collaborative activities where the learner actively participates and explores the topic on their own, all the while enhancing essential life skills.
What are the benefits of using modern teaching methods?
Modern teaching methods are more engaging and effective. The learner is actively involved and therefore remains engaged, develops a deeper understanding of the topic and a stronger sense of accomplishment. Learning is assessed and confirmed based on actual results.
Because modern teaching methods allow students to explore in-depth and in fascinating ways new topics, students are more likely to discover their true inclinations and develop new interests. It allows for more creativity and self-discovery, as students often challenge themselves.
Further reading you might find interesting:
Androniki is a Content Writer at LearnWorlds sharing Instructional Design and marketing tips. With solid experience in B2B writing and technical translation, she is passionate about learning and spreading knowledge. She is also an aspiring yogi, a book nerd, and a talented transponster.