Guided practice (The Barbara Rogoff model)

In this blog post, we will explain what exactly is guided practice, how to use it to your advantage and we will also give you some examples of guided practice activities.

What is Guided practice?

Guided practice is a teaching practice developed and popularized by educational psychologist Barbara Rogoff.

The model is divided into 3 phases and is great for when students need to learn something new.

Phase 1: The teacher shows the students how to perform a certain task correctly. (e.g. how to draw a cat)

Phase 2: Students will try to complete the task with the help and guidance of the teacher (e.g. the teacher will guide the student on how to better draw the cat’s ears) 

Phase 3: Students will complete the new task independently, based on what they learned in the first two phases. (e.g. the student will be able to finish his drawing by himself).

The goal of Guided Practice is to help and support the student in accomplishing an independent task.

The second phase, in particular, is very important because the teacher is able to teach directly into each child’s specific needs.

Teachers understand the idea of learning modalities and thus, use child specific teaching styles too in classrooms.

Who is Barbara Rogoff?

According to the National Academy of Education, Barbara Rogoff is the UC Santa Cruz Distinguished Professor of Psychology at the University of California-Santa Cruz. 

She received the 2013 Award for Distinguished Lifetime Contributions to Cultural and Contextual Factors in Child Development, from the Society for Research in Child Development.

She is a Fellow of the Association for Psychological Science, the American Anthropological Association, the American Psychological Association (APA), and the American Educational Research Association.

Rogoff’s research focuses on cultural aspects of learning, with a special interest in collaboration and observation, and Indigenous-heritage, Mexican, Guatemalan, and other communities of the Americas.

Her recent books have received major awards: Learning Together: Children and Adults in a School Community (finalist for the Maccoby Award of Division 7 of the APA); The Cultural Nature of Human Development (William James Book Award of Division 1 of the APA); and Developing Destinies: A Mayan Midwife and Town (Maccoby Award of Division 7 of the APA).

How to use Guided practice to your advantage

Structuring Guided Practice

There are several ways in which a teacher can structure guided practice. Below you will read just a few examples:

  • For example, before asking the students to answer a question, the teacher may think out a possible answer. Only then will he ask his students to write down their answer. Of course, many of them will write a version of the answer that has already been given, but through this technique the teacher allows students to be inspired by his answer to develop a more detailed response in their own notebook (their version of the truth). 
  • Another great example is letting children talk to each other for a few minutes. Groups of 2, 4 or 6 students can be formed, who will brainstorm and come to an agreement regarding the answer. Another version of this exercise is for students to answer the question in their own notebook, then group together to talk to their classmates. Students are encouraged to be inspired by the answers of others.
  • The teacher can ask his students what they understand from a certain context, and he will ask them to deduce certain information. Making inferences is a great way to help students notice certain aspects that they might have otherwise ignored.

Use Guided Practice and these activities to help students with learning difficulties, or to demonstrate your pedagogical skills during lesson reviews and observations.

Additional Tips for Guided Practice

  • Before the actual lesson, include Guided Practice in the lesson plan. Choose the right moments for each phase, but especially the moments for phase 2, when you have to help your students who may not have understood very well what to do. Sometimes you may have to go back to phase 1.
  • It is very important to connect with your students and follow their reactions. Even if you have made a plan, you may need to change the phases for guided practice when you least expect it. Ask for feedback from students, and change your plan according to their needs.
  • To motivate your students, read aloud one or two of the students’ examples.

Guided Practice Activities

There are many examples and methods to implement guided practice during an hour, so as to achieve your goal but at the same time to keep students engaged.

Diagramming – The teacher explains the process of photosynthesis, provides the key terms and essential steps.

Students in groups of 2 or 3 people then work on their own diagram that explains the process of photosynthesis.

Completing graphic organizers – All students together with the teacher compliment the graphic organizer about the characters of a novel they had to read.

After this joint exercise, each student will continue to complete the chart with their own ideas and knowledge.

Experimenting – The teacher shows the students how to make a paper flower.

Each guard is written on the board, along with a list of necessary tools. Afterwards, each child makes a paper flower itself.

Analyzing – The teacher explains to the students the correct steps to write a scientific paper.

In groups of 2, 4 or 6 children, students will try to make a structure of a scientific paper.

Then, each student will write their own scientific paper on a topic of their choice.

What you need to know to make a lesson plan

In order to make a lesson plan, you must first consider the type of lesson you set out to teach.

Depending on the goals set by you, the lesson can be:

  • communication of new knowledge;
  • Mixt;
  • Evaluation
  • Repetition.

You have to set:

  • Reference goals (what you intend to do during the class)
  • Specific goals (curriculum content)

Write down the steps of each lesson:

1. Organizational moment – 5 minutes needed to start the lesson. 

2. Verification of knowledge. The information from the previous lesson is shortly revised.

3. Announcing the subject and the goals pursued;

4. Capturing the student’s attention;

5. Learning guidance – students receive new information, are tested or recapitulate; 

6.. Providing feedback;

7. Concluding the lesson.

The activities are divided into two categories: the teacher’s activity (for example: evaluating students) and the students’ activity (for example: completing the answers to the questions).

Side Note: I have tried and tested various products and services to help with my anxiety and depression. See my top recommendations here, as well as a full list of all products and services our team has tested for various mental health conditions and general wellness.

Conclusions

In this blog post, we explained what exactly is guided practice, how to use it to your advantage and we also gave you some examples of guided practice activities.

The main goal of Guided Practice is to help and support the student in accomplishing an independent task.

The second phase, in particular, is very important because the teacher is able to teach directly into each child’s specific needs.

Use Guided Practice and these activities to help students with learning difficulties, or to demonstrate your pedagogical skills during lesson reviews and observations.

Please feel free to ask questions or to leave a comment on the content in the comments section below.

FAQ about Guided practice

What is a guided practice?

Guided practice is a teaching practice developed and popularized by educational psychologist Barbara Rogoff.

The model is divided into 3 phases and is great for when students need to learn something new.

What is the difference between guided practise and independent practice?

The difference between guided practise and independent practice is that in guided practice the teacher helps the student first understand the task, and secondly doing it. Independent practice means the students are expected to practice on their own. 

Why is guided practice important?

Guided practice is important because it helps students understand better their task, it prevents unnecessary mistakes and it also teaches them that while they can rely on the teacher and colleagues, they can eventually do anything independently.

Who created the I do we do you do model?

The I Do WE Do YOU Do model was created and popularized by psychologists and educators such as Barbara Rogoff,  Anita Archer, John Hollingsworth and John Fleming.

Further Reading

  1. Standards-Based Comprehension Strategies & Skills: Guided Practice Book, Level 5 (Practice with Purpose), by Christine Dugan 
  1.  TARGETED READING LEVEL 3 STUDENT GUIDED PRACTICE BOOK, by KRISTI STARK M.A.ED. CONNI MEDINA, M.A.ED
  1. FOCUSED READING Student Guided Practice Book, by K. Olmstead

References 

Pearson, P.D., & Gallagher, M.C. (1983). The Instruction of Reading Comprehension. Contemporary Educational Psychology 8, 317-344.

Sharratt, L. (2013). Scaffolded Literacy Assessment and a Model for Teachers’ Professional Development. In Elliott-Johns, S. & Jarvis, D. (Eds.) Perspectives on Transitions in Schooling and Instructional Practice. (pp. 138-155) Toronto: University of Toronto Press.

Naeducation.org – Barbara Rogoff

Was this post helpful?

[Sassy_Social_Share type="standard"]