Gagne’s events of instruction applied to helping swimming teachers develop a specific stroke.


1. Gaining attention
The scene opener, even the preview or title sequence. e.g After – then before. A competitive ten year old swimming a beautiful stroke, and then a weak swimmer showing how it starts out with problems and mess galore.

2. Informing the learner (their guardian and coach/teacher) of the objective. Presenting the destination and what milestones have to be reached, or what crests to climb. e.g A programme of development over two years, over six terms, with as many galas and assessments, with fun too.

3. Stimulating recall of prerequisite learning
Tapping into what has already been understood – creating empathy. The known to make the unknown less scary. So swimming as play.

4. Presenting the stimulus material
Presenting the case, offering evidence that might impress or inspire, that could be controversial and memorable. The interactivities, or e–tivities, or interplay between person and PC, or other people online. More than passive viewing or being taught.

5. Providing learning guidance
Offering a way through the maze, the thread through the labarynth or the helping hand. The programme of events, the menu.

6. Eliciting the performance
Now it’s their turn. Having a go in a measured way, making it progressively more difficult, returning to some learning, building on it, adding more …

7. Providing feedback
Sandwiched, constructive feedback on which to build. Where social learning is vital to provide support, guidance and motivation.

8. Assessing the performance
How are targets going? Assessment, as in testing, as part of the learning process, whether a multi–choice or practical. How are they doing? Have objectives been met?

9. Enhancing retention and transfer
Did it stick, could they pass it on and so become the teacher? What event or events can embed, even celebrate the achievement so that others may benefit from it?

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