Annotated Bibliography of Resources for Educational Reform, Coherent Teaching Practice, and Improved Student Learning

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  • Farrell, E. (1991). Instructional models for English language arts, K-12. In J. Flood, J. M. Jensen, D. Lapp, & J. R. Squire (Eds.), Handbook of research on teaching the English language arts (pp. 63-84). New York: MacMillan.

Farrell describes the three curriculum models for designing instruction in English/language arts classrooms. The Mastery Model requires that instructional objectives be clearly stated and broken into small discrete units for learning. Research suggests that mastery learning measures paper and pencil achievement well, but does not measure style and expression in writing. The Heritage Model promotes the use of content that advances the culture and heritage of the nation. In practicality, a standard canon that is used by all teachers has never been developed. Selection of content is determined by each individual teacher. The Process Model is a more student-centered approach that requires the teacher to create an environment that encourages students to come to their own understandings and learnings. This model is used more actively at the secondary level and develops strong analytical skills in students. While it is true that teachers may use all of these models within an instructional unit, research has shown that teachers do tend to use a specific model predominately.

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