Adapting the 5E Teaching Model to Remote Classrooms
There are several teaching models out there, such as the Social Enquiry Model, the Synectic’s Model, and the 5E Teaching Model. The 5E is a favorite of many teachers today. But these days are a little different. Teaching isn’t the same as it was a year ago. Today, our students are several miles apart from us learning through an online setting and require more face-to-face time. How do we adapt the 5E Teaching Model to remote classrooms?
Introduction to the 5E
The 5E Teaching Model, just like every other model out there, is merely a blueprint to help you meet your students where they are and better teach and reach them. Thankfully, it’s not only useful in a traditional classroom, but it’s adaptable to many classroom models and teaching methods. This includes today’s model of the remote classroom.
The Stages of the 5E Teaching Model
This teaching model has five different stages. A teacher runs through each of these stages, one-by-one, until she reaches the end of the model. At this point, her student should know the material well and be able to retain it and reproduce it.
These five stages are:
Stage One: Engage
This first part of Stage One is similar to any first stage in public speaking and even book writing. You must grab your students’ attention by getting them interested in the topic of the day. This is simply done by demonstrating how the day’s objective can be used in everyday life or telling an interesting, yet applicable story (personal is best). Many other things can be done to garner the attention of your students, depending on their grade level and the subject you are teaching.
Secondly, you must assess their current knowledge of the topic. You don’t want to bore them with facts they already know; you’ll lose your students. Likewise, you don’t want to skip foundational blocks that are vital to understanding and retaining the objective, either.
This can be done just as easily in remote classrooms as in traditional classrooms.
- Engage your students in a discussion about the topic through a group chat.
- Administer a survey.
- Have your students complete a questionnaire.
The great thing about the questionnaire or survey is that these can be administered before class. These can be structured in a way to not only assess your students’ knowledge but also to learn more about each student’s background and current situations. The more you know about them, the easier time you’ll have coming up with discussions, topics, and activities to engage their interest at the beginning of the lesson.
Stage Two: Explore
This stage is merely completed by giving your students the reins so that they can explore the topic on their own. This stage allows them to develop their own understanding of the topic.
The best approach to this stage is to take a Flipped Classroom approach. In this approach, your students are doing the leading, and you are merely the “referee.”
A few ideas to adapting the 5E Model to remote classrooms at this stage are:
- Allow for a group brainstorming session.
- Let your students complete a topic-centered activity. This might include playing a relevant computer game, watching relevant videos, or doing a craft that applies to the concept being learned.
- Administer topic-centered worksheets containing questions that are created to shape your students’ thinking toward the goal objective, yet allowing them to come to that conclusion on their own.
Stage Three: Explain
This stage is crucial. In Stage Three, your students get to explain the concept in their own words. However, they are not merely left to their own devices in this stage. You will also be gently correcting their viewpoints if they are off base by redirecting their thinking and allowing them to come to the correct conclusion as a group. Then, you will be offering praise when they demonstrate the right views of the topic and mediating the conversation to keep students from demeaning one another.
A vital piece of this stage in the 5E Model is monitoring the conversation in such a way and providing feedback in such a way that no student ever feels like they are losing face. They must feel comfortable in giving their thoughts on the subject. They must know that they’ll never be scoffed at or made to feel or look “stupid.”
- Have a group discussion about the topic, allowing the students to explain their views and offer feedback to each other.
- Allow your students to create a video so that they can teach the concept. Offer feedback.
- Give your students time to draw a picture representing what they learned. Allow them to explain the drawing and how it relates to what they have learned.
Stage Four: Extend
At this stage of the 5E Teaching Model, you are again allowing your students to explore the concept they are learning. This stage is a little different than Stage Two in that your students now have more of a knowledge base to extend with.
- Give your students the tools to do crafts or build models.
- Let them brainstorm as a group to come up with ideas on how to implement what they have learned.
- Do an experiment with them (as they watch and maybe follow along), asking them what they think will happen along the way according to the theories or hypotheses they have learned.
Adapting the 5E Teaching Model to Remote Classrooms at this stage helps the students to internalize their knowledge. They will better understand it and remember the concepts longer.
Stage Five: Evaluate
Every effective educational leader has several things that they do to reach that stage of efficiency. One thing is that they follow an effective teaching model. Every effective teaching model has a stage of evaluation.
This stage of the 5E Teaching Model is a little different from many models. This stage is not done by merely assessing your students’ knowledge on the topic as it is in many models. Instead, not only are you are evaluating your students for learning and understanding, but you are also evaluating the aptitude of your teaching methods so that they can be further refined.
In assessing your students, you are deciding if you need to implement further explanation or extension.
There are several ways for adapting the 5E Teaching Model to remote classrooms at this stage. You can reuse some of the methods I have provided already if they have not been used. A few previously used examples are:
- Have each student create a video teaching the objective.
- Allow each student to draw a picture or diagram (depending on the subject and grade-level) of the concept and explain it.
There are multiple other methods that you can use to evaluate your students’ learning and understanding. A few are:
- Assign a paper in which your students must explain the concept. It doesn’t have to be long. It merely must have enough content to adequately explain the concept that has been taught.
- Administer a second survey, questionnaire, or quiz to evaluate what has been learned.
- Have the students use the material they learned to design a test for others. If you’re going to create a test, you must know the material!
The concept behind using the 5E Teaching Model is to give the students a better chance at long-term retention. Psychology Today said, “Variety and contrast drive long-term retention.” These tips will help you in adapting the 5E Teaching Model to Remote Classrooms.