Season 1 Episode 20: Explicit Teaching vs. Problem Based Learning

By Chey Cheyney & Pav Wander

Chey and Pav, two experienced middle school teachers from the Greater Toronto Area in Ontario, Canada, take listeners through the in’s and out’s of the field of Teaching, Learning and Leadership. Through their anecdotal, yet often comedic banter, laced with caring insightfulness, they take their audience into a conversation that is surely eye-opening and entertaining, while tackling some of the real, and ever-changing issues that exist in Education.

In Episode 20 of Season 1, Chey & Pav discuss the benefits of Explicit Teaching Strategies and Problem Based Learning Strategies. They talk about why it is important to understand that it is necessary to use both aspects in order to run a good program in class. Students are not able to fully process the rich tasks until they have enough of their foundational skills covered.
Chey and Pav refer back to an article they read, to which the link is provided below. In the article, the author, Andrew J. Martin talks about how it is possible to teach the basics and attack problem based learning at the same time. Teachers can effectively do this by using Load Reduction instruction. 
With this principle, teachers use a very specific method to optimally teach a foundational skill – through lots of guided practice and feedback, until the skill is stored in the long term memory, and thus does not need to be processed each and every time it is utilized in a problem based scenario. 
The topic is important as there has been long-standing debate about whether Explicit teaching is more important than the Problem based approach – and so Chey and Pav ensure to stress that both must work in conjunction with one another in to have more effective teaching. 
Chey and Pav welcome James Tucker, teacher from Costa Rica, as their 3 Enlightened Minutes guest – and he talks about the exact same topic: the importance of Explicit teaching alongside Problem Based Learning. 
Chey and Pav end the episode with some anecdotal stories from their own experience in the classroom. 
Inspire, don’t Require
Always be a Humble Servant, and
Education Never Dies.
You can Check out our 3 Enlightened Minutes Guest: James Tucker at:
Article referenced by Chey and Pav in this Episode:
Chey and Pav are part of the School Rubric team. Check out their Origin Story in InterACT magazine here:
They also post weekly articles based on their most recent episodes! Catch those in the Perspectives section of the School Rubric website here:
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