by Martin Boedicker
taken from the book:
Once the goals and content for a Tai Chi lesson have been determined, one should opt for a general teaching concept.
Two fundamental concepts are on offer:
1. The closed concept (deductive instruction)
A deductive approach to instruction is a teacher centred approach, i.e. the student gets clear and concise instructions from the teacher for learning a movement.
This approach is often used for basic material and ensures that the student quickly reaches a certain goal by specific instruction. After a short time a new movement can be practised. For students who arrive exhausted from daily life, this type of teaching is felt as quite relaxing.
However, the closed concept involves one way communication, encourages passiveness, can restrict the student and he/she can develop a shallow movement experience. Little attention is paid to methods of problem-solving.
2. The open concept (inductive instruction)
The open concept is student-centred. It imposes more responsibility on students for their own learning. The student works and solves problems independently. This stimulates thinking and interest. The teacher has a supportive role only.
In the open concept the student has a greater opportunity of acquiring experience with the movements, which can result in a more permanent learning.
On the other hand he/she has to make the effort of taking the initiative and the whole process consumes time. Further on there is the risk that he/she will establish incorrect movement patterns. However, the aspect of self-reliance is an important issue and should not be underestimated.
- Which concept suits my teaching best?
- Which concept suits the needs of the group?
- Does it make sense to vary the concepts within the course or will this unsettle the students?
- Can I imagine a hybrid of the concepts?