Level 12 / 99 York Street, Sydney, NSW 2000
T: (02) 9299 2845
F: (02) 9290 2274
Independent practice is also known as the “you do” component of an explicitly taught lesson. Independent practice provides an opportunity for students to practise the skills or concepts from the lesson. Its purpose is to increase students’ fluency, enabling for a more automatic recall of the skills that have been learnt as well as freeing up space in working memory so that higher-order tasks can be applied. Independent practice should be meaningful and directly link to the key concepts and learning intentions of the lesson. Students should be able to complete independent practice tasks with a minimum of teacher assistance. During this component of teaching however, teachers should still check for student understanding and provide effective feedback.
Teachers should ensure that independent practice tasks closely match to the learning intentions of the lesson. Tasks should not include skills or concepts that have not been previously taught. Independent practice tasks can be completed by students individually, in pairs or in small groups and is most beneficial when teachers ensure that it is structured. Teachers can use phrases such as: Class in a few minutes we will go over the answers to Problems 1 and 2. Students should know how to complete the tasks as well as understand the teacher’s expectations about their completion.
Click to observe different examples of independent practice tasks.
A barrier can be an obstacle or issue that may prevent students from successfully accessing and participating in the instructional practice. During Independent Practice, there can be some potential barriers that need to be considered for students with additional needs. These barriers may include the complexity of teacher instructions, access to resources and material and the modes of response such as written or verbal.
Some potential adjustments may include:
This webpage provides specific information about independent practice with video examples and ideas about possible independent practice tasks.
In this podcast, Josh Vine unpacks the ’you do’ component of the lesson. The role of teachers and monitoring as well as other key features such as extension work for students is also discussed.