The (Messy) Instructional Designer

Why shouldn’t Instructional Design be messy too?

All you classroom teachers out there, have you ever designed a lesson and had it work perfectly the first time you taught it? I never did. Good instructional designers might argue that my lesson probably had some holes in it. I have to agree–it did, and testing it in front of a group of students was the fastest way to figure out the holes. In fact, some of my best lesson plan components grew out of a successful moment that I had. I remember getting some of the components right but then something always changed. I know that experience helps to shorten the process.
A long time ago, I got really creative, and took a taught the myth of Icarus and Daedalus the students in which they all created their own costumes, and acted it out. During the process, one of the kids would ask an incredible question, and my original lesson plan flew out the window.

Good instructional design leaves some room for tweaking and for creativity. Looking through my old lesson plans from elementary school teaching, and for working in the library I started thinking about some questions that pushed me when designing lessons..

  • Good instructional design gets tested and tweaked.
  • Curriculum planning is like ADDIE, but learning is more like real life
  • If we learn and evolve by doing and testing, how does an instructional designer test? Don’t we have to teach the lesson to learn if it will work?

I am intrigued by the instructional design process, and why more testing is not built into it….

Email this to someoneShare on FacebookShare on Google+Share on LinkedInPin on PinterestShare on TumblrTweet about this on TwitterShare on StumbleUponDigg this