Incidental Teaching


Incidental teaching involves structuring and sequencing educational objectives and learning opportunities so that they occur within ongoing, typical activities and take advantage of student interests and motivation. Most parents and teachers are very accustomed to teaching children many different skills throughout the day in the natural environment. For example, parents may point to pictures in a book and ask the child to label the pictures. Teachers ask children to make requests and choices in the classroom. These are all teaching opportunities. Incidental teaching involves being intentional and planning for those “teachable moments” that are initiated by the child. Through structuring the environment, the teacher can create a situation where the child is interested in an activity that provides the opportunity for the teacher to teach a specific task or skill.

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