Classroom instruction as performance

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Classroom instruction as performance refers to a view (implicit or explicit) that treats the explainer's activities in the class as a "performance" with the performer being the instructor and the audience being the students. Such a performance may, for instance, be compared with the performance of entertainers (such as stage magicians), musicians, dancers, or theater performers.



A basic minimum of good "performance" is necessary to maintain the order in the classroom necessary to promote learning. Just as with other kinds of performers, aspects of the performance craft, ranging from board technique to techniques for interacting with students can have a significant impact on both the real and perceived effect of teaching.


  • Many elements that seem like good performance either do not affect or in some cases negatively affect good learning.
  • Good performance can sometimes increase the extent of the double illusion of transparency.
  • A focus on evaluating teachers based on performance leads them to neglect methods that genuinely encourage student learning.