5E Model of Instruction (2022)

Key Ideas

  • Teachers use the 5E Model of Instruction to sequence lessons and activities which provide best first instruction for all students. Through this process they emphasize opportunities to personalize learning.
  • In each phase of the 5E Model of Instruction, teachers carefully consider how the evidence collected or information obtained builds student understanding of a phenomenon or a solution to a design problem.
  • The optimal use of the 5E Model is a learning sequence of two to three weeks where each phase is used as the basis for one or more lessons.
  • Using the 5E Model as the basis for a single lesson reduces the effectiveness of individual phases due to the shortening of the time and opportunities for meaningful and deep learning across a learning sequence.
  • According to research, there is the greatest impact on learning when phases are not omitted or their position shifted (e.g., Explain before Explore).
  • Phases can be repeated or looped as needed to create time or experiences to learn a concept or develop an ability (e.g., Engage, Explore, Explain, Explore, Explain, Elaborate, Evaluate).
  • Activities in a 5E learning sequence should be designed to integrate the Science and Engineering Practices, Crosscutting Concepts, and Disciplinary Core Ideas.

“The 5E Model of Instruction promotes active learning. Students are involved in more than listening and reading. They learn to ask questions, observe, model, analyze, explain, draw conclusions, argue from evidence, and talk about their own understanding. Students work collaboratively with peers to construct explanations, solve problems, and plan and carry out investigations.” –Rodger Bybee


The first phase of the 5E Model engages students by having them mentally focus on a phenomenon, object, problem, situation, or event. The activities in the Engage phase are designed to help students make connections between past and present learning experiences, expose prior conceptions, and organize thinking toward the essential questions and learning outcomes of the learning sequence.

The role of the teacher in the Engage phase is to present a situation, identify the instructional task, and set the rules and procedures for the activities. The teacher also structures initial discussions to reveal the range of ideas, experiences, and language that students use which become resources for upcoming lessons.

(Video) The 5E Instructional Model | Educational Online learning for kids | Learn Smart Singapore

Student Behaviors

  • Asks questions such as, “Why did this happen?” “What do I already know about this?” “What can I find out about this?” “How can this problem be solved?”
  • Shows interest in the topic through curiosity and expression of wonderings
  • Demonstrates engagement by expressing ideas, sharing observations, and creating initial models
  • Expresses current understanding of a concept or idea

Teaching Strategies

  • Raises questions or poses problems
  • Elicits responses that uncover students’ current knowledge
  • Helps students make connections to previous work
  • Posts learning outcomes and explicitly references them in the lesson
  • Invites students to express what they think
  • Invites students to raise their own questions


Once students have engaged in activities, they need time to explore ideas. Explore activities are designed so all students have common, concrete experiences which can be used later when formally introducing and discussing scientific and technological concepts and explanations. Students have time to investigate objects, events, or situations. As a result of their mental and physical involvement in these activities, students question events, observe patterns, identify and test variables, and establish causal relationships.

The teacher’s role in the Explore phase is to facilitate learning. They initiate activities and allow time and opportunity for students to investigate objects, materials, and situations. The teacher coaches and guides students as they record and analyze observations or data and begin constructing models or initial explanations.

Student Behaviors

  • Tests predictions and hypotheses; Forms new predictions and hypotheses
  • Discusses problems with others
  • Plans and conducts investigations in which they observe, describe, and record data
  • Tries different ways to solve a problem or answer a question
  • Creates initial models
  • Compares ideas with those of others

Teaching Strategies

  • Provides or clarifies questions or problems
  • Provides common experiences
  • Observes and listens to students as they interact
  • Acts as a consultant for students
  • Encourages student-to-student interaction
  • Asks probing questions to help students make sense of their experiences and redirect them when necessary
  • Provides time for students to puzzle through problems


The Explain phase consists of two parts. First, the teacher asks students to share their initial models and explanations from experiences in the Engage and Explore phases. Second, the teacher provides resources and information to support student learning and introduces scientific or technological concepts. Students use these resources and information, as well as ideas of other students, to construct or revise their evidence-based models and explanations. In engineering, students design solutions to problems based on established criteria.

(Video) Concept of 5-E learning model (English)

Student Behaviors

  • Shows models, explanations, answers, or possible solutions, to other students
  • Listens critically to and questions explanations offered by others
  • Explains using evidence from investigations
  • Uses labels, terminology, and formal scientific language
  • Compares current thinking with former thinking
  • Records ideas and current understanding
  • Adjusts ideas, models, and explanations as new evidence or reasoning is presented

Teaching Strategies

  • Encourages students to explain concepts and definitions in their own words
  • Asks for justification (evidence) and clarification from students
  • Formally provides definitions, explanations, and information through mini-lecture, text, internet, or other resources
  • Builds on student explanations
  • Provides time for students to compare their ideas with others and if desired revise their ideas


Once students have constructed explanations of a phenomenon or design solutions for a problem, it is important to involve them in further experiences that apply, extend, or elaborate the concepts, processes, or skills they are learning. Some students may still have misconceptions, or they may only understand a concept in terms of the exploratory experience. Elaborate activities provide time for students to apply their understanding of concepts and skills. They might apply their understanding to similar phenomena or problems.

Student Behaviors

  • Applies new labels, definitions, explanations, and skills in new, but similar, situations
  • Uses previous information to ask questions, propose solutions, make decisions, design experiments, or complete a challenge
  • Draws reasonable conclusions from evidence
  • Critiques the models, explanations, or arguments made by others using evidence and reasoning
  • Makes conceptual connections between new and previous experiences
  • Communicates understanding to others

Teaching Strategies

  • Expects students to use vocabulary, definitions, and explanations provided previously in new contexts
  • Encourages students to apply the concepts and skills in new situations
  • Provides additional evidence, explanations, or reasoning
  • Reinforces students’ use of scientific terms and descriptions previously introduced
  • Asks questions that help students draw reasonable conclusions from evidence and data


It is important that students receive feedback on the quality of their explanations. Informally, this may happen throughout the learning sequence. Formally, the teacher can also administer a summative evaluation at the end of the learning sequence. The Evaluate phase encourages students to assess their understanding and abilities and allows teachers to evaluate individual student progress toward achieving learning goals and outcomes.

Student Behaviors

  • Gives feedback to other students
  • Evaluates progress or knowledge
  • Checks work with a rubric or against established criteria
  • Assesses progress by comparing current understanding with prior knowledge
  • Asks additional questions that go deeper into a concept or leads to additional learning
  • Demonstrates understanding of Disciplinary Core Ideas, Crosscutting Concepts, and Science and Engineering Practices
  • Answers open-ended questions by using observations, evidence, and previously accepted explanations

Teaching Strategies

  • Asks open-ended questions such as, “Why do you think…?” “What evidence do you have?” “How would you answer the question?”
  • Observes and records notes as students demonstrate individual understanding of concepts learned and performance of skills
  • Uses a variety of assessments to gather evidence of student understanding
  • Provides opportunities for students to assess their own progress

Sample Template for Developing 5E Learning Sequences

Prior to building a 5E learning sequence, teachers should consider learning goals and outcomes, select the phenomenon/problem, and identify the essential question(s) that will drive learning. The “Planning for Engagement with Big Ideas” tool can be used to help with this initial work.

(Video) Inquiry science: The 5E model

5E Model of Instruction (1)

Evaluating a 5E Learning Sequence

Carefully evaluate a 5E learning sequence to ensure the three dimensions are integrated and related to the phenomenon or problem by answering the following questions:

  1. How does the 5E instructional sequence provide students the opportunity to explore, investigate, and explain the phenomenon or identify the design solution to a problem?
  2. How does the learning sequence help students demonstrate their understanding of the learning goals and outcomes?
  3. How does the 5E learning sequence ask for students to demonstrate the use of the Science and Engineering Practices and Crosscutting Concepts to explain a phenomenon or design solution using Disciplinary Core Ideas?
  4. How does the 5E learning sequence ensure access to learning for all students through universal design and best first instruction?
(Video) Introduction to the 5E Learning Sequence Model


Who created the 5E model of instruction? ›

Who developed the 5E model? o The Biological Science Curriculum Study (BSCS), a team led by Principal Investigator Roger Bybee, developed the instructional model for constructivism, called the "Five Es".

What are the 3 models of instruction? ›

Basic teaching models include direct instruction, lecture and inquiry-based learning. Inquiry-based learning is a teaching model that works especially well in mathematics and science classes.

How is inquiry and the 5E model different from traditional instruction? ›

The 5E model of science instruction is an inquiry-based approach that differs from traditional methods of science instruction. What are those differences? The main one is that with the 5E model the student leads the learning and the teacher acts as a guide.

How do you implement 5E in the classroom? ›

How the 5E Model Works
  1. Engage. The teacher uses short activities to promote curiosity. ...
  2. Explore. A lab investigation or hands-on activities are usually introduced in this phase as students attempt to investigate a problem. ...
  3. Explain. ...
  4. Elaborate. ...
  5. Evaluate.
4 Mar 2022

Do you think 5E model is effective in teaching math? ›

Although it was developed for teaching science, the 5E instructional model is useful in math—teachers can design units that provide meaningful sense-making opportunities for their students.

What are the four 4 types of instructional methods? ›

Do you know what the four types of instructional methods are? The four types are information processing, behavioral, social interaction, and personal. Within each model, several strategies can be used. Strategies determine the approach a teacher may take to achieve learning objectives.

What are the 5 teaching models? ›

The 5Es are an instructional model encompassing the phases Engage, Explore, Explain, Elaborate, and Evaluate, steps which educators have traditionally taught students to move through in phases.

How do you make a 5E lesson plan? ›

The 5E lesson supports inquiry-based instruction. It allows children to make discoveries and process new skills in an engaging way. Teachers can also adequately plan power objectives more effectively by using the 5E process.
The five E's of the 5E lesson plan are:
  1. Engage.
  2. Explore.
  3. Explain.
  4. Elaborate.
  5. Evaluate.
6 Mar 2022

What is engage in 5E model? ›

ENGAGE: This phase engages students with an activity that captures their interest and provides opportunities for them to share what they already know about a topic.

What is a 5E lesson plan template? ›

5E lesson plan template or model is a teaching sequence that provides progressive stages for designing Science programs and lessons. This encompasses the phases engage, explore, explain, elaborate, and evaluate.

What is the e5 model? ›

The e5 domain of engage, explore, explain, elaborate and evaluate can be used as a common lens for understanding and improving teaching in all educational settings. This approach can facilitate a more planned and structured collaboration through a commonly understood language and framework.

What are the benefits of using 5 E model in classroom instruction? ›

The 5E Model allows for both formal and informal assessment. During this phase, teachers can observe their students and see whether they have a complete grasp of the core concepts. It is also helpful to note whether students approach problems in a different way based on what they learned.

What is the best instructional model for teachers to use? ›

As regards to teaching new things to students, a strategy instructional model is the best one to use since it considers the level of potential that a student has and whatever the level is they will still all arrive at the same destination which is a new enhanced self in each student.

What is the best model of teaching? ›

4 Effective Learning Models for Students
  • Hands-on learning activities. Students often thrive when given the opportunity to create something on their own. ...
  • Collaborative projects. With collaborative projects, students get the chance to work with one another toward a common goal. ...
  • Experiential learning. ...
  • Direct instruction.

What are the 7 methods of teaching? ›

List Of Teaching Methods
  • Teacher-Centered Instruction. ...
  • Small Group Instruction. ...
  • Student-Centered / Constructivist Approach. ...
  • Project-Based Learning. ...
  • Montessori. ...
  • Inquiry-Based Learning. ...
  • Flipped Classroom. ...
  • Cooperative Learning.

What are the four 4 pillars of learning? ›

A central argument is that if education is to succeed in its tasks, curriculum as its core should be restructured or repacked around the four pillars of learning: learning to know, learning to do, learning to live together, and learning to be.

What are the 5 key stages of instructional design? ›

In this post we'll explore the five stages of the ADDIE model of instructional design—analysis, design, development, implementation, and evaluation—and how this process can help or hurt your learning evaluation methods.

What are the 4 models on teacher effectiveness? ›

Teacher Effectiveness
  • Self-Efficacy.
  • School Effectiveness.
  • Academic Achievement.
  • Cognitive Ability.
  • Research Worker.

Why is the 5E model important? ›

The 5E model provides a framework for a constructivist, guided-inquiry approach where students are supported to think and work scientifically by gathering and analysing their own evidence, and communicate their ideas with others.

What are the 5 C's for teachers? ›

Instead of teaching the same lesson plan to an entire class, educators should focus on the 5 Cs—collaboration, communication, creativity, and critical and computational thinking—to foster greater learning.

When was the 5E model developed? ›

The 5E Instructional Model (Bybee & Landes, 1990) can be used to design a science lesson, and is based upon cognitive psychology, constructivist-learning theory, and best practices in science teaching.

When was the BSCS 5E instructional Model created? ›

Beginning in the late 1980s, BSCS began using an instructional model in most of its programs. That model is commonly referred to as the BSCS 5Es and consists of the following phases: engagement, exploration, explanation, elaboration, and evaluation.

Who created the instructional design theory? ›

Robert Gagné's work has been the foundation of instructional design since the beginning of the 1960s when he conducted research and developed training materials for the military. Among the first to coin the term "instructional design", Gagné developed some of the earliest instructional design models and ideas.

Who proposed the theory of instruction? ›

Jerome Bruner (1915–) was one of the 20th century's most influential educational psychologists. Here, he writes about the process of pedagogy. He describes the key instructional components of curriculum: its sequence of activities in which learners become self-sufficient problem-solvers.

What is the purpose of the Explore in 5E model? ›

What is the Exploration Phase of the 5E Instructional Model. During the exploration phase, teachers provide students with two or more activities that allow students to explore a new topic and ask questions.

What is 5E lesson plan in history? ›

Lesson Plan: Phases in a 5E Learning Cycle: Engage, Explore, Explain, Elaborate, and Evaluate.

Can the 5e model be used in English? ›

Many fields of education use the 5 E's instructional model. Despite its popularity, the model's application in the field of teaching English is limited. The model has five phases; each begins with the letter 'e'. The phases are represented by the verbs: engage, explore, explain, elaborate, and evaluate.

What is the most popular instructional design model? ›

ADDIE is arguably the most important instructional design model because it provides a universal framework for ID work. All instructional design models follow some variation of a three-step process that includes: Analyzing a situation to determine the instructional need.

What are the 5 principles of instruction? ›

In his study of instructional design theories and models, educational researcher David Merrill identified and focused on these five principles: problem-centric, activation, demonstration, application, and integration.

Who is the father of instruction? ›

Known as the “father of American education,” Horace Mann (1796–1859), a major force behind establishing unified school systems, worked to establish a varied curriculum that excluded sectarian instruction.

What are the four major aspects in the theory of instruction? ›

Bruner (1966) states that a theory of instruction should address four major aspects: (1) predisposition towards learning, (2) the ways in which a body of knowledge can be structured so that it can be most readily grasped by the learner, (3) the most effective sequences in which to present material, and (4) the nature ...


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