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Psychomotor Skill


Psychomotor tasks involve physical skills. Psychomotor learning requires the use of muscular movement. Psychomotor tasks are skills that teach new muscular movements. There are different categories of psychomotor skills. The following are some of those categories.

Discrete Skills: Skills that consist of a single step or a few steps and have distinct task-determined beginnings and endings.

Continuous Skills: Skills whose beginning and ending points are more subtle and are performer-determined.

Closed Skills: Skills that are performed without active influence from the environment.

Open Skills: Skills that are usd when the environment causes the performer to make continuous adjustments.

Person and object motion: Skills that can be performed at rest or in motion.

There are two characteristics that distinguish skilled behavior from other activities. Skilled behavior employs executive subroutines to control decisions and supply coordinate skills in a hierarchical organization or plan. Skilled behaviors also employ temporal patterning of skills to integrate the sequence of performance overtime.

Here are some ways that instruction events can be adapted when psychomotor skills.

1.              Introduction

  •    To gain a student's attention the instructor will need to actively and explicitly direct the students attention to the learning task. They should also make the learner aware of how learning the skill will benefit them.
  •    Instructional purpose can be established by the instructor stating the purpose or by the instructor demonstrating the skill.
  •    To arouse the student's attention show how the skill will fit into later instruction.
  • During the preview of the lesson the instructor should tell what will be learned and how the lesson will proceed.

   2.          Body

  •    To activate prior knowledge, instructors should build upon previously learned skills.
  •   The process of information can be accomplished through the explanation and demonstration of the skills.
  •   The focus of attention can be accomplished using characteristics of the explanation or the demonstration. During the explanation or demonstration of the skill the instructor should make sure to place importance on the important steps of the skill.
  •   Strategies that teachers can suggest to assist learners could be visualization strategies, a mnemonic strategies or oral rehearsal strategies.
  •    There are different types of practice that can take place during stage. An instructor can choose between massed practice where the learner engages in one or few intensive extended period of practice with little or no rest in between or spaced practice where short practice sessions are distributed overtime. The instructor also has to choose whether to practice the entire skill at one time or practice separate parts of the skill before assembling the parts into a whole. The type of practice used depends on the complexity of the skill and the ability of learners.
  •   Feedback can come in the forms of internal or external feedback. Internal feedback comes from the learners senses and external feedback comes in the form of comments from the instructor. Both of these types tell the learner how they performed the skill and give them clues to how to improve their performance of the skill.

 3.            Conclusion

  •    The cognitive portion of psychomotor skills can be assessed using methods described during the previous strategies but the motor portion must be assessed in a different manner. The motor portion of the skill is usually assessed by having the learners demonstrate the skill.
  •    The summary and review should include a recap of the main points of the lesson.
  •   The transfer of knowledge is accomplished by additional practice accompanied by guidance and feedback.
  •   To remotivate and close the lesson, instructors need to remind learners how they can apply the skill in the future.

  4.          Assessment

  •    During the evaluation of feedback and remediation stage the learner processes how well they can perform the skill and then takes action to improve the skill if they are having trouble performing the skill or perfect the skill if he is able to to perform the skill.

To show an example of how a lesson teaching a psychomotor skill might be taught. I have provided a lesson that teaches a psychomotor skill.

The students will correctly demonstrate a chest pass and a bounce pass.

  1.          Introduction

  •    To gain student attention and arouse interest tell the students that they are continuing their unit on basketball and that this lesson is going to focus on passing skills.
  •    To establish the instructional purpose tell them that today they will be learning two types of passes the chest pass and the bounce pass and demonstrate each pass.
  •   To arouse the students attention show how these skills can be used during a basketball game.
  •   To preview lesson tell the students that they are going to learn learn to perform each of these skills and that they will playing some games to practice these skills.

 2.         Body

  •    To activate prior knowledge have the students practice dribbling the ball and throwing the ball to one another.
  •    To process the information go through the steps of each pass.
    Chest Pass Cues (bend, extend, release):
    Square body.
    Thumbs against chest -- elbows bent and out.
    Step toward the target.
    Extend arms -- fully release ball to target.
    Thumbs should now be pointed down.

    Bounce Pass Cues:
    Spread fingers along the sides of the ball.
    Start the ball at chest level.
    Keep knees bent.
    Release the ball by extending arms downwards.
    Upon release, turn palms outward toward floor.
    Ball should contact ground two-thirds of the way to the receiving player.
  •  Make sure that the position of the hands and how the ball is released is stressed during the focus of attention.
  •  To practice the skills have the students get in pairs and pass to one another for about ten minutes and then split the class into groups and have the class take part in passing relays.
  •  Give feedback by telling the students if they are correctly executing the passes or by offering suggestions on how to improve their passing.

  3.                Conclusion

  •   To summarize and review the lesson ask the students questions about the skill like where their hands should be on the ball, where should the ball bounce during the bounce pass, and what should they make sure their partner is doing before passing the ball.
  •   To remotivate and close the lesson remind students how these skills can be used in a basketball game.

4.                Assessment

  •     To assess the skills have the students demonstrate the passes for you and have them tell you the steps that have to be completed when performing each of these steps. You should also have the students determine if they are performing the skill correctly and determine what they can do to improve their performance.