I Do, We Do, You Do Home Economics: Explicit Instruction Connecting Content with Ideology

  • Jay Deagon College of Education, School of Education and the Arts, Central Queensland University, Australia
Keywords: home economics, explicit instruction, ideology, professional practice


Explicit instruction is a teaching model that demonstrates to students what to do and how to do it. One purpose of ideology is to focus the who, what, when, where, and why of a disciplinary field. Trained home economists make a sustained commitment to the core ideology of home economics. Mechanisms for identifying locally relevant challenges faced by individuals, families, and communities are embedded in the home economics knowledge base. To identify challenges and locate solutions (who, what, when, where, and how), home economics education programmes must actively teach or provide explicit instruction about the ideology that underpins the home economics disciplinary field. Neglecting ideology results in teaching unrelated subjects or compartmentalised content that may dilute connection to the core aims of the home economics’ ‘big picture’. This paper outlines how explicit instruction and embedded home economics ideology have positively impacted perceptions of the discipline amongst professionals who are new to the field. In teaching and learning environments, making home economics ideology visible and reinforced continuously across all content specialisation areas, the author observed that students acquired the words and concepts to explain the importance of home economics to others. Professionals who are new to the field became more confident and passionate advocates for home economics, because they had learnt and appreciated, through explicit instruction techniques, the what, the how to, and the why of home economics. Equipped with the discipline’s core ideology, professionals who make visible the home economics ‘big picture’ (i.e., the why) to others are better equipped to enact real-world applications of home economics that can adapt continuously to meet ever-changing and complex societal needs.


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