- Instruction and demonstration: The teacher explains to the students how and when to use the skill and then shows students how to perform the skill.
- Behavioural rehearsal: In this phase, students practise the skill using role-playing either at the front of the classroom or in small groups. Role-playing scenarios should be clearly described and should not take long (ideally around one minute) to allow as many students as possible to participate.
- Feedback: The teacher comments on the strengths and weaknesses of each student’s skills “performance”. It is important to focus on the skill and not on the learner. The teacher has to provide feedback in a gentle and supportive manner so that students understand which aspects they performed well, which need improvement, and how to improve.
- Social reinforcement: The teacher underlines each student’s positive elements of his or her skills performance. Focusing on one to two elements should be adequate. It is important to have in mind that the self-efficacy of each student should be improved, and therefore each participant’s improvement is assessed individually.
- Extended practice: The final step in the skills training process is an extended practice in which students receive behavioural “homework” assignments.
- For example, when practising coping with stress, this practice could be to practice at home a technique for coping with anxiety once per day. Or when practising resistance to peers, the activity could be to say no to a friend when the student does not want to accept any kind of suggestion or respond assertively in three different situations.
This part comes to facilitate the use of learned skills in situations outside the classroom, promote application to different situations, and encourage students to use the skills as part of their everyday lives. Teachers can further facilitate the process by discussing further with the students how they are evolving or what they could improve or change.