Top 5 Teaching Styles 2023

What is your teaching style? We know that each of us is unique as a teacher but there are certain commonalities in how we approach our students. Also, some teaching styles are best suited for particular situations.

Our Chief Academic Thinker identified these Top 5 teaching styles that our teachers often employ. While some teachers may use predominantly one style, many teachers use a combination of these styles depending on the type of student, the grade level that they teach, and the subject matter.

The Presenter Style

This style, also called the authority style, is the least used by elementary teachers and many in K-12 believe it should be used infrequently. The Presenter Style is primarily used in a lecture or auditorium setting, whereby the teacher will give a one-way dissemination on a pre-assigned topic while students take notes and memorize key pieces of information.

Though popular in higher-education when there is a large group of students present, this style is less common in the classroom. This is because the strategy offers little to no student participation, making it impossible to meet the needs of each individual pupil.

Chief Thinker Note:  While we know this is the least effective style for most learners, why do a number of professional development sessions use this methodology?

The Demonstrator Style

Like the authority style of teaching, the demonstrator engages students more in the classroom. Instead of relying solely on a verbal lecture, the demonstrator style combines presentation with other teaching forms, including multimedia, demonstrations and class activities.

This style is particularly well- suited to science, music, art and physical education, where demonstrations are required to fully understand a topic. In other subject areas however, the demonstrator style may not be beneficial. Like the presenter style, there is little direct teacher to pupil interaction, so it can be difficult to accommodate the needs of all students.

The Group Style

For class activities that benefit from group work, peer feedback or lab-based learning, a delegator or group style of teaching is often employed. As a delegator, the teacher may take an observer role to promote collaboration and encourage peer-to-peer learning.

Teachers set up an activity and usually provide the desired outcomes or learning objectives to the groups.  Teachers can walk around the classroom freely to motivate students – sometimes providing help or other times just encouraging students to collaborate to create or achieve.

Traditional educators (think Harvard, Cambridge and wool jackets with crest) often consider the delegation or group style to be a poor teaching strategy given that it removes the teacher from a position of authority. Hopefully, we are more enlightened in K-12 than that.

The Facilitator Style

The teaching style that has become a predominant style in K-12 education is the facilitator style, where teachers facilitate activity-based learning in the classroom.  Unlike the presenter style, teachers ask students to question rather than simply have the answer given to them. Activities are used to promote self-discovery and develop problem-solving skills, which can often lead to the student developing a much deeper understanding of the topic.

There are, however, challenges to this style as teachers must actively interact with individual pupils, which can be difficult in a large classroom setting. Administrations must support smaller class sizes, sufficient resources and flexible facilities for this type of learning to have maximum impact.

The Hybrid Style

Most teachers adopt an integrated teaching style that incorporates their personality, preferences and interests into their teaching. This strategy is known as the hybrid style and is popular in most K-12 classrooms. Teachers who use the hybrid style are able to tailor learning for individual students, incorporating their knowledge, demonstration and motivational skills. 

One of the challenges with the hybrid style is that it requires teachers to be all things to all students. But isn’t that our job?



What is your primary teaching style?


  1. The hybrid style allows teachers to implement different styles at different times, and as educators, we must be flexible to meet the needs of our students.

  2. Definitely, I use the hybrid style. I teach severely disabled TK – 1. My whole job is to constantly modify my teaching style to meet the needs of each individual student.

What do you THINK?

%d bloggers like this: