What Are Behavioral Objectives? Part 3 of 5: Gantt Charts


This is the third article in a five part series about Behavioral Objectives. The articles in order of publication are:

  1. Behavioral Objectives; An Overview
  2. The Scope and Sequence Chart
  3. Gantt Charts for Progress Planning
  4. Setting Standards of Achievement or Fluency
  5. Why This Component Works

Questions? As a parent, would it be useful for you to know:

  • when your son or daughter was going to complete their reading program this year?
  • where they currently are in the program?
  • how quickly they are moving through the program?

Here’s how you can know – The Gantt Chart

  • Is designed to keep track of progress on a daily basis for one month of school at a time.
  • Depicts the number of courses the student is taking.
  • Shows how many lessons the teacher expects to cover in that subject in one month.
  • Shows the actual number completed within and across subjects in one month.
  • Provides a record that allows us to determine progress and predict future gains based on past performance.

The Gantt Chart outlines the proposed program for Eric over the course of one month in reading, math, spelling, and reading comprehension, creative writing and grammar. The student attends for half days Monday through Friday for each of 4 weeks, a total of 20 days. Eric will miss two days because of the Easter statutory holidays and one day for a doctor’s appointment…

Eric is an illiterate adult student attending the learning center each day for 3 hours. He does another 2-3 hours of homework per day.

The Expected Results

The Gantt chart depicts the academic program for core subjects for the month. It summarizes the lessons weekly and at the end of the month.

  • Reading – Eric was enrolled in a 60 lesson reading program and is expected to complete three reading lessons per day. 57 lessons in all
  • Math – The student is enrolled in a 65 lesson math program and is expected to do three lessons per day including fluency checks. 57 lessons in total
  • Spelling – He was enrolled in a 140 lesson spelling program and is expected to do 2 lessons each day including fluency checks. 37 Lessons in all
  • Reading Comprehension – Eric was also enrolled in a 65 lesson reading program and is expected to complete two lessons each day including fluency checks. Total of 38 Lessons
  • Creative Writing – During the same month, Eric was enrolled in a creative writing program and is expected to write a story each day. 19 stories in all
  • Grammar – He was enrolled in a Grammar course and is expected to do 2 lessons per day. A total of 22 lessons

By the end of the month, Eric was expected to have completed 230 lessons in reading, reading comprehension, spelling, math and creative writing.

The Observed Results

  • Reading – Eric completed 56 of 57 lessons expected.
  • Math – He completed 68 of the 57 lessons expected.
  • Spelling – He also completed 37 of 40 lessons expected.
  • Reading Comprehension – Eric did 38 of 38 lessons expected.
  • Creative Writing – He wrote only 9 of 19 stories expected.
  • Grammar – As indicated by the chart, Eric finished 15 of 22 his grammar assignments.

Interpreting the Results

The Gantt Chart displays Eric’s overall progress in all of his courses for an entire month on a single page. It indicates that he was absent on three days due to holidays and a doctor’s appointment.

  • He is doing well in reading.
  • He excelled in math.
  • He is slightly ahead of schedule in spelling.
  • He is on track in reading comprehension lessons.
  • He is struggling with expressive writing.
  • He is also struggling with grammar.

Eric’s teacher can now make some relevant data based decisions for the next month. More time might be dedicated to creative writing and to the study of grammar. The reading and spelling lessons might continue at the same rate. Math may be given slightly less time in order to focus on improving Eric’s creative writing and grammar.

Sharing the findings with Eric gives him good feedback about his progress, his strengths and his weaknesses, and what is proposed as a way to overcome those weaknesses.

This Gantt chart can be added to any others that Eric has completed for an overall view of his learning over previous months and as one more component of the forecast for the time and volume of work needed to complete his literacy program.


We have used Gantt charts with thousands of injured workers who need literacy training as a precursor to completing their secondary school credits for a high school diploma. We have consistently assisted illiterate adult clients to catch up, do their high school courses with almost straight A’s and graduate in 12 months or less.

The Gantt chart works particularly well in the Maloney Method system where all courses have a given number of lessons that are equal in length and do not become more difficult for the student despite becoming more complex. This model can be used in any situation where lessons are divided into daily units. Our method can be instituted anywhere to teach basic literacy skills to any population.

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