mox, when I taught western lessons, we would do the following with beginners/intermediates:
guiding - lots of circles, changes of direction etc.
leg aids - introduction to leg aids followed by exercises to improve
transitions (lots of them)
improving balance - lots of stirrupless work, hands above your head, out to the sides, etc.
confidence building - usually through games
rating the horse- maintaining a nice slow jog, etc.
basically, at this point, I just "put miles" on the riders...and let them learn how to correct/troubleshoot without me having to tell them.
Not until the rider had mastered all of these skills did i start to refine them
does that make sense?