Saturday, October 29, 2011

Objectives for Learning

Objectives and assessments should be identified to ensure that students remain on task and are able to articulate why the lesson is important and what goals are necessary for them to achieve. By identifying these critical take-away, you begin to think about essential learning outcomes and how relationships can be developed and built on main concepts. This is accomplished by looking at the standards of learning (SOLs) for your topic and deciphering what the big picture is and how best to identify the importance of this picture to your students. For example, below are two SOLs. Identify the take-away from each. Questions to consider:
• What are the most important concepts for students to understand from this unit?
• What is important for students to remember about this unit a year from now?
• What observable behaviours do I want students to demonstrate and which cognitive domains will be evident? Finally write a real-world problem to represent the algebraic expression.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Big Questiions - For a Successful Lesson

A big idea question could be: “How have money and other means of commerce taken shape throughout history and across different civilizations?” In the classroom, the teacher would lead a brainstorming session by posing this question and guiding students to think about how money and bartering have changed throughout societies. As students are brainstorming, the teacher’s role is to write all of the students’ ideas on an interactive board. Once students finish suggesting ideas, select students can come up to the interactive board to organize the collection of ideas into categories. Once the categories are organized, you can have students brainstorm possible sub questions for each category. Once sub questions are identified, as a collective group the class can then decide which questions and categories they want to work on and understand better. As the teacher, it is your responsibility to encourage students to identify key points about the topic that are of interest to them personally and to begin asking deeper questions to explore their interests further as they relate to the intended learning objective. Through this process of collaboration and investigation, students begin to understand the big idea of the lesson and the larger picture - their personal world.