Reflection: Standards Alignment Plants Secrets - Section 3: Exploration: Tending the Garden


For years, it has been a best practice for teachers to share the objective with students at the beginning of the lessons and then to reference and reflect at the end of the lesson on whether we achieved the objective. For first graders, it's important to break down the language of the objective. Since the language often comes directly from the standards, teachers must explain the verbs and often complex ideas in order for students to gain meaning from reading the objective.

This strategy includes breaking down the objective into phrases or words and dissecting it.  First, we figure out what each part means. Then, after discussing the parts, we reread the objective as a whole. The objective truly sets the purpose for the entire lesson. It's the "why" behind what we are doing throughout a lesson.

I chose this strategy in order to support learners and allow them to access the language of the standards. It also is done to summarize the lesson at the end-- did we achieve the goal we set for ourselves? Do we need additional time to achieve the objective? Objectives are truly like road maps in that sense. Here is where we are going, and the roads we take should lead to our destination.

At the beginning of the year, I find that students have little idea about what an objective is, how it guides our learning, and what the words mean. Breaking down objectives begins on Day 1, and as it is continued in every subject area throughout the course of the year, students develop deeper understandings.

I complete this type of explanation in all subjects.  Here is an example from a math lesson.

  Standards Alignment: Breaking down the objective
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Plants Secrets

Unit 5: Plants: Parts, Parents, Patterns
Lesson 9 of 12

Objective: SWBAT describe connections between parts of the plant life cycle as they determine that young plants are alike, but not identical, to their parents.

Big Idea: Shhh! Plants have secrets inside... come and see what they are...

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15 teachers like this lesson
Science, plants, pattern, seed, leaves
  40 minutes
plant secrets
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