Reflection: Discourse and Questioning Can You Track The Sun's Energy? - Section 5: Modeling Discussions


Even though students have a lab document that they complete, embracing the opportunity for discussion is so important. It can be easy to have students turn in their lab and move on.  In our business, there is a time crunch. I totally get it! However, taking the time for meaningful discussion even after students write written responses to questions will add a depth of understanding to your lessons that could not be reached if the lesson was simply over when students turn in their paper.  

By asking students to answer questions that make them provide evidence of their understanding, students can gain confidence in their understanding and recognize their misconceptions. In this particular lesson, it was really interesting that while students answered the lab questions correctly, there were still misconceptions that emerge when students are asked to verbally make a claim and defend it. For example, it amazed me how many students initially during this discussion had made the conclusion that carbon dioxide produces heat or that Florida must be greatly affected by the greenhouse effect because it's hotter. Without taking the time to have students discuss these misconceptions, the depth of understanding that my students would have developed would not have been as great.

Take the time for meaningful discussions that ask students to explore misconceptions and defend their understanding!

  Discussions Add Depth
  Discourse and Questioning: Discussions Add Depth
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Can You Track The Sun's Energy?

Unit 9: Weather
Lesson 1 of 7

Objective: Students will be able to track energy that circulates through earth’s systems.

Big Idea: Students use models to track the Sun's energy can take as it leaves the sun and travels through Earth's systems. Students explore with different types of surfaces, globes, flashlights, and an interactive model of the Greenhouse Effect!

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