Reflection: Checks for Understanding Food Chains and Food Webs - Section 2: Introduce New Material


I like to make frequent checks for understanding as I teach.  I find it useful to develop an initial set of checks to ask when I plan the lesson. 

Embedding checks for understanding into the lesson allows for a timely correction of misconceptions that need to be addressed before the end of class.  And, taking the time to plan the CFUs up front is an effective way to for me to ensure that I build in formative assessments that serve the intended purpose of helping assess how well students have grasped the content.

There are many ways to check for understanding.  I like methods that require each student to somehow indicate what they know and don’t know.  I frequently use questioning, typically beginning with a lower level question and building on the 1st level question to questions that require a higher level of critical thinking.  Sometimes I will place whiteboards on the desks and have students write their responses on whiteboards.  At others, I utilize the digital remotes and  selected response questions to gain a sense of whether or not students have met the learning target for the lesson.  CFUs represent the purposeful efforts of the teacher to assess whether the learning goals established for team have been met.



  Checks for Understanding: Checking for Understanding
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Food Chains and Food Webs

Unit 1: Unit 1- Organization and Relationships
Lesson 18 of 23

Objective: Students will know what energy pyramids are and how these models are used to quantify the flow of energy through trophic levels in ecosystems.

Big Idea: Plants rule, carnivores drool!

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