Reflection: Routines and Procedures Culminating Lesson: The Next Cooking Star! - Section 2: Day 1: Explore


How and why do I choose groups?

While I often let students select their own learning partners, I find that when longer, more comprehensive projects (like this one) fail, it is often due to social issues and not academic ones. Students often think it is a great idea to work with their best friends, which leads to issues with compromise, as nobody wants to hurt their friend's feelings. It is usually easier for them to be objective - and therefore more productive - when working with peers who they do not share a close friendship with, as they are less likely to walk on eggshells. (Excuse the food pun!) Consequently, I tend to select the groups myself for larger projects such as this.

Providing a quiz or other smaller assessment is a great way to provide me with the knowledge I need to create appropriate student groups. Ideally, I like to group less knowledgeable students with peers who may be able to take the lead and support them with the scientific concepts. This ensures that each group has a equal chance of success. However, I am also careful to consider social dynamics. For example, I don't want to group students who possess stronger "leadership skills" with those who tend to let others do all of the work, because it will result in an unfair workload. I also don't want to group students who may not get along or who may not work together productively. There is a lot that goes into selecting groups for large projects, and while it seems difficult to manage, it really does result in a batter opportunity for success for all students.

  Group Selection
  Routines and Procedures: Group Selection
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Culminating Lesson: The Next Cooking Star!

Unit 7: Chemistry and Cooking
Lesson 12 of 12

Objective: SWBAT create a video that discusses how concepts of chemistry relate to the preparation of a meal.

Big Idea: Students have spent a great deal of time learning about the chemistry of cooking. This 2 week, project-based lesson will serve as a culminating activity which will allow students to show what they know.

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