Reflection: Rigor Maps (2 of 3) - Section 4: EXPLORE: New cartographers


Every student knows what a map is.  Right?  Maps are not simply the pictures in textbooks and the posters and walls that most students remember from elementary and middle school.  The "new cartographers" idea describes an almost revolutionary definition of maps.  Maps are essentially anything we want visualized data to be.  The article students receive contains a number of nuanced arguments. The activities in this lesson were designed to help students expand their definitions of maps in a rigorous way.  

The attached Hess cognitive rigor matrix is a document that incorporates Bloom's taxonomy in an approachable table.  I use it often for my lessons.  It can serve multiple purposes. As a rigor check, it can help to improve the quality of my questions and activities.  For all of my lessons, I want to be in the level 3 or level 4 area.  However, this may not be appropriate for each student.  Another advantage of using this matrix is that each level contains excellent differentiation strategies to meet students at many levels of ability.  It can be a great differentiation tool.  Finally, Hess' matrix can also normalize understanding of what rigor is in a classroom.  Using this matrix with co-teachers, grade teams, or departments, can dramatically improve the efficiency and quality of professional dialogue.

  Rigor: Old concepts made new
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Maps (2 of 3)

Unit 3: Environmental justice
Lesson 6 of 16

Objective: Students will be able to: 1) articulate a purpose for designing maps; 2) identify three uses for maps in a science classroom; and 3) describe the use of different kinds of maps in social justice initiatives

Big Idea: Mapmaking is an ancient tool that is making a comeback as a powerful data visualization tool. How might we apply new cartographic techniques from geographic information systems (GIS) to represent our community through a specific data lens?

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Science, visualized data
  55 minutes
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