Reflection: Staircase of Complexity Of Moths and Sloths - Section 3: Close Reading


In reflecting on this lesson, I realize that I chose to be more explicit about the 3 levels of text-dependent questions in this particular lesson because it was so fresh in my mind after a PD led by my colleague Elizabeth Mora.  A big part of getting the most out of professional development sessions is to work to implement those new strategies into a lesson or activity and "make it your own".  This is often missing from PDs when we are asked to simply sit and listen or go through the motions of a strategy as the presenter's faux students.  In these cases, even if the strategy is terrific, it can remain just an experience as a student if it doesn't make the transition to helping the teacher develop as a professional.  

I think in this case, I knew that I had an upcoming lesson that involved text-dependent questioning, and this strategy arrived at just the right time to easily integrate it into my lesson planning.  In reflection, I realize that I could use this strategy of "leveling up" in complexity for all the reading assignments throughout my curriculum.  Even though I already do this to some extent, it seems like a more regular focus on this strategy would help my students approach text-dependent questions more strategically in all their classes, thereby closing the circle of collegial professional development as the original presenter sees their students develop in a skill because it is reinforced in other classes. 

It's a shame that few PDs specifically set aside time for teachers to integrate a new strategy or perspective into existing lessons, but it seems to me like a true "best practice" would be to make some time to do some lesson planning or adjustments when a new strategy is fresh in your mind.

  How can PD's better lead to Professional Development?
  Staircase of Complexity: How can PD's better lead to Professional Development?
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Of Moths and Sloths

Unit 3: Ecology
Lesson 5 of 8

Objective: Students will be able to apply information from a scientific text in order to categorize different types of symbiotic relationships.

Big Idea: Symbiotic relationships are complex and often involve more than two organisms

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