Reflection: Checks for Understanding Test Solution Project (#2 of 5) - Section 2: Anticipatory Set ("Hook")


Teacher: "I told you that you were supposed to..."

Student: "I didn't know." or "I didn't hear that."

Teacher: "Pay better attention next time, ok?"

How commonplace might this exchange be in any given classroom? Or let alone between a parent and her child?

The key point for me is to flip the narrative and put the onus on the student(s) to articulate to me the salient points that the student should be able to express. In this way, I can determine definitively, "Did she demonstrate what she needed to know or learn?"

By framing the prompt for this project in a positive and negative perspective, I want students to explain the nature of the project by what it entails and what they don't need to concern themselves with. By making students process this aloud in groups, it also has the effect of reinforcing what many students heard and can help fill in the gaps for a student who may have missed a point here or there.

In this way, when I survey a handful of whiteboards (or those of the entire class) I can see, in black and white, what students actually think they need to do for the task. I can then surgically spot and readdress or properly clarify what was incorrect.

  But I told you!
  Checks for Understanding: But I told you!
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Test Solution Project (#2 of 5)

Unit 7: 7) Ecology ("Population Interactions")
Lesson 8 of 16

Objective: Students will design, evaluate, and refine a solution for reducing the impacts of human activities on the environment and biodiversity.

Big Idea: Natural resources are precious and finite. It is important for students to be aware of environmental issues in their own backyard and imagine feasible solutions to problems that threaten them.

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