From Unit Plan to Instruction
Instruction - Two Brains
Students who are 'analyzers' need a comprehensive whole. They grab and attach new ideas to that whole. The tend to start with the “why.” High quality Essential Questions (EQ's) and Enduring Understandings (EU's), connected to authentic and relevant outcomes are the best place to start with these types of students. Students who are 'synthesizers' start with the “what". They take little pieces and hold onto each piece like a breadcrumb trail and then synthesizes everything into a whole. These students likes to have things broken down. Content and skills are a good place to begin with these learners.
Essential Questions in the Classroom
In a unit, all content, activities and assessments should connect to the essential questions. Remembering the role of two brains in learning, we should aim to balance the EQ's with the curriculum - introducing the questions in the beginning, middle and end of the unit. Students should answer the questions in multiples was as evidence of learning, and we should expect student responses to change, evolve, grow and be revised over time. This approach meets the needs of both linear and analyzing learner brains.
Instruction - Framing the Learning
Framing The Learning is the process by which we are setting what was described in unit plan into a student facing tool. It is a series of questions to help students think about the target, why they are thinking about the target, how they are going to learn it and how they are going to know it.
by Paula Rutherford
Instruction - Learning Logs and Journals
Learning Logs and Journals can be used as a technique to help students develop the skill set for self navigation. Here the teacher can coach, model and facilitate the process. The logs can be in the form of a graphic organizers where students can document their do-now's or plan out the steps to complete their papers and projects. And, these journal can be used as evidence of critical thinking, reflection, and comprehension of the big ideas and essential questions of a unit.