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Understanding by Design

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Presentation on theme: "Understanding by Design"— Presentation transcript:

1 Understanding by Design
the ‘big ideas’ of UbD

2 You’ve got to go below the surface...
The biggest thing to remember is that….

3 to uncover the really ‘big ideas.’
The Backward Design model provides a practical framework for designing curriculum, instruction and assessment to make student learning more likely and to ensure the really big ideas are ‘uncovered’.

4 3 Stages of (“Backward”) Design
1. Identify desired results 2. Determine acceptable evidence Earlier this week (today) you were introduced the ASCD Online Professional Development Course, “The Backward Design Process”, and asked to begin work on Lessons 1 – 4, so you are already aware that this design model includes three stages of development. 3. Plan learning experiences & instruction

5 The stages are logical but they go against habits
Why “backward”? The stages are logical but they go against habits We’re used to jumping to lesson and activity ideas - before clarifying our performance goals for students By thinking through the assessments upfront, we ensure greater alignment of our goals and means, and that teaching is focused on desired results Why “backward”? Because for most of us, this design model asks us to re-examine our curriculum development practices and to look at them in different light.

6 3 Stages of Design, elaborated
1. Identify desired results 2. Determine acceptable evidence Let’s take a closer look at Stage 1 which involves identifying the desired result of what students should know, understand and be able to do. 3. Plan learning experiences & instruction

7 Stage 1 – Identify desired results.
Key: Focus on Big ideas Enduring Understandings: What specific insights about big ideas do we want students to leave with? What essential questions will frame the teaching and learning, pointing toward key issues and ideas, and suggest meaningful and provocative inquiry into content? What should students know and be able to do? What content standards are addressed explicitly by the unit? U Q Specifically, we will focus on identifying the enduring understandings, essential questions, the knowledge and skills we want students to achieve and the content standards that will be explicitly addressed by the unit. K CS

8 Establishing Priorities
Knowledge that is worth being familiar with Worth being familiar with Important to know and do “Enduring” understanding Knowledge and skills that are important to know and do Because there is typically more content than can be reasonably addressed within the available instructional time, we are obligated to make choices and to establish curricular priorities. Lesson 3 of your ASCD Professional Development course asks you to use the framework of concentric circles as a framework for decision making in this regard. We’re going to get a head start on the process. (Wkst 4.1 Establishing Curricular Priorities) Think of your unit and with the outermost circle begin identify the knowledge that students should be familiar with. During the proposed unit, what do you want students to read, hear, view, research or otherwise encounter? Using the middle ring, sharpen your choices by specifying important knowledge (facts, concepts and principles) and skills (processes, strategies and methods). These are the “essentials” the prerequisite knowledge and skills that students need in order to successfully accomplish key performances. The smallest, innermost ring, requires us to really focus on our intellectual priorities. Here we select the enduring understandings that will anchor or unit and establish a rationale for it. Here we will consider the larger purpose for learning the targeted content. Ask yourself: What is it that I really want students to “get a hold of” and retain long after the minor details may have been forgotten. What is it that I want them to remember 5 years from now? What is it that I want them to be able to apply outside of school? You may wish to consider the prompts provided on Handout 1 to help you focus on your unit. When you’ve completed your initial brainstorming, use the filtering criteria (Wkst 4.2) to further target your possible understandings. (Support Material: Handout 1) Understandings that are enduring

9 Provocative Essential Questions
Have no one obvious right answer. Raise other important questions. Address the philosophical or conceptual foundations of a discipline. Recur naturally. Are framed to provoke and sustain student interest. In small groups, share your essential questions and consider the characteristics of essential questions. Refine your questions as appropriate.

10 3 Stages of Design: Stage 2
1. Identify desired results 2. Determine acceptable evidence Let’s move right along into Stage 2: Determining Acceptable Evidence of Understanding. 3. Plan learning experiences & instruction

11 Just because the student “knows it” …
Evidence of understanding is a greater challenge than evidence that the student knows a correct or valid answer Understanding is inferred, not seen It can only be inferred if we see evidence that the student knows why (it works) so what? (why it matters), how (to apply it) – not just knowing that specific inference What is evidence of in-depth understanding, as opposed to superficial or naïve understanding? Where should we look, and what should we look for to determine the extent of student understanding? What kinds of assessment evidence will anchor our curricular units and guide our instruction?

12 Reliability: Snapshot vs. Photo Album
We need patterns that overcome inherent measurement error Sound assessment (particularly of State Standards) requires multiple evidence over time - a photo album vs. a single snapshot. When planning to collect evidence of understanding, teachers should consider a range of assessment methods.

13 Curricular Priorities and Assessment Methods
Assessment Types Traditional quizzes and tests Paper-pencil Selected-response Constructed-response Performance tasks and projects Open-ended Complex Authentic Worth being familiar with Important to know and do “Enduring” understanding In effective assessments, we see a match between the type or format of the assessment and the achievement target it tends to measure. If the goal is for students to learn basic concepts and skills, then written tests and quizzes generally provide adequate and efficient measures. When the goal, however, is deep understanding, we need to rely on more complex assessment methods to determine if the goal has been reached.

14 3 Stages of Design: Stage 3
1. Identify desired results 2. Determine acceptable evidence Ready for Stage 3: Planning Learning Experiences and Instruction 3. Plan learning experiences & instruction

15 Stage 3 big idea: and N G A G IN G E F C T I V E
As we begin planning learning experiences and instruction, we’ll want to ensure that work is both engaging and effective in leading towards maximum achievement. Use Wkst 12.1 and 12.2 to identify conditions and criteria for engaging and effective design. Then, in a small group discussion, use Wkst 12.3 to show the relationship between engaging and effective work. (Support Materials: Handouts 4, 5 and 6)

16 Think of your obligations via W. H. E. R. E. T. O.
“Where are we headed?” (the student’s Q!) How will the student be ‘hooked’? What opportunities will there be to be equipped, and to experience and explore key ideas? What will provide opportunities to rethink, rehearse, refine and revise? How will students evaluate their work? How will the work be tailored to individual needs, interests, styles? How will the work be organized for maximal engagement and effectiveness? H E R E With clearly specified understanding targets and assessments, we can now begin to identify instructional activities and sequence to make performance success most likely. Wiggins and McTighe use the acronym WHERETO to guide teachers on where to focus their efforts. All of these elements may not be needed in each unit, but as design guidelines and self-assessment criteria, they alert us to considering students as would=be performers. Use Handout 7 to consider these elements for you unit, then discuss the considerations with a partner or small group. T O

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