Continuing the Common Core Conversations with the help of Burkins & Yaris

11 Sep

All credit for today’s post goes to Burkins & Yaris. Sign up for their daily blog posts pertaining to Common Core conversations here

As we transition further into the school year, consider the following:

1. Relevance of Teaching
Why does what I am choosing to teach matter? Will it support my larger goals for my students’ thinking and learning? How will this information build their knowledge?

2. Levels of Engagement
How will I plan my instruction to optimize student interest in learning, increasing the odds that students will understand and retain the information in a learning experience?

3. Quality of Thinking
Is this work cognitively challenging for all, most, some, or a few of my students?  How does this work inspire thinking and new ideas among my students?

4. Richness of Conversation
How does this lesson encourage students to collaborate with others who can extend their thinking about the topic? Does conversation lend something valuable to the thinking and learning process in this lesson?

5. Degrees of Connection
To what ideas can students connect this learning? How does this learning make learning something else easier or deeper?

It can be hard to let go of the things we teach “just because.” In teaching, time is our nemesis. With each lesson we plan, we can ask ourselves: Why am I doing this? If you don’t have an answer that offers valuable insights into the questions above, you probably need to serve your students something else.

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