Understanding by Design Highlights of the Work of Grant Wiggins and Jay McTighe by Sandy Stuart-Bayer Lees Summit High School Library Understanding by Design Backward Design focus: Clarify results and evidence of them before designing lessons.
Teaching for understanding is the goal of teaching and compatible with standardsbased curricula. UbD is a way of thinking more carefully about design, not a program. Understanding by Design Thinking like an assessor, not only an activity designer, is key to effective design. Overcoming the twin sins of aimless activity and superficial coverage. The work is only coverage or nice activity
unless focused on questions and big ideas, related to the Standards. 3 Stages of Backward Design 1. Identify desired results 2. Determine acceptable evidence Then n e h
t y l and on 3. Plan learning experiences & instruction. The Understanding Insightful use of knowledge and skill, observable in performance
Revealed via the six facets (Think Blume-See handout) Essential for maximal recall and apt transfer of content to new situations Reflective, recursive spiral Conventional linear [textbook-driven] scope and sequence is a major impediment to developing understanding. 3 Stages of Backward Design 1. Identify desired results
2. Determine acceptable evidence Then n e h t y l and on
3. Plan learning experiences & instruction. Stage 1 Identify desired results Consists of four components Content standards Understandings Essential questions Knowledge and skills
Key: Focus on Big Ideas! Some questions for identifying truly big ideas Does it have many layers and nuances, not obvious to the nave or inexperienced person? Does it yield optimal depth and breadth of insight into the subject? Do you have to dig deep to really understand its meanings and implications even if you
have a surface grasp of it? Some questions for identifying truly big ideas cont. Is it (therefore) prone to misunderstanding as well as disagreement? Are you likely to change your mind about its meaning and importance over a lifetime? Does it reflect the core ideas as judged by experts?
The Big Ideas To determine the Big Ideas for your unit or course, ask yourself Why? So what? What is the moral of the story? How is _____ applied in the world beyond the classroom? What couldnt we do if we didnt understand _____? Avoid truisms, facts, definitions!
Example: Bill of Rights Redux Content Standards Understandings (The Big Ideas) Students will understand that: Essential questions Are arguable-and important to argue about. Are at the heart of the subject. Recur--and should recur--in professional work, adult life, as well as in the classroom inquiry. Raise more questions-provoking and
sustaining engaged inquiry. Often raise important conceptual or philosophical issues. Can provide purpose for learning. Essential vs. leading Qs Essential Asked to be argued Designed to uncover new ideas, views, lines of
argument Set up inquiry, heading to new understandings. Leading Asked as a reminder, to prompt recall Designed to cover knowledge Point to a single,
straightforward fact-a rhetorical question Tips for Using Essential Qs use E.Q.s to organize programs, courses, and units of study. less is more edit to make them kid friendly post the questions Knowledge and Skill Students will know
Students will be able to Example: Bill of Rights 3 Stages of Backward Design 1. Identify desired results 2. Determine acceptable evidence Then n e h
t y l and on 3. Plan learning experiences & instruction. Stage 2 - Assessment Evidence What are key complex performance tasks indicative of understanding?
What other evidence will be collected to build the case for understanding, knowledge, and skill. How will students self-assess? Stage 2 is the essence of backward design & alignment Measure what we value; value and act on what we measure. Link assessment types to curricular priorities
authentic Worth being Familiar with Important to know& do Big Ideas Worth understanding 2 Questions for a practical test
of performance tasks: 1. Could the performance be accomplished (or the test be passed) without in-depth understanding? 2. Could the specific performance be poor, but the student still understand the ideas in question? The goal is to answer NO to both! Scenarios for Authentic Tasks Build assessments anchored in authentic
tasks using GRASPS: G-What is the Goal in the scenario? R-What is the Role? A-Who is the Audience? S-What is your Situation (context)? P-What is the Performance challenge? S-By what Standards will work be judged in the scenario? Example: Bill of Rights Redux Lees Summit High School Library: Bill o
f Rights Redux Example performance task as a Webquest. Key Criteria and Other Evidence, including self-assessment 3 Stages of Backward Design 1. Identify desired results 2. Determine acceptable evidence Then
n e h t y l and on 3. Plan learning experiences & instruction.
Stage 3-Plan learning experience and instruction A focus on engaging and effective learning, designed in What learning experiences and instruction will promote the desired understanding, knowledge and skill? How will you best promote the deepening of insight and interest? How will you prepare students for the performance(s)?
Organize by W.H.E.R.E. W = Where are we headed? and why? (from the students perspective) H = How will the student be hooked? E = What opportunities will there be to be equipped and explore key ideas. R = How will we provide opportunities to rethink, rehearse, refine and revise? E = How will students evaluate (so as to improve) their own performance?
For More Information Wiggins, Grant & McTighe, Jay. Understanding by Design. New York: Prentice Hall. 2000. McKenzie, Jamie. Learning to Question, to Wonder, to Learn. New York: Linworth Publishing.2004.
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