Curriculum by Design. Aligned Unit Plans based on Desired Student Understanding. Teaching without Design. Suitcase Curriculum & Isolated Curriculum.
Curriculum by Design Aligned Unit Plans based on Desired Student Understanding
Teaching without Design Suitcase Curriculum & Isolated Curriculum A teacher moves to a new school or to a new subject or grade level, then unpacks and teaches the same units from the previous school, subject or grade level. A new teacher arrives in a classroom, is handed a textbook or general guidebook and left to teach. The teacher begins to teach what he or she knows in the way he or she was taught. Often, there is no coordination or help other teachers or administrators.
Teaching without Design The Apple Event: A Familiar Problem Activity-oriented, theme-based tasks with interdisciplinary connections, but what are the enduring understandings? What is being “uncovered”? Do the students understand the learning targets? What evidence reflects worthwhile content standards? What understandings will emerge and what will endure? Examples: Harvest Celebrations, Holiday Pageants, Field Trips
Curriculum by Design Includes Backward Planned UbD Units Articulated Units Curriculum Maps, a school-wide timeline of curriculum units Standards and Benchmarks, defined set of knowledge and skills linked to units on curriculum map. Shared Database of Maps and Units - for example, Atlas Rubicon, an online database used to track curriculum maps and units. • Understanding by Design (UbD) - a systematic method used to develop curriculum units. • Identify desired results • Determine Acceptable Evidence • Plan Learning Experiences and Instruction
Planned UbD Units Backward Planning Unit Design Unit = Short for a “unit of study”. Units represent a coherent chunk of work in courses or strands, across days or weeks. An example is a unit on natural habitats and adaptation that falls under the 3rd grade science.
Planned UbD Units Define the Destination Backward Planning Curriculum should lay out the most effective ways of achieving specific results. The best designs derive backward from the learnings sought.
Planned UbD Stages • Backward Planning • Stage 1: Identify Desired Results • Stage 2: Determine Acceptable Evidence • Stage 3: Plan Learning Experiences and Instruction
UbD Stage 1 • Stage 1 Unit Plan: Identify Desired Results • What is worthy and requiring of understanding? • What are enduring understandings and essential questions? • What should students understand by design? • Is the focus apt and rigorous? • What is feasible and appropriate allocation of time, given overall priorities? • What will users need to know to judge the unit’s value and usefulness to them?
UbD Stage 1 Is It Worth Knowing? Will Students “Uncover” Knowledge? Guiding Questions Example Overarching questions: What does it mean to lead a healthy life? What is wellness? During the unit students will ask and find answers to: (1) What is healthy eating? (2) What is a balanced diet? • Enduring Understanding Example • Overarching understanding: Elements of “wellness” include healthy habits, nutrition/diet, exercise, mental health • At the end of the unit, students will understand (1) that a balanced diet contributes to optimal health and “healthy” living, and (2) the elements of good nutrition by analyzing the nutritional value of menus and planning a balanced diet.
UbD Stage 1 • Understanding checkpoint: • What is an enduring understanding in a unit you are or will teach? • Are you using guiding questions to uncover knowledge? What are the questions?
UbD Stage 2 • Stage 2: Determine Acceptable Evidence • What is evidence of understanding? • What fits within the school’s continuum of assessment types? Does it assess the 6 facets of understanding? • Is the assessment valid, reliable, sufficient, authentic, feasible, student friendly? • Is the unit anchored in credible and educationally vital evidence of the desired understandings? • Is the assessment sound? Are rubrics developed and available? • What will users need and need to know for assessment?
UbD Stage 2 Stage 2: Assessment Evidence • 6 Facets of Understanding • Can explain • Can interpret • Can apply • Have perspective • Can empathize • Have self-knowledge
UbD Stage 2 6 Facets of Understanding Assessment Example A cook explains why adding a little mustard to oil and vinegar enables them to mix. The mustard is an emulsifier. A history student provides a well-supported view of the economic and political causes of the American Revolution. • Can explain • provide thorough, supported and justifiable accounts of phenomena, fact and data
UbD Stage 2 6 Facets of Understanding Assessment Example A grandfather tells stories about the Depression to illustrate the importance of saving for a rainy day. A student shows how Gulliver’s Travels can be read as a satire on British intellectual life; it’s not just a fairy tale. • Can interpret • tell meaningful stories; offer apt translations; provide a revealing historical or personal dimension to ideas and events; make it personal or accessible through images, anecdotes, analogies and models
UbD Stage 2 6 Facets of Understanding Assessment Example A young couple uses their knowledge of economics to develop an effective financial plan for saving and investing. 7th grade students use their knowledge of statistics to accurately project next year’s costs and needs for the student-run supply store. • Can apply • effectively use and adapt what we know in diverse content
UbD Stage 2 6 Facets of Understanding Assessment Example A 10-year old girl recognizes in TV advertisements the fallacy of using popular figures to promote products. A student explains the Israeli and Palestinian arguments for and against new settlements on the Gaza Strip. • Have perspective – see and hear points of view through critical eyes and ears; see the big picture
UbD Stage 2 6 Facets of Understanding Assessment Example From a British national exam: “Romeo and Juliet, act 4. Imagine you are Juliet. Write your thought and feelings explaining why you have to take this desperate action.” A middle school student empathizes with the restrictive, constrained lifestyle of students his age in a war-torn country. • Can empathize • find value in what others might find odd, alien or implausible, perceive sensitively on the basis of prior direct experience
UbD Stage 2 6 Facets of Understanding Assessment Example A mother realized that her frustration with her daughter’s shyness is rooted in issues from her own childhood. Mindful of the fact that many students are visual learners, a teacher deliberately includes visual organizers and images. • Have self-knowledge • perceive the personal style, prejudices, projections, and habits of mind that both shape and impede our own understanding; we are aware of what we do not understanding and why understanding is so hard
UbD Stage 2 Assessment Methods Assessment Types
UbD Stage 2 • Understanding checkpoint: • Identify and describe how students will demonstrate an enduring understanding at the end of a unit. • Describe assessment methods and types of assessments used.
UbD Stage 3 • Stage 3: Plan Learning Experiences and Instruction • What learning experiences and teaching promote understanding, interest, and excellence? • Does the unit include a research-based repertoire of learning and teaching strategies? • Where is the unit going? Does it “hook” students and allow them to explore, rethink, revise, exhibit, evaluate? • Does it promoted learning and teaching to evoke desired understandings. • Is it clear, coherent, and engaging? • What will users need and need to know to teach and modify the unit?
UbD Stage 3 • Stage 3: Plan Learning Experiences and Instruction • “Note that the teacher will address the specifics of instructional planning – choices about teaching methods, sequence of lessons, and resource materials – after identifying the desired results and assessments. • Teaching is a means to an end. Having a clear goal helps us as educators to focus our planning and guide purposeful action toward the intended results.”
UbD Stage 3 • Understanding checkpoint: • Describe a lesson activity that will help students to achieve the expected understanding. How will the unit hook the students and allow them to explore, rethink, revise, exhibit, evaluate? • Are the learning experiences modified to accommodate student needs.
Articulated Units Curriculum Maps: Timelines to promote planning. promote communication and collaboration. promote an articulated curriculum. promote professionalism and teaching creativeness.
Articulated Units • Curriculum Map Sample – Timeline of Units
Articulated Units • Curriculum Map Sample – Timeline of Units • In Version 2 the curriculum was adjusted to make the curriculum more meaningful for students. They saw the articulation of knowledge across the curriculum, and they were taught basic skills that were used immediately in another subject.
Articulated Units • Standards are broad-based statements indicating what skills student must perform and specifying content to be learned. There are 3 types of standards: • Content standards answer the question, “What should students know and be able to do?” • Performance standards answer the question, “How well must students do their work?” • Design standards answer the question, “What worthy work should students encounter?” • Benchmark, associated with specific standards, specify content and skills for grade levels.
Articulated Units Standards & Benchmarks Social Studies Example Big Idea/Standard 2: Pre-Columbian Florida Grade 2: Compare the cultures of Native American tribes from various geographic regions of the United States. Big Idea/Standard 2: Pre-Columbian North America Grade 5: Compare cultural aspects of Native American tribes from different geographic regions of North America including but not limited to clothing, shelter, food, major beliefs and practices, music, art, and interactions with the environment. • Specify content and skills for each subject and at each grade level • Ensure increasingly in-depth curriculum. • The standards and benchmarks are often listed in the UbD unit Stage 1 linked to the skills and knowledge students will learn.
Articulated Units Standards & Benchmarks Curriculum Map with Benchmarks. • Standards and benchmarks reduce the gaps and overlaps among subject areas and grade levels. • Standards and benchmarks articulate units horizontally and vertically.
Articulated Units • Understanding checkpoint: • Describe how a unit you teach is articulated with other subjects at the same grade level or/and with the same subject at other grade levels.
Articulated Units Online, Shared, Transparent Atlas Rubicon http://www.rubicon.com/ Atlas Rubicon is a Database of Curriculum Maps and Unit Plans. The units can be accessed by teachers and administrators and can be made accessible for parents and students.