# Concept-Based Curriculum and Instruction for the Thinking Classroom

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• 00:01

NARRATOR: Corwin Press presents concept-based curriculumand instruction for the Thinking Classroom,with Dr. Lynn Erickson.Dr. Lynn Erickson is an internationally recognizedpresenter and author in the areasof concept-based curriculum and instruction,and the development of higher order thinking.

• 00:22

NARRATOR [continued]: She currently lives in Washington statewith her family, and travels extensively training teachersand administrators on concept-based designsfor teaching and learning.

• 00:51

LYNN ERICKSON: 20 years ago, I realizedthat if we were going to develop the thinkingabilities of our students, then weneed to have a curriculum and instructionmodel that supports that process.Concept-based is a way of designing curriculumso that we set up an intellectual synergy,or an interactive energy, between the factualand the conceptual levels of thinking.

• 01:11

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: Two-dimensional curriculum instructionin our traditional models is focusedon what we want students to know factually, and beable to do with processes and skills.But the three-dimensional concept-based model says,yes, we will teach students facts that they need to know,and we will help them learn how to do skills and processes,but it also brings in that third dimension

• 01:33

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: of conceptual understanding.I wrote this book for three main reasons.One, I wanted to emphasize the point that teaching shouldbe as much about developing the intellectas it is about creating a fund of knowledge.Secondly, I wanted to contrast the two-dimensionaltraditional, coverage-centered model of curriculumwith a three-dimensional, concept-based model that really

• 01:57

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: develops the intellect of students.And third, I wanted to provide educatorswith some specific strategies and background information,so that they could raise the academic achievementlevel of all of their students.In the Thinking Classroom, we'll lookat the use of a conceptual lens, the integration of thinking,

• 02:18

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: the transfer of learning, and the powerof cooperative learning in a classroom.Before we go too far into concept-based curriculumand instruction, let's take a lookat the power of a conceptual lens.If I were going to have my students doa unit on our nation, as a fact-based teacher,

• 02:39

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: I might think right away about factsthey could learn about our government,about the geography of our nation,or many other topics that are fact-based.But a concept-based, three-dimensional teacherlooks at lenses, conceptual lenses,that they could use to engage students thinking at a higherlevel when they study the facts about our nation.

• 03:02

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: Some conceptual lenses that a teacher might choose to useare the conceptual lens of change, the conceptual lensof influence, the conceptual lens of identity,or perhaps even the conceptual lens of complexity.A concept-based teacher helps the students draw outgeneralizations, sometimes called enduring or essential

• 03:24

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: understandings, that students can take and applyto the study of other nations.So what we're doing with a concept-based modeland with a conceptual lens, is helping a studentform patterns and connections between the factsand those ideas that they can transfer,through time, across cultures, and across other situations.

• 03:44

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: The conceptual lens is a tool that a teacheruses to help students rise above the fact-based,and transfer information to other situations.So the conceptual lens helps studentssee patterns and connections between the facts they'restudying, such as about our nation,and apply those facts at a conceptual level

• 04:05

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: to other nations throughout history.Let's visit Alyssa Smith's second gradeclass in Round Rock, Texas, and seehow she uses the conceptual lens of systemwith the study of plants.Notice, also, that Alyssa uses cooperative group learning.This is another powerful tool to allow studentsto develop disciplinary language,

• 04:27

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: and to learn how to work and think together.Cooperative group work benefits students at all grade levels,from elementary through secondary schools.

• 04:37

ALYSSA SMITH: For today's lesson,each group has been assigned a different environment.And in your groups, I want you to talkabout the needs of plants that live in your assignedenvironment.Then I'd like you to draw a plant thatcould live in your environment, label the partsand write how each part helps the plantto have its basic needs met, and then I'd

• 04:59

ALYSSA SMITH [continued]: like you to name your plant.An example of a conceptual lens is systems.And so in our class we've been learning about plants.We learned all about the facts-- you know,the parts of the plant, and their job.And so today, I asked them to think conceptuallyabout systems, and how does the system of a plant

• 05:19

ALYSSA SMITH [continued]: have its basic needs met.And so each group was required to drawa plant that could live in an assigned environment,and have its needs met.And so they really had to take the facts that they'velearned about each different environment, and put themtogether to create a new plant.It's really important that kids can understand concepts,

• 05:40

ALYSSA SMITH [continued]: and that they can relate the concepts with other conceptsthat they learned.For example, we learned about animal systems.Today, they could apply what they had learned about animalsto plants and systems-- and that animals have adaptationsthat allow them to have their needs met, just like plants do.And so my kids get so excited when

• 06:01

ALYSSA SMITH [continued]: they can make the connections between things that they havelearned previously, and things that they're currentlyworking on.Remember when we learned about animals and adaptations?

• 06:11

ALL: Yeah.Who can give me an example of an animal and its adaptations?Frompton.

• 06:18

STUDENT: Ducks, they have a shallow beakto scoop up worms from the dirt, and scoop uplittle tiny pieces of algae and minnows from the water.

• 06:28

ALYSSA SMITH: Today's essential questionsare-- what features do plants havethat allow them to survive in their environment?What is a plant system?How do the parts of your plant meet its basic needs--roots, leaf type, stem type, flower color, and fruit?How does your plant adapt to meet its basic needs

• 06:50

ALYSSA SMITH [continued]: in its environment?And what would happen to your plant's systemif it did not have one of its essential parts?

• 06:56

STUDENT: We don't need too much sunlight,because it's going to be short, right?

• 06:59

STUDENT: Yeah.

• 07:01

STUDENT: Are we doing the upside-down [INAUDIBLE] idea?

• 07:04

STUDENT: Yeah.

• 07:05

STUDENT: It's kind of like a desert plant, like a cactus.Stings like a cactus.The turkey feet?Does it sting? [INAUDIBLE][INTERPOSING VOICES]

• 07:22

STUDENT: Everybody is so [INAUDIBLE].

• 07:28

STUDENT: What features do plants havethat allow them to survive in their environment?

• 07:33

STUDENT: Well, we already wrote it down here.They don't need lots of water.

• 07:42

STUDENT: Don't need water--

• 07:44

STUDENT: OK, they need to have roots.

• 07:48

STUDENT: Yeah, they need to have short roots.

• 07:51

STUDENT: We named our plant the Venus lilytrap, because it has lilies, and a Venus fly trap on it.A Venus fly trap has a scent for flies, so when a fly comes by,it can eat it.But instead of flies, we made the Venus lily trap

• 08:14

STUDENT [continued]: have the scent of algae to attract fish.Once a fish comes by, the Venus lily trap will gobble it.

• 08:24

ALYSSA SMITH: The value of havingthe kids work in cooperative groupsis so that they can each bring forth their thinking,and the kids can feed off of each other.One kid might have a thought that another student didn'tthink of.And so through that community buildingof talking and thinking together,it really raises the level of thinking.

• 08:46

ALYSSA SMITH [continued]: They can go beyond just the factual,and, oh, I know this about a plant,and to really think about the concept of what is the systemneed in order to be living in an environment.

• 08:59

LYNN ERICKSON:This teacher used the conceptual lens of systemwhen she had her students work with the topic of plants.But teachers can change the conceptual lensto differentiate instruction for students.She could've used the conceptual lens of characteristics,or she could've used the conceptual lens of structureand function, and still be talking about plants.

• 09:22

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: We need thinking teachers for thinking students.A concept-based model of curriculum and instructiondoes not leave thinking to chance.It requires thinking teachers and thinking students.

• 09:49

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: Let's talk about the structure of knowledge.All disciplines have a conceptual structure,but sometimes we haven't made the bestuse of that in our teaching.So in this segment, let's talk about how knowledgeis structured, and let me explain each component.First, we have the factual level,which we're all very familiar with.

• 10:10

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: And those facts are framed by topics.The topics and facts are what a two-dimensional teacherspends most of their time covering.But when you have so much informationthat knowledge is expanding exponentially,then you have to rise to a higher level of abstractionto organize all of those topics and facts.

• 10:31

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: We can't teach it all anymore.So the concepts become extremely important.Concepts are timeless, they're universal, they're abstract,they have many different examples,and so we can use them to organizeour topic-based curriculum.Concepts are mental constructs.

• 10:52

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: There are many different types of concepts,and we'll look at some of them in a moment.The next level in the structure of knowledgeare the principles and generalizations.Principles are the laws of science,the axioms of mathematics, those truths thatare the foundation of each of our disciplines.

• 11:12

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: Generalizations do not rise to the level of a principle,but they're still important, conceptual ideasthat students need to internalizing in orderto have deep understanding of a subject area.Let's take a look at a social studies examplein the structure of knowledge.If we're going to study the topic of global encounters,

• 11:35

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: the age of global encounters, from 1400 to 1750,then we could go to the next leveland think about the concepts that wecould teach through that particular unit topic.We might look at isolationism, foreign policy, world views,material benefits, and even technology.

• 11:55

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: Once we've identified what the concepts arethat we're going to be learning out of that particular topic,then we want to ask ourselves, what ideascan I help my students derive that they could transferthrough time, across cultures, and across other situations?So we might write sentences of understandingthat would transfer, but could be supported

• 12:17

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: by the factual study in the age of global encounters.We might come up with an idea, at the generalization level,that says advances in technology can facilitatethe dissemination of ideas and political thought,and can revolutionize cultural world views.This is an idea that I would want my students to understand,

• 12:38

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: and I'm creating an intellectual synergywhen I use guiding questions to take them from the factsto the understanding of these ideas that transfer.So in a concept-based, three-dimensional model,we change our paradigm-- we're no longer just teaching factsabout the age of global encountersas information to be memorized.

• 12:59

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: We're teaching about those facts,but using them as a tool to get studentsto a deeper level of understanding of not onlythe concepts, but also the conceptual ideas that they cantake and transfer, through time, and to other situations.Looking at the structure of knowledge in the examplethat I just went through, can youfigure out where the two-dimensional part

• 13:21

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: of this model is?Is the two-dimensional part just the facts, or the topicand facts, or does it include the concepts?If you said that it's just the topics and facts, thanyou're correct.So the paradigm shift is that a concept-based teacheris idea-centered.They focus on the generalizations,

• 13:41

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: they teach to the generalizations,and the paradigm shift is that they're nowgoing to use their facts not as an end point,but as a tool to develop deep understandingof the conceptual ideas that transfer.Let's talk a little bit more about concepts.Concepts come at different levelsof generality abstractness and complexity.

• 14:02

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: In the graphic, you'll notice that some concepts in scienceare called macroconcepts, because they transfer broadlyacross different types of sciences.In fact, systems change and ordercould be taught in almost any discipline.Below the macroconcepts are more specific conceptsin the discipline of science.

• 14:23

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: We teach many microconcepts, and we add to those microconceptseach grade level as a student progresses through school.So we might start talking about animals livingin different environments in first grade.By the time they're in third grade,we're talking about organisms adaptingto changing environments.By the time students are in middle school and high school,

• 14:45

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: they're still studying about organisms,but now they're studying about the biological and cellularstructures of organisms.Jeff Hoseley is an economics teacherat Meridian High School in Meridian, Idaho.Jeff is going to work with the students on the macroand microconcepts in economics.

• 15:04

JEFF HOSELEY: Remember this wonderful slide graph?You guys love supply and demand, right?OK, so what is the organ donor market?What is it telling us, what's going on here?Miss Chavez?

• 15:15

STUDENT: When it's at zero, you get less supply,but when you charge people money for their kidneys,it's at a higher supply and less demand.

• 15:22

JEFF HOSELEY: OK, and what do we call itwhen we have that price stuck at zero?A price what?

• 15:27

STUDENT: Price level?

• 15:29

STUDENT: Price ceiling.

• 15:30

JEFF HOSELEY: Price ceiling, thank you.All right, so it's a price ceiling.And we found that price ceiling isan example of the government interfering in the market.To me it's important to learn about macroconcepts because itnot only helps the kids just understand the subject therewe're teaching, but it also helpsthem understand how that transfers to other areas.Today we talked about systems, and sothey got to see that not only do we have systems in economics,

• 15:51

JEFF HOSELEY [continued]: but you have respiratory systems,you have societal systems, you have environmental systems.So they could see that system is not just somethingthat we do first period every day,or every 8:00 AM class, it's somethingthat you see regardless whether you'rein school or later on in life.To me, the microconcept, it's the fun part.It's the passion for the teacher,and it's the part that I want to get the kids to understand.

• 16:12

JEFF HOSELEY [continued]: That shows me that they're understanding economics,that they're getting the idea what scarcityis, what supply and demand means.And it's showing that they can actuallyget some depth of knowledge, and reallyget a feel for what the content is supposed to be about.This is a market where if people need kidneys,they're going to get kidneys.And like Iana said, if we let the market-- if we

• 16:33

JEFF HOSELEY [continued]: get rid of the interference in the market,if the government interference goes away,and we pay people for their organs,more people will donate.We go for 20,000 donors to 50,000 donors.And then, if we do that also, then peoplewho think they want kidneys don't always really want them,they go and look for other things,whether it was dialysis, herbal remedies,

• 16:53

JEFF HOSELEY [continued]: some other type of things to try and fix their kidneys.And we lose this shortage that we had of 60,000, the waitinglist, and we find an equilibrium of 50,000.This is a system.This is a system for people to get kidneys.What other systems do we have out there?What are you doing right now?

• 17:13

STUDENT: School.

• 17:14

STUDENT: Learning.

• 17:14

JEFF HOSELEY: Learning.What are you doing personally, right now?

• 17:16

STUDENT: Breathing.

• 17:16

JEFF HOSELEY: Breathing.Is that a system?Do you think about it?

• 17:20

STUDENT: No.

• 17:20

JEFF HOSELEY: No.OK, so you don't have to think about it,but it's a respiratory system.So as you breathe, the oxygen comes in, goes into your blood,you do fine.You have a system where you wake up in the morning, right?

• 17:28

STUDENT: No.

• 17:28

JEFF HOSELEY: For some of you it doesn't work real wellsometimes, but it's a system.So whether it's the kidney market, or it's just breathing,or how you do things, systems go across all other things.And so when we're looking at systems,in this system specifically, what's the D stand for?

• 17:45

STUDENT: Demand.

• 17:46

JEFF HOSELEY: Demand.OK, is there a system for people who demand kidneys?Yeah, I mean because they have a process theyhave to go through it they want to get a transplant.Is there a system for the people that supply kidneys?

• 17:57

STUDENT: Yes.

• 17:58

JEFF HOSELEY: Yeah, do these systems work together?

• 18:02

STUDENT: Not always.

• 18:03

JEFF HOSELEY: Do they have to somehow depend on each other?

• 18:06

STUDENT: Yes.

• 18:07

JEFF HOSELEY: Yeah, so are they interdependent or independent?

• 18:10

STUDENT: Inter.

• 18:10

JEFF HOSELEY: Interdependent.So systems are going to be interdependent.And that's kind of how we have to look at this,that theyre are different sets of rules up here,and different things that are happening,but they have to function together for it to work.Systems and interdependence are what we call macroconcepts.Macroconcepts are big-picture concepts.

• 18:31

JEFF HOSELEY [continued]: For us, it's also like macroeconomics-- big pictureeconomics, macro meaning bigger.Within these systems, you have microconcepts--and this is the stuff that we've been studying,this is the stuff that's going to beon your end-of-course test.Well what I would like you to do is try and put thesefrom most broad, which would be our macroconcept,

• 18:51

JEFF HOSELEY [continued]: to most specific, which is a microconcept.And now, what I want you to do is at your table,I want you to look at these and say, OK,which one is the macroconcept?Which one is the big one that goes across not just economics?And then, within that, which ones are the microconceptsthat are going to go from most general to most specific?

• 19:14

STUDENT: OK, so the first one is system, probably,because it's the broad thing.It's the biggest one, it's the one that everybody has to have.

• 19:22

STUDENT: Everyone has a system.

• 19:25

STUDENT: And then, for the last one,price ceiling, because everything has to be specific,am I right?The supply and demand, we put that one third.And then free market--

• 19:45

STUDENT: Free market, it's still kind of broad,though, because it's open.And it's free, and every one can be in it.

• 19:52

JEFF HOSELEY: So Emma, what did you guys put?What was first?

• 19:57

STUDENT: First we put the system, was number one.And the second one was the free market.Number three is demand and supply.Number four and five are the equilibrium priceand equilibrium quantity.

• 20:13

JEFF HOSELEY: So those go together.

• 20:14

STUDENT: And number six is market interference.The next one is the price ceiling.And the last one is shortage.

• 20:24

JEFF HOSELEY: Price and quantity?Is there a relationship between these two?Yeah, because without your equilibrium price,you're not going to be able to get your quantity,without your quantity, you can't get your price.So these two are interdependent.What is-- how is shortage and market interference and priceceiling-- how are they interrelated?How are they interdependent?What did we just say about what the price ceiling does?

• 20:48

JEFF HOSELEY [continued]: It creates the shortage.Are there are other forms of market interferencethat the government could put in?

• 20:53

STUDENT: Price floor.

• 20:54

JEFF HOSELEY: OK, they could say that-- theycould take the opposite approach.That they know that at $30,000 we could add equilibrium,so they can say, OK, the minimum that we'regoing to give to kidney donors try and getmore people to donate is$30,000.So what I want you guys to do at your tablesto come up with three things-- sowhen governments intervene in markets, fill in the blank,fill in the blank, fill in the blank.

• 21:15

STUDENT: When governments interfere in markets, supplyand demand changes, and the ethicswould change because the market would be more regulated.

• 21:23

JEFF HOSELEY: So when governments intervenein markets, Kevin, what did you guys come up with?

• 21:26

STUDENT: Like people are going to find a wayto get it, no matter what.So they might make unethical decisions,like make a black market for it.And that could cause prices to go out of control.

• 21:35

JEFF HOSELEY: So they'll try and get it firstof all, even if the price changes.And some will be able to still get it-- but some of themaren't going to be able to get it, because the prices change.They're going to find any way possible to get it,whether it's ethical or not.

• 21:49

STUDENT: We also worried about the ethics,we thought the ethics would probablybe a little better, too, because of different policies.And then we said the competition would change in the market.

• 21:59

JEFF HOSELEY: So ethics would getbetter because of government regulation?

• 22:03

STUDENT: Yeah--

• 22:04

JEFF HOSELEY: Government intervention?

• 22:06

STUDENT: Well, the ethics within the markets would change.

• 22:10

JEFF HOSELEY: And what did you say about competition?

• 22:13

STUDENT: The competition in the market's regulated, so likemonopolies and perfect competition and stuff.We kind of put that with ethics, though.

• 22:22

STUDENT: Competition in the market would change, I think,because prices would go either up or down,because people are going to be competing with each otherfor prices-- let's say at discounts,or whoever has the lowest price, or the best price.They can throw in offers in there.Discounts to military, or elderly people, or kids even.There's always going to be a change in the competition

• 22:42

STUDENT [continued]: because of that-- whether it's intense or not intense at all.That's what I think.

• 22:47

STUDENT: Yeah, things like different storeshave different prices.

• 22:50

STUDENT: Yeah, or the other thing could be like,let's say a kidney, in fact, thereare going to be people who sell really nice, reallygood kidneys, they're honest people.But their prices are going to be higher.But there are going to be people whosell kidneys that aren't in good shape,but it's going to be lower, and peopleare going to go there more.But they need to compete.There's also the fact of government regulations--

• 23:10

STUDENT [continued]: people might not be doing the right thing,or they might not be following regulations good enough,but it's a better price, people don'trealize they're getting gypped.But that's competition, that's how it works.

• 23:20

STUDENT: So they either lower the pricesor increase the quality.

• 23:23

JEFF HOSELEY: So as you guys were talkingabout what happens when the government intervenesin the market, you're seeing sometimes it's good,and sometimes it's bad.So to tie this back to what we're going to do here,or what you're going to end up doing later on this week,is what we're going to ask you the question--should we really have a free organ market?Which is a question that doesn't necessarilyhave a right answer.

• 23:43

JEFF HOSELEY [continued]: It's a question that people are going to be opinionated on,it's going to be a question that some people are goingto feel more strongly than others about.And so there's going to be four different choices.I want to ask you to think about, right now, before--and I'm actually going to get you to stand up and move,and then I'm going to ask you to explainwhy you think this is the way it is.First option is government shouldhave complete control of the market.They decide who gets the transplants, whodoesn't get the transplants, how the whole process works.

• 24:05

JEFF HOSELEY [continued]: Second option is the government shouldhave some control over the market,they're going to regulate it some.Bottom line is you can't sell your organs.Third option-- government should have little controlover the market, the market is pretty muchgoing to run by itself.Government's going to check in every now and then.But you can sell your organs if you are so inclined.Last option will be the government

• 24:25

JEFF HOSELEY [continued]: has no control over the market, the market is truly free.It does whatever it wants.All of these have positives, all of these have negatives.What I want you to do is to think about it for a minute.And then you'll see hanging from the ceiling,there are four numbers.Hopefully we can get to them-- two, four, one, and three.

• 24:46

JEFF HOSELEY [continued]: I want you to go to the number that best representswhere you feel like you fit.On your mark, get set, go.

• 24:54

STUDENT: Because we have people whoare on waiting lists, and not getting their organs.Well, if you pay people, they will get their organs.

• 25:00

JEFF HOSELEY: So the result of getting their organs,that outweighs the danger that mighthappen if we're selling organs.

• 25:05

STUDENT: Yeah, if it's in a controlled area.

• 25:08

JEFF HOSELEY: This is your essay for the semester,or for the quarter.And so you're going to have to tellwhy your approach is the right approach.Understand, there's no wrong answer here, as longas you support what you're saying,and we'll tie back the ethics pieces from last time.The first generalization, the level one generalizationwe used, had to deal with governments affecting markets.And so we said, OK, so the government is involvedin our lives, seniors understand this.And when we looked at the further, I said, OK,

• 25:29

JEFF HOSELEY [continued]: but if they do affect markets, how do they affect markets?So I put on the board, governments intervenein markets, and I left it blank for what'sgoing to happen when they do that.And so the kids had to think about,if governments are affecting markets, how are theyaffecting markets?Some kids looked at it from a positive standpoint,they're helping people, and they're making things better.Some of them looked at a negative standpoint,so they're going to tax before, or couldinterfere with the market and make it less efficient.

• 25:51

JEFF HOSELEY [continued]: So the kids, not only did they take itjust a general level one generalization, justbroad term-- government affects markets.And then they got to look deeper into itand not only see the positive, but alsosee the negative actions of what would take place.

• 26:03

LYNN ERICKSON: In order to understandthe conceptual level, we need to havedifferent types of questions.We call these guiding questions, sometimespeople call them essential questions.But I like to use three different kinds.Let's listen in as a high school chemistry teacheruses different types of questionsto guide students to an essential understanding.

• 26:25

TANYA ELMER: So the purpose of todayis to take and wrap up and synthesize everythingthat we've talked about for approximately the last 10weeks about equilibrium, and about spontaneity.I use different kinds of questioning strategiesin my classroom to one, glean different kinds of information,but have students look at all aspects of a concept.

• 26:47

TANYA ELMER [continued]: The first type of question that I use is a factual question.Factual questions draw out the facts and the basic knowledgethat they would need to know about a particular conceptor lens.Conceptual questions I use to get moreat the basic concept behind the facts, so the overall big idea.If I'm looking for students to look

• 27:09

TANYA ELMER [continued]: at all the different perspectives behind a concept,I use provocative questions, askingthem to compare or debate a topic, just to give theman idea to look at all facets of a concept.The benefits of concept-based instruction for my studentsis it helps them to be higher-level thinkers.

• 27:30

TANYA ELMER [continued]: You can teach students facts and ask them factual questions,but until they understand the broad underlying conceptsof a topic, they can't do anything with the knowledge.They can know something, but the power of knowledgeis in the application of the knowledge,and understanding the underpinningsof that knowledge, in terms of the concepts.

• 27:50

TANYA ELMER [continued]: And I think that you foster lifelong learningby teaching students how to be able to apply their knowledge,not just know something.We want to synthesize this and process this,so you understand that, yes, we talked about the math,we've talked about the constants,we've done thousands of problems--but that there's a big overwhelming set of concepts

• 28:12

TANYA ELMER [continued]: that govern this.And we can generally describe equilibrium or spontaneityso that if I were to go to talk to somebody on Mars,they would be able to understand it.So that's your job today.So the first question I want to askyou is, what does equilibrium actually mean?

• 28:30

STUDENT: When the rate of the forward reactionis equal to the rate of the reverse.

• 28:34

TANYA ELMER: Absolutely.Can we actually expand that definitionto cover not just the rate of the forwardand the rate of the reverse, but other things thatcan establish equilibrium?

• 28:46

STUDENT: It's when you have two parts of the system,and no part is changing faster than another.

• 28:54

TANYA ELMER: Absolutely.You can have economic equilibrium,to where your economy is not necessarilygrowing faster than you have it declining.So it would be at a dead equilibrium.You can have equilibrium on a teeter-totter.So I would like to kind of wrap this up,and get you to think about what we can generally

• 29:16

TANYA ELMER [continued]: say about equilibrium and spontaneityand their connection.But what I really want to know iswhat does it mean to be spontaneous?So Danny, what does it mean, just generally speaking,to be spontaneous?

• 29:30

STUDENT: It's spontaneous when there'sno work needed to produce a reaction?

• 29:34

TANYA ELMER: Absolutely.There's no work needed to make a reaction go in one direction,absolutely.We can also apply spontaneity to everything else in life,can't we?OK, Sam, give me another example of just being spontaneous,or spontaneity.

• 29:49

STUDENT: Spontaneously, I have to wake up every morningand come to school.

• 29:52

TANYA ELMER: Absolutely.So do you guys see that part of chemistry--we talk all about this idea of the math,and we talk about all the conceptsbehind how molecules move, and breaking bonds,forming bonds, heat, disorder and all that-- butdo you guys see that it actually really ties into what we know,just on a general basis, about equilibrium and spontaneity?

• 30:16

TANYA ELMER [continued]: Here's what I'd like you guys to think about,and I'm going to allow you to be in groups for a secondto talk about this.And then we're going to report back on this thought.I would like you to decide, in one sentence,I want you tell me-- we or I understand that equilibrium,

• 30:37

TANYA ELMER [continued]: and then tell me, generally speaking,we understand that equilibrium generally means,or what kind of big statement can youmake about it that's general, universal, time-tested--which means it's never going to change.Like in 2503, equilibrium is going to mean the same thing.

• 31:01

TANYA ELMER [continued]: But it needs to apply to chemistry class.I'd also like you, in your groups,to explain the same thing-- we understand that spontaneously,or spontaneity, refers to this for chemistry.[INTERPOSING VOICES]

• 31:22

STUDENT: Forward and reverse, or howtwo parts of a system interact with each other,to the point where nothing overall will change.

• 31:33

TANYA ELMER: So, we understand--

• 31:37

STUDENT: We understand that equilibriumis when interactions have no net change in a system.

• 31:47

TANYA ELMER: Ah, I like that one.Because that implies the idea that youhave both directions going at the same time,but they're spontaneously going--you don't have to intervene.Ben, now let's go with your group's generalizationabout spontaneity.

• 32:08

TANYA ELMER [continued]: So we understand--

• 32:09

STUDENT: We understand that a reaction can be spontaneousif it takes no outside work in a specific direction.

• 32:21

TANYA ELMER: Outside intervention,do you want me to change that?

• 32:23

STUDENT: Intervention, sure.

• 32:24

TANYA ELMER: Intervention in a specific direction.So we understand that equilibriumis when interactions have no net change in a system,and we understand that a reaction can be spontaneousif it takes no outside intervention

• 32:46

TANYA ELMER [continued]: in a specific direction.So I'd like us to come up with one general statement wecan say that connects equilibrium and spontaneity.We know that for both equilibrium and spontaneity,we need to have no outside intervention-- exactly.

• 33:09

TANYA ELMER [continued]: So let's say, we understand that reactionscan be-- starts with the letter S,we just talked about it-- spontaneous, and establishwhat?

• 33:29

TANYA ELMER [continued]: Establish equilibrium, require no--

• 33:38

STUDENTS: Outside intervention.

• 33:39

TANYA ELMER: Outside intervention, absolutely.I want them to be able to state the full generalization, one,because I want them to be able to come upwith the generalization, I don't wantto have to feed them the generalization.I also want them to have a generalization that comes outin a logical manner, not just bullets.

• 33:60

TANYA ELMER [continued]: But I want them to be able to state it in a sentence,because when we talk about things, we don't just say,you know this.We say, I believe this, or I understandthis about this topic.It shows that they have a higher level of understandingabout the generalization.

• 34:15

LYNN ERICKSON: Guiding students to a generalizationis an inductive teaching process.We don't tell students the big idea, or the generalizationat the front of the lesson, we wantthem to derive and to discover what that understanding is.So questions become very important.Let's listen into another example,as a fifth grade teacher helps studentsunderstand an idea in mathematics.

• 34:38

MARY ELLEN FRICK: We're going to startwith a conceptual question, does symmetry require congruency?Oh, vocabulary concept that's not up there.What is this word?

• 34:49

STUDENTS: Congruency.

• 34:50

MARY ELLEN FRICK: All right, so whatis the definition of congruency?

• 34:54

STUDENT: The definition of congruencyis that two objects have to be the same size and same shape.

• 35:01

MARY ELLEN FRICK: So now, the questionis does symmetry require congruency?

• 35:07

STUDENT: I think you need congruency for symmetry,because when we put the purple mirror on our line of symmetry,you could see it like when you looked at one side of it,the other side was exactly the same shape and size.It was like identical to the other side,which is the definition of congruency.

• 35:28

STUDENT [continued]: So you need it for symmetry.

• 35:30

MARY ELLEN FRICK: Now what you're going to dois you're going to take some think time, and come upwith the generalization.You're going to come up with the main idea of howthe concepts all fit together.You're going to share your ideas about the relationshipbetween congruency, symmetry, and reflection.

• 35:52

MARY ELLEN FRICK [continued]: You've had a chance to think about it,you've had a chance to look for objects at home,draw lines of symmetry.We've talked about the essential question,put it all together into one sentence that showsthe relationship of those concepts.

• 36:07

STUDENT: I think that symmetry is balance in an object,or that symmetry is congruency in an object.

• 36:15

STUDENT: I think that symmetry isa reflection of one side of an object, and then on the otherit's just a reflection.

• 36:27

MARY ELLEN FRICK: Does that match anythingthat you started with?Yes, no?All right-- each table needs one complete sentenceto share that I'm going to write on the board,starting with reflection.

• 36:42

STUDENT: [INAUDIBLE] on both sides, objectmust be equivalent or congruent.And if it is, then the object or shape is symmetrical.

• 36:57

STUDENT: Reflections in congruencyare important parts of symmetry.

• 37:03

STUDENT: Reflections, concurrency, and equalityare needed to make an object or shape symmetrical.

• 37:11

MARY ELLEN FRICK: So questions-- whatis the definition of transformationas itis' used in geometry?What is the definition of rotation, reflection,and translation as used in geometry?

• 37:22

STUDENT: Rotation is the turning of an object around a fixedpivot point.

• 37:29

STUDENT: In reflection, when you reflect the object,the object appears to be backward when you look at it.

• 37:37

STUDENT: What I think the definition of transformationis-- any one of the movements of rotation, reflection,or translation.

• 37:44

MARY ELLEN FRICK: What I'd like you to doright now is to think of examples that you have seen,or could you imagine, of transformationsbeing used in architecture, or art.

• 37:58

STUDENT: I think the Taj Mahal is an example of reflection,because one side is exactly like the other side.So it's sort of like symmetry, too.

• 38:08

STUDENT: I think there would be one thing in art,because origami is part of the art,and when you're making a paper figure,you would flip it over, and fold something on the other side,and flip it back over, and do something on the other side.

• 38:28

MARY ELLEN FRICK: What a great idea.I hadn't even thought of that.

• 38:30

STUDENT: That would be kind of reflection.

• 38:32

MARY ELLEN FRICK: Perfect.Now that you've had a chance to workwith some factual questions and a conceptual question,we're going to move to an additional, conceptualquestion.Why are rotations and translations of 2D objectscongruent?Now remember, what are the conceptsthat are in that question?

• 38:54

MARY ELLEN FRICK [continued]: Single-word concepts?

• 38:56

STUDENT: Translations.

• 38:58

STUDENT: Congruent.

• 38:59

MARY ELLEN FRICK: All right, so whyare translations and rotations of 2D objects congruent?You have 30 second think time.

• 39:11

STUDENT: Like rotation, all polygons--whenever they rotate, they're the exact same.At least stay the same shape and size.They look like just like how they started.

• 39:21

MARY ELLEN FRICK: You're going to come upwith your one-sentence relationship thatshows the relationship of those concepts.I'm going to give you two clues-- there'stwo generalizations that have the same idea.The vocabulary, or the concepts, usedin them is a little bit different.

• 39:42

MARY ELLEN FRICK [continued]: This is the first one.All right, so very similar ideas.It's just the vocabulary, it's justthe concepts that are a little bit different.

• 39:57

STUDENT: Rotations, reflections, and translationsmirror congruency of 2D shapes.

• 40:06

MARY ELLEN FRICK: What about the second one?Did you come up with this one?

• 40:10

STUDENT: Transformations maintaincongruency of 2D objects.

• 40:16

MARY ELLEN FRICK: What-- explain that further.What does that mean?

• 40:20

STUDENT: That means that transformations--they can prove the congruency in 2D objects.Whenever a object is rotated, reflected, or translated,

• 40:42

STUDENT [continued]: then that transformation can prove the congruency of the 2Dobject by showing that it remainsthe same through the transformation.

• 40:57

MARY ELLEN FRICK: Why are reflections,rotations, and translations called transformations,when the concept is constancy of shapes?Now we're going to listen to two or three examplesfrom the tables as to what your answer is

• 41:17

MARY ELLEN FRICK [continued]: to that essential question, to that provocative essentialquestion.

• 41:22

STUDENT: Reflections, rotations, and translationsare called transformations because they transformtheir position, but not their appearance-- they stilllook the same, but they're moved to a different spot.

• 41:39

STUDENT: A transformation is a changein the object's position, but not in its physical properties.

• 41:44

STUDENT: OK, reflections, rotation, and translationare all called transformation because they changethe object's position or direction,but they do not change the shape or size of the object.

• 41:60

LYNN ERICKSON: It's important that the generalizationsthat we're trying to work with are strong and powerful.It's also very helpful to have studentstake what I call a level one generalization, whichis written with a rather weak verb, such as affects,influences, or impacts, and help our students scaffoldtheir thinking to get a much stronger idea to think about.

• 42:23

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: The scaffolding strategy is a wonderful tool, not onlyfor helping students scaffold their generalizations, but alsofor helping teachers scaffold generalizationsin their planning.For example, if we say, advances in technologyimpact a society, that doesn't reallytell us how it impacts society.To create a level two generalization,

• 42:45

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: we flip the level one idea into a question.Well, how do advances in technology impact a society?We brainstorm the possible responses,and then our level two generalizationcould be stated as, advances in technologylead to the development of new products and materials,which can strengthen the economic infrastructureof a society.

• 43:06

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: That's really the level at which we want to teach,because these ideas are clear, they're conceptually specific,and they have a lot of power and depth.If we have students that we want to challengeto an even higher level idea, we could ask, so what?So what that advances in technology impact a society,or lead to the development of new products and materials,

• 43:29

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: which can strengthen the infrastructure?And if we talk about that, a third level idea might be,nations that have a strong economic infrastructurewield greater political power in international relations.Concept-based curriculum instructionrequires that we learn some language.For example, generalizations, guiding questions,

• 43:50

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: scaffolding thinking, and teachingfor deep understanding.Once a teacher has internalized what these terms really mean,and how they're carried out in a classroom,then they are a concept-based teacher.

• 44:11

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: Designing concept-based units requires certain components.We've learned a lot of the language involvedin concept-based curriculum, now let'slook at how we can design a concept-based unit.The unit overview web is the first step.On screen, you see an example of an interdisciplinary,integrated unit.

• 44:33

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: This interdisciplinary unit draws on different subjectareas, and identifies important concepts and topicsthat are to be covered in the unit.It's interdisciplinary because it has different subjectareas brought into the study.Notice that this unit also has a conceptual lens.So the unit title is the human body,

• 44:54

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: but we're not just studying facts about the human body,we're using the conceptual lens of systemto draw the students thinking about the topic,so they can also understand how a system functions, and cantransfer their understanding of a human body systemto another type of system when theycome to it in their curriculum.They can then understand how an environmental system operates,

• 45:16

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: or how some other kind of mechanical system operates.The second web is not an interdisciplinary web.This web isn't in intradisciplinary web.This is a chemistry web.Notice that the unit is on bonding,and the conceptual lens is structure and function.Everything that you see in italics

• 45:38

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: under those strands around that webare sub-concepts, or microconcepts.The teacher's drawn these microconceptsto write the critical, conceptual understandingsfor this unit.We call those conceptual understandings enduringunderstandings, or essential understandings.So again, an interdisciplinary unit draws on different subject

• 46:01

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: areas, bit maintains the integrityof each one of those subjects by addressing the conceptsfrom that subject area, and then writing some essential enduringunderstandings for each of the subjects broughtinto the study.Concept-based units allow the teacherto break their curriculum into manageable, instructionalsegments.They can address the critical content,

• 46:22

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: conceptual understandings, and key skillsthat the state standards require,but also know that they're doing itin an intellectually engaging way.Here's a fourth grade team planning a concept-based unit.

• 46:46

ANDREA SOLITRO: OK, in science some of our statestandards include the water cycle, natural resources.We want to build off that for a water unit?

• 46:59

ANN BARLOW: I think we've got some thingsthat we can pull concepts from.

• 47:02

ANDREA SOLITRO: Should we go into building a unit title?

• 47:04

ANN BARLOW: Let's think about the title.

• 47:06

ANDREA SOLITRO: What do you think,if we're focused on the water.

• 47:10

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Well, water is such a hot topic these days,especially where we live.

• 47:16

ANN BARLOW: And it's a universal topic,so let's think about that-- water.

• 47:20

ANDREA SOLITRO: Water everywhere--

• 47:23

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Water, water, every-- yeah.

• 47:25

ANDREA SOLITRO: Water, water everywhere.OK, but not every place has it, so what could we do from that?

• 47:32

JULIE WIESE RODRIGUEZ: Some places don't have enough.

• 47:34

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Not a drop.

• 47:35

ANN BARLOW: And they certainly don't have safe drinking water.

• 47:37

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Water, water everywhere,but not a drop to drink.

• 47:39

ANN BARLOW: I like that.

• 47:41

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: I like that, water, water everywhere--and since it's not very available here,and we have a lot of problems with drought--but not a drop to drink.

• 47:50

ANN BARLOW: I like that, because worldwide,having safe drinking water is what'simportant about the water.I think that's a good title.Let's do that.

• 47:58

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Let's go with that.

• 48:04

ANN BARLOW: OK, do you think the next thing, then,is let's think about a lens?How do we want to approach this, so that we can focus?

• 48:11

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Well, if we have not a drop to drink,that means that we've got to share it somehow.

• 48:16

ANN BARLOW: Well, let's think about what you just said.You said that the important thing about water is sharing,and if we think about what that creates--it creates interdependence among the populations thatneed to share it.So what do you think if we looked at the resource of waterthrough the lens of interdependence?

• 48:34

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Sounds good, sounds good to me.That's something we wanted the kids to know anyway,because of the way it's distributed.We want them to know that they can't just have access to it.OK, so now that we have our lens,we want to talk about some of the strands

• 48:55

JEANETTE MCINTYRE [continued]: that we're going to teach it through?

• 48:57

ANN BARLOW: Let's look at our strands, and our statestandards, and see if we can pick out some concepts thatare important in our state standards.

• 49:04

ANDREA SOLITRO: Going back to the science,we talked about definitely the water cycle.Don't you think that would be--

• 49:12

JULIE WIESE RODRIGUEZ: Water cycles.

• 49:14

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: And water's a natural resource,so we want that, too.

• 49:18

ANDREA SOLITRO: OK, so natural resources.And then that can go into other natural resources,besides water, as well.

• 49:26

ANN BARLOW: Let's use water as a case studyin the bigger concept of natural resources.Do we have other science concepts that--

• 49:38

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Ecosystems, the effect on ecosystems.

• 49:41

ANN BARLOW: Certainly that's interdependence,if we go into ecosystems.

• 49:44

ANDREA SOLITRO: That goes along with our standards, as well.

• 49:51

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: And what about environment?That's what everybody's talking about today, right?That's the buzz word.

• 49:59

ANN BARLOW: It's timely and it's universal.

• 50:01

ANDREA SOLITRO: What other strandsdo you want to think about now?

• 50:03

ANN BARLOW: You know, if I look at economics,I'm thinking that that's going to impact a lot of how we shareour natural resources and ecosystems in an environment,and how we are interdependent.Let's look at economics.

• 50:16

ANDREA SOLITRO: And even if you think of where we live,how populations have shifted so much, and the growth--so if we could teach the kids something about the agriculturethat's now shifting to an urban--

• 50:35

ANN BARLOW: As we shift to an urban society?So population shifts?In the years that I've lived in Austin,I've seen it grow from an agricultural communityaround the edges, then industrial, and now technology.We've gone agriculture, industry, technology.

• 50:56

ANDREA SOLITRO: Even in the short time I've been here,I've seen that shift, too.

• 51:00

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Well, and we want the student to understand,especially with that economics state standard,that we want them to understand the economic activitiesin Texas, and then in their world.

• 51:15

JULIE WIESE RODRIGUEZ: Maybe conservation of resources?And then from that you could think of the different placeswhere they can conserve-- at home, at school,in their neighborhood.

• 51:31

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Do another strand?Or do we want to write our generalization?

• 51:36

ANN BARLOW: Let's take a look at math.Because in order to think about the economics,we're going to have to work a little bit with the math.It's related.

• 51:48

ANDREA SOUTRO: So kind of percentages?

• 51:51

JULIE WIESE RODRIGUEZ: Statistics?

• 51:53

ANN BARLOW: Statistics-- and to our statestandards, we need to do some work with statistics.That certainly works.

• 52:02

ANDREA SOUTRO: And then with such a dramatic change,if you focus on statistics, then kids can do graphingand that definitely goes along with everythingwe want to do with that.

• 52:12

ANN BARLOW: We can look at the population shiftsand do some graphing.Certainly, I would think, that if we're talking about water,we're going to need to do some measurement.

• 52:25

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Oh that would be a fun thingto do-- to have them keep maybe a log of their waterusage each day?

• 52:34

ANN BARLOW: And after we do the measurement,we can do some comparing and more graphing.After they do their individual water use,we could figure what would the class water use look like.And then maybe even average the class,or look at how much the city would use.And if the city uses this much, whatabout nationally, and globally?And what impact would everyone cutting back a small amount

• 52:55

ANN BARLOW [continued]: make?We go back to interdependence, if we take it globally.And I think that relates back to,as the population shifts happen, the water isn't availablewhere it's needed.I've rewritten our concept web, now that we have a completed.We have our conceptual lens, and I put the numbers of our state

• 53:17

ANN BARLOW [continued]: standards so we can be sure that we're right on track.Let's take a look at what we haveto work for our enduring understandings.So our enduring understandings need

• 53:38

ANN BARLOW [continued]: to be what is it we need children to walk away with?They need to be the really timeless, universal conceptshere--

• 53:46

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: That can transfer.

• 53:47

ANN BARLOW: That can transfer to new situations.We need to be sure that we connect themin a way that shows how they're meaningfully connected, too.

• 53:56

ANDREA SOUTRO: Well, our title, but not a drop to drink,tells us that water isn't as available everywhereas we wish it would be.So it's limited.And I think we need an understanding that says that.

• 54:15

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: And because we share it,we have to be interdependent.

• 54:19

ANN BARLOW: I like that.I think that natural resources is reallythe bigger concept that we would put in an enduringunderstanding, even though water is our specific example.

• 54:30

ANDREA SOUTRO: So water's our case study,but natural resources is larger.

• 54:34

ANN BARLOW: So we want to talk aboutlimited natural resources.

• 54:38

JULIE WIESE RODRIGUEZ: Yeah, let's talk about that.Limited natural resources.

• 54:44

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: How do we want to say it?Lead to?Or allow us to share and--

• 54:51

ANN BARLOW: They not only allow us, I mean we have to.

• 54:54

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: We have to share.Require-- require us to share.

• 54:58

ANN BARLOW: I like the verb, require,because I think the fact that they are limited makes ita necessity.It's not just that it leads to it, it has to happen.Who's going to do the sharing and cooperation?

• 55:10

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Among populations?

• 55:12

ANN BARLOW: It goes back to what wesaid in economics-- populations.

• 55:16

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Among different populations--we have to different.That's where the interdependence comes in.

• 55:24

ANN BARLOW: Different populations.I think this is great, because let's takea look at the concepts we have, and thensee how we've connected them with a verb to put togetherhow they're important.So our concepts are-- natural resources, sharingand incorporation, and I think we have a concept here

• 55:47

ANN BARLOW [continued]: to look at, what are different populations?And the verb, require, is fairly specific.I believe we have a good generalization here.It's timeless, it's universal, it's important, it's abstract.Would you all like to move on to a second generalization?[INTERPOSING VOICES]

• 56:08

ANDREA SOUTRO: Let's choose another strand.To build off of populations, we could do economics.

• 56:16

ANN BARLOW: So, we're looking at population shifts--

• 56:20

ANDREA SOUTRO: With how water gets go people.

• 56:23

ANN BARLOW: I guess the way we distribute water.When we have population shifting,then they're condensing-- so it hasto impact the water distribution.

• 56:33

JULIE WIESE RODRIGUEZ: And the sharing-- the distributionis the sharing.

• 56:36

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Are we going to talkabout how they move in the generalization?Going from--

• 56:42

ANN BARLOW: Agriculture to industry?Are population shifts caused by the move from agricultureto industry?

• 56:49

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: I don't know how I want to say that.

• 56:52

ANDREA SOUTRO: We can say impact,and then we say caused by.

• 56:55

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Impact, order, distribution.

• 56:57

ANDREA SOUTRO: We might want something stronger.

• 56:59

ANN BARLOW: I think you're right.Let's get it on paper, with impact.And then think about how to make it stronger.

• 57:04

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: All right, let's write that then--population shifts impact--

• 57:11

ANN BARLOW: I'll just underline this to remind usthat we're not really specific enough yet.Population shifts impact--

• 57:17

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Water distribution.

• 57:20

ANDREA SOUTRO: Then we'll talk about that movementfrom agriculture to-- did we want to say urban?

• 57:28

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: I do.

• 57:29

JULIE WIESE RODRIGUEZ: I like urban.

• 57:31

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: As we move from--

• 57:34

ANN BARLOW: Possibly if we're going from agricultureto urban, what we're really talking about thenis rural to urban.It would be agriculture to industry, or rural to urban.

• 57:44

JULIE WIESE RODRIGUEZ: Rural to urban looks good.

• 57:47

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Impact water distribution as we move from--

• 57:50

ANN BARLOW: Let's look at this verb,and figure out how do these population shifts impactthe water distribution.

• 57:57

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Right, then wehave to ask ourselves the question, how do they impact?So we can move it to-- because it's a level one.We want to move it to level two.

• 58:07

ANN BARLOW: So it increases the water demand.

• 58:11

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: And it can change how we distribute it,how does it affect it.Population shifts can change--

• 58:18

ANN BARLOW: So we're going to haveto be building large water distribution systems, but--

• 58:23

ANDREA SOUTRO: Right, in order to have people get everythingthey need.

• 58:27

ANN BARLOW: So we really need to look at-- it impacts it by--

• 58:32

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Changing the availability of water?Changing the way in which water is distributed?

• 58:40

ANN BARLOW: So what if, instead of saying water distribution,we look at water demand?So population shifts increase water demand in urban areas?Population shifts from rural areasincrease water demand in urban societies?

• 59:04

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: I like it-- write it down.Write it down, because we can always change it if we need to.

• 59:10

ANN BARLOW: From rural areas increase waterdemand in urban societies?

• 59:19

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Or urban settings?

• 59:22

ANN BARLOW: Which one do you like?Is there too much meaning in societies?

• 59:25

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Yeah, let's just say urban settings,because we're moving--

• 59:29

ANN BARLOW: I think you're right-- there'stoo much implied by society-- so water demand an urban settings.

• 59:38

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: I like it.

• 59:40

ANDREA SOUTRO: Takes it up a level.

• 59:41

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Do you like it?I like that a lot, that's much stronger.

• 59:44

ANN BARLOW: And we still have roomto relate back to agriculture, industry,technology are what fuels the shift.I think we've left ourselves roomto get back to our state standards.

• 59:56

JULIE WIESE RODRIGUEZ: That's good, that works.

• 59:58

ANN BARLOW: I believe we have two.Maybe we need to look at our questions,and see how we're going to lead studentsto uncover these big ideas.

• 01:00:07

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: So we need some factual questionsto start.

• 01:00:12

• 01:00:14

JULIE WIESE RODRIGUEZ: Will our studentsknow what natural resources are?

• 01:00:17

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: We better ask that first.

• 01:00:19

ANN BARLOW: That's the most basic thing.

• 01:00:20

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: What are-- how do we even get water?Do they know that?How do we get water?

• 01:00:25

JULIE WIESE RODRIGUEZ: That's good, how do we get water?

• 01:00:29

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: How does water get to our homes?

• 01:00:31

ANN BARLOW: What is the source of our water supply?

• 01:00:33

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Oh, I like that, Ann.Let's do that.

• 01:00:37

ANDREA SOUTRO: And then maybe we lead into how we share it.Maybe once they understand where it's coming from,talk about how it's being shared.

• 01:00:44

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: How are some of the ways that we use water?

• 01:00:46

ANN BARLOW: How do we use water?Are we still talking about in this the child's home?

• 01:00:54

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: I think we can eventually build on it,but I think we should start there, don't you?

• 01:00:59

ANN BARLOW: That what they know.

• 01:01:02

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: How do we use water?What are some of the ways we use water?

• 01:01:06

ANN BARLOW: We may want to rethink this one.But water usage, how do we use water?We have factual questions, where do we need to go here?

• 01:01:14

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Now we need a higher level.Like why is it necessary to share our water?Or why is it necessary to conserve water?

• 01:01:24

ANN BARLOW: OK, let's look at our conceptsand see if we can get a conceptual question thatgets directly at one of our big concepts here.

• 01:01:32

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: We have limited natural resource.

• 01:01:34

JULIE WIESE RODRIGUEZ: Why does sharing natural resourcesrequire corporation?

• 01:01:37

ANN BARLOW: I like that.

• 01:01:40

ANDREA SOUTRO: Now why do natural resourcesrequire sharing?

• 01:01:47

ANN BARLOW: Why does the limited supply of natural resources?Because I think it's the limited that requires the--

• 01:01:52

JULIE WIESE RODRIGUEZ: Key point.

• 01:01:54

ANN BARLOW: Requires sharing and cooperation.

• 01:01:56

ANDREA SOUTRO: Requires sharing and cooperation.And that could lead to something like youwere saying about conserving water, why that's so important.

• 01:02:08

ANN BARLOW: It gets into the responsibility.It begins to get to provocative.

• 01:02:12

ANDREA SOUTRO: Because then it's not just about you,it's about others using that same natural resource.

• 01:02:18

ANN BARLOW: OK, you're talking about conservation.So let's think about responsibility.Whose is it?

• 01:02:24

ANDREA SOUTRO: I think you have to thinkon a local level of getting water to your home, and theneven broader than that.

• 01:02:32

ANN BARLOW: If we want to be provocative,let's think about it at different levels.Because different levels of conflict come in as wemove from local to national.So, who has responsibility?

• 01:02:44

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: So who's responsible for--

• 01:02:46

ANN BARLOW: Water distribution?

• 01:02:48

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: On the local--

• 01:02:49

ANN BARLOW: Are we talking about water distributionor conservation?

• 01:02:52

ANDREA SOUTRO: Probably distribution.Maybe conservation falls somewhere else, later.

• 01:02:57

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: We definitely have to address it,but right here I want to talk about--

• 01:03:00

ANN BARLOW: So we're talking about whose responsibilityis it to provide water sources.

• 01:03:04

ANDREA SOUTRO: And I think that goes backto some of our other guiding questions.Because we want the children to understandwhere their water's coming from, and thenhow it's being distributed.

• 01:03:14

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: And we have to start locally,because that's what they know.

• 01:03:18

ANN BARLOW: So do you want me to say, whose responsibility is itto distribute water?

• 01:03:22

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Locally, yes.To distribute-- is it to distribute, Ann.

• 01:03:28

ANN BARLOW: Thank you.

• 01:03:30

ANDREA SOUTRO: Locally, and then on the national level.And then if we want to take it even farther,we go for a global level.

• 01:03:38

ANN BARLOW: Well I think it's important to take it further,because it's a universal concept,so it's important globally.Especially in today's world.

• 01:03:45

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: And we know, and wecan let the kids know, too, that water certainlyis not distributed evenly globally.That can get into some--

• 01:03:60

ANN BARLOW: I think this could get provocative.I'm excited just thinking about where this could go.I believe we've reached provocative.

• 01:04:06

JULIE WIESE RODRIGUEZ: The thing Ilike about that question, whose responsibility isit to distribute water locally, nationally, globally--that's going to cause a lot of debate in the room.It will be interesting to see what they say.

• 01:04:16

ANN BARLOW: I think we're ready to takea look at our critical content.We need to talk about what we want students to know,the factual information they haveto have in order to talk about this topic.

• 01:04:29

ANDREA SOUTRO: And I think if we go back to our web,we know we want them to know about the water cycle.

• 01:04:35

ANN BARLOW: That seems basic to me.

• 01:04:36

ANDREA SOUTRO: That's linked to our questions.

• 01:04:40

JULIE WIESE RODRIGUEZ: And also maybeshared resources-- that goes backto our lens of interdependence.

• 01:04:49

ANN BARLOW: So they would need to beable to name other shared natural resources.When we talk about the environment,do we want to just-- our environmental ethics?Or just the facts about the environment to begin with?

• 01:05:08

ANDREA SOUTRO: Responsibility.

• 01:05:09

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Environmental responsibility.

• 01:05:11

ANDREA SOUTRO: How kids can be responsible.It gives us a start, but then we also wantto know where the water heads, so how it's distributed.

• 01:05:18

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: So, water distribution.

• 01:05:20

ANN BARLOW: Water distribution systems?

• 01:05:25

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: So now that we'velisted our critical content, now we have to relate that somehowto the local areas, specifically Texas.

• 01:05:36

ANN BARLOW: So that we get the factual knowledgeabout our local area.

• 01:05:40

ANDREA SOUTRO: Particularly the aquifers that are shared.

• 01:05:44

ANN BARLOW: So facts about aquifers.

• 01:05:47

ANDREA SOUTRO: I think that's really important for themto know.

• 01:05:50

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: And specifically theshared natural resources-- the Edwards Aquifer,do you want to write Edwards?

• 01:06:01

ANN BARLOW: And certainly we could use a local waterdistribution system to learn how the water distribution works.Let's move into the skills.What skills do we want our students to have?

• 01:06:14

JULIE WIESE RODRIGUEZ: Looking at the web, under math,could they do some graphing?That's definitely a skill.

• 01:06:19

ANN BARLOW: That certainly is a skill.

• 01:06:21

JULIE WIESE RODRIGUEZ: Their collectingof the data and graphing it.

• 01:06:24

ANN BARLOW: I think we'll have lotsof opportunity for graphing.

• 01:06:27

ANDREA SOUTRO: To go back to the aquifer,they might create a model.Maybe even demonstrate a system.

• 01:06:35

ANN BARLOW: Demonstrate a system would be a meaningful skill.

• 01:06:50

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Along with the graphing, analyze data.

• 01:06:54

ANN BARLOW: Analyze the data and interpret.

• 01:06:55

ANDREA SOUTRO: And we can go into to point of view,how not everybody shares the same point of view.

• 01:07:01

ANN BARLOW: So to make that a skill,it would have to be identify point of view?And hope that when we analyze data,it's before we get to the point of view,but maybe when we begin to interpret itthey would need to know that the point of the matters.

• 01:07:15

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Analyze material for point of view.

• 01:07:19

ANN BARLOW: Because they will be reading written material,as well.So analyze material?

• 01:07:23

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Yeah, let's keep it simple--analyze material.

• 01:07:26

ANN BARLOW: And I'm thinking, a lotof this data we will collect and graph,but when we begin to analyze, it maybe when we read some of the written materialthat other people have written, and thatmight be-- so analyze written material?

• 01:07:39

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Written or printed?

• 01:07:41

ANN BARLOW: Printed materials.

• 01:07:42

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Yeah, let's that.

• 01:07:43

ANN BARLOW: For point of view.It looks to me like that we have a good bit of factual content,and the important skills.I think we're ready to move on.Let's see where we are in the process.I believe we need to move on to thinking about our performance

• 01:08:03

ANN BARLOW [continued]: task, so that we can do backwards design.

• 01:08:07

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: OK, start with ourwhat, which is our topic, which is limited water resources.

• 01:08:20

ANDREA SOUTRO: And then the why.

• 01:08:23

ANN BARLOW: So we need to investigate limited waterresources.In order to understand that, we needto look at our generalizations and decidewhich one will lead to the understanding that want.

• 01:08:37

ANDREA SOUTRO: Let's go back to that limited naturalresources--

• 01:08:43

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Require sharing.

• 01:08:45

ANDREA SOUTRO: Yeah, that requiresharing and cooperation--

• 01:08:50

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Among different populations.

• 01:08:54

ANN BARLOW: I think that's our big idea.

• 01:08:56

ANDREA SOUTRO: Require sharing and cooperation.

• 01:09:06

ANN BARLOW: Well, we need to know,how will the students demonstrate that theyunderstand this enduring understanding?

• 01:09:12

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: You know, last summer, Idid that ground water to the Gulf,and we did an activity there.

• 01:09:18

ANN BARLOW: Could you describe that,so that we can look and be sure we've reallytested our generalization?

• 01:09:25

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: It was how different populations aroundthe world shared water, and how it was distributed through--each people group had a certain size sponge,and it was kind of like a relay race,where they had to pull from a common water source--

• 01:09:47

ANN BARLOW: So we have a limited natural resource.

• 01:09:49

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Right, and they had a limited amountof time in order to get that resource from their houseback from the resource, back home.And then we took it through earlyon-- like Native Americans, I think.

• 01:10:08

ANDREA SOUTRO: I was thinking it was different populationgroups.

• 01:10:11

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Different time periods.

• 01:10:12

ANN BARLOW: So population groups moving through time periods,sharing limited natural resources.

• 01:10:17

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Water CoursingThrough History-- I think that was the title.So if we could do something with that.

• 01:10:23

ANN BARLOW: So it's a simulation.As I understand what you've said,children will be involved in a simulationof using water resources by getting water with a sponge?

• 01:10:32

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Right, and they get a different sizesponge, depending on the time period.

• 01:10:38

ANN BARLOW: So it's looking at it through interdependence--it's the lens that we need.And we could measure the amount and dosome of our graphing and interpreting data.

• 01:10:47

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: There were four different time periods,that's right.And once it was collected, they were writing it down,and graphing at the same time.And then they analyzed.

• 01:10:54

ANN BARLOW: You know, if we added around five,so that there was another scenario that studentshad to create, we would know that theyunderstand the interdependence.

• 01:11:04

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: In our performance task,we have to remember that the project, that the whole pointof that scenario was that as the different people groups movethrough time, the size of the sponge that they use,depends on the amount of water that they used.So as we go through, and come up to the industrial age,

• 01:11:27

JEANETTE MCINTYRE [continued]: they're going to be using more and more water from the watersource.

• 01:11:31

ANN BARLOW: I think the task that you've just describedwould really demonstrate student understanding.I think it's a lot to write, so let's do that in detail later.Let's think about, from Wiggins and McTighe,that we've done our performance task,and we're relatively sure that it matches our big ideas.Now we need to design learning experiences

• 01:11:52

ANN BARLOW [continued]: that will lead students to success on the performancetask.

• 01:11:55

ANDREA SOUTRO: I always like to startwith brainstorming, so the student questionsand brainstorming.Maybe we could begin there.Use some examples of how we share water.

• 01:12:10

ANN BARLOW: And examples.

• 01:12:16

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: And remember, we talked beforeabout the effect on the environment,so they have to do the water log to show how much water they'reusing each day.

• 01:12:26

ANN BARLOW: That will also be a source of the collected data,so that we can use the skills.

• 01:12:30

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Right, water usage log.All right, so the next part that weneed them to understand, too, is how we get our water.So maybe they could build an aquifer.That's another opportunity for vocabulary study, aquifer.

• 01:12:50

ANN BARLOW: And if we do the right thing with the model,we can demonstrate the use of fertilizer gettinginto the aquifer, and talk about the responsibility.

• 01:12:60

JEANETTE MCINTYRE: Pesticides--

• 01:13:01

ANN BARLOW: And why we're interdependent,because someone else may take water from an aquiferthat we have polluted in another place.I think we're about done.We need to look at our scoring guide,to make sure that we can assess our performance task,and that make certain that we've namedall of our unit resources.

• 01:13:21

ANN BARLOW [continued]: And then I believe we have a meaningful unit.

• 01:13:24

LYNN ERICKSON: Lesson plans break the unit plan downinto manageable components for the teacher.The teacher decides which enduring understandingor generalization they want to address first,and that might become lesson plan number one.The lesson planner is only two pages.The first page shows the enduring understanding,the guiding questions, the critical content--

• 01:13:47

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: which is the factual knowledge studentshave to learn for that lesson-- the key skills,and the learning experiences.The teacher can do a simple copy and paste from the unit planneronto the lesson planner, instead of rewriting everything.What they'll want to do on the lesson plan for the learning

• 01:14:07

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: experiences is to expand them a little bitfrom their lesson planner, so they have more informationfor the teacher.The second page of the lesson planshows the instructional strategiesthat the teacher plans on using, the differentiationstrategies, and also leaves a placeto note materials and resources and teacher notes.

• 01:14:30

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: In addition to the unit web, this pagealso shows the unit overview, which the teachers completedat the end of their unit.They'll use this unit overview to introduce this unitto their students.There are three important things to remember and to focuson when we're designing units for instruction.One is what we want students to understand.

• 01:14:51

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: Those are the enduring understandings,or generalizations, that the teachers just shared with us.The next component that's criticalis what we want them to know.And so the teachers have planned what factual content theyare going to include in this unit.The third thing that is critical are the skillsthat they're going to be making sure

• 01:15:11

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: that students know how to use.They'll bring the critical content, the skills,and the conceptual understandingstogether, when they move on to design a performance task,and learning experiences.

• 01:15:39

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: Concept-based instruction is the heart of teaching.We have to be concerned with how our students are motivatedfor learning.We have to design lessons that aregoing to be engaging, both intellectually and emotionally.We have to adapt instructional materials thatare not concept-based.If we want to make sure that we're

• 01:15:59

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: taking students' thinking to higher level,then we can't just pick up a textbookand necessarily teach from it.We have to look at how we can adaptour instructional materials.We know that when students go into kindergarten,they love school.They love their teacher, they love going to school.But the research shows that startingabout third and fourth grade, students

• 01:16:21

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: start to lose that love of learning, that motivation.I started to think about that, and realizedthat it's not a teacher problem, it's not a student problem,it's a curriculum design problem.We actually start our students out veryconceptually engaged with their minds.Everything they're learning in preschool, kindergarten,first is a concept-- what is a flower?

• 01:16:43

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: What is an animal?What is weather?What are seasons?What is family?But starting about the third and fourth grade,we introduce factual content.And when we do that, our curriculum design,traditionally, has disengaged the conceptual levelof thinking.So I believe that if we want to keep students positivelymotivated, then we need to have a J curve.

• 01:17:06

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: We need to keep the conceptual mind engagedas we increase the factual load.If students were more intellectually and emotionallyengaged with their own conceptual mind,their personal intellect, I reallybelieve that they would be far more motivated for learningat the secondary level.A high school English teacher is going

• 01:17:26

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: to show us a concept-based lesson thatmotivates her students.

• 01:17:30

TANYA PERRY: Let's just, as a group,talk about these relationships-- whether they'repositive or negative-- and maybe, if there are conflicts,what those conflicts are, OK?The relationship between Montague and Capulet-- Montagueis Romeo's dad, Capulet is Juliet's dad.Do they have a positive or a negative relationship?

• 01:17:52

STUDENTS: Negative.

• 01:17:53

TANYA PERRY: Negative.How come?They don't like each other?The prince says, three civil brawls,bred of an airy word-- in other words, some kind of insult.We don't know who said what to whom,but we know that somebody flung an insult,and for that they've been fightingfor a very, very long time.And we're going to be talking about relationships

• 01:18:15

TANYA PERRY [continued]: and conflict resolution.And you guys are like, well, why dowe have to resolve conflicts, if it's a positive relationship?Well, hang on a sec-- this is a negative relationship,this is negative relationship, and weexpect that negative relationships aregoing to have conflict because that'swhat negative relationships do, right?But notice that most of these are positive relationships,

• 01:18:36

TANYA PERRY [continued]: and yet, you guys were still able to identify the conflict.So what you're telling me is that it'spossible for a positive relationshipto contain conflict.Is that what you're telling me?All right.Think-- give me some examples of when a positive relationship

• 01:19:02

TANYA PERRY [continued]: has conflict, and how that can strengthen the relationship.Yeah?

• 01:19:06

STUDENT: Some of my friends who aregirls, I'll see them in the hallways,and they'll be really good friends.Then, they'll start something, just dramaor talking behind each other's backs.And then they'll get over it, and they'llbe even better friends.

• 01:19:17

TANYA PERRY: So that conflict makesthe relationship stronger?Awesome.Other examples.

• 01:19:26

STUDENT: So it's like, when parents get divorces,they fight, and they never stop.Like they'll fight all the time, and argue every day, and allthis.And then, it takes years, months or days, and stuff like that,for them to finally get back to how they were when they firstmet-- back to civilized people, back to how normal people arewhen they first meet, being nice and kind and all this.

• 01:19:49

TANYA PERRY: Nice.Sandy did you have one?

• 01:19:52

STUDENT: Yeah, I was going to say little siblings.Whenever they get into a huge fight over something,like one stole the other's sandwich during lunch,and then eventually, when somebodypicks on their little sibling or older sibling,they get really mad.And they realize, oh wait, this is my sibling.I probably shouldn't be fighting about this kind of stuff.And then they get all happy and stuff,

• 01:20:13

STUDENT [continued]: and they're like best friends all over again.

• 01:20:15

TANYA PERRY: So you're talking about two different kindsof conflict-- you're talking about the conflictbetween the people in the relationship,and outside conflict.And you're saying that a lot of times, that outside conflictwill pull these two people together.All right, that's good.We've seen that relationships, whether they're good or bad,they can have conflict.We've seen that conflict can cause those relationships,

• 01:20:37

TANYA PERRY [continued]: if they're negative, to become positive,or if they're already positive, for them to get stronger.OK, a couple of minutes ago, you guys, Ihad one member from each group pull a number.That number corresponds to one of these relationship pairsup here.Your mission, my young Jedis, is to choose, according

• 01:21:01

TANYA PERRY [continued]: to the number that you have, one of the characters seekingadvice-- because we've identifiedwhat the conflict is.So they need advice.So they're writing to you, your paper, or whatever.And they're asking for advice.So your guys' job is going to be to give them that advice.

• 01:21:19

STUDENT: Well there's no real reason why they're fighting,it's just-- they were born to fight against--

• 01:21:24

STUDENT: I think it was passed down from generations.

• 01:21:27

STUDENT: It's one of the situations wherethey're fighting, but they don't why they're fighting.

• 01:21:31

STUDENT: Maybe like, if it's a subject that you feel reallystrongly on.

• 01:21:37

STUDENT: Or maybe when they're not--one that's been going on for awhile,and they're not reaching a solution.And it's just taking up too much time.

• 01:21:46

STUDENT: Have you ever had your friends where they fight,and you're like, I want you guys to stop fighting,because it's--

• 01:21:52

STUDENT: Can't really interfere in it, or else itcauses more in conflict.

• 01:21:57

STUDENT: Like it's not only affecting you,but it's affecting everyone around you.

• 01:22:02

STUDENT: Sometimes you can have benefits, and will solve--

• 01:22:06

STUDENT: I think that the only reason you should interfereis if it has something to do with you.Because if you interfere with something that isn't about you,it'll just cause more conflicts.

• 01:22:15

STUDENT: The problem with the main standardis that when it only affects you, or somebody you know,and it's affecting you.Because if you just get involved,it's going to cause more, and then just like woodadded to the fire.

• 01:22:29

STUDENT: Just kind of like, staying outof other people's business.

• 01:22:32

TANYA PERRY: You guys are now forming the generalization,the enduring understanding.That thing that is always true, nomatter what time, or what place.OK, you guys are going to tell me,I'm going to write it on the board,so we can see this enduring understanding.We should interfere in the conflicts of others when?Help me out.

• 01:22:53

STUDENT: So when it concerns you or your family.

• 01:22:56

TANYA PERRY: Good, good.Zack?

• 01:22:57

STUDENT: You should interfere whentheir mental or physical being is a great danger.

• 01:23:04

TANYA PERRY: Nice, good.

• 01:23:05

STUDENT: So like, when two people are planning somethingagainst someone, and you just happen to overhear it.You have to jump in, just to stick up for them,or protect them if anything bad's going to happen.

• 01:23:15

TANYA PERRY: OK, guys, what I am seeingfrom this whole list, the things that you shared with me,here's the enduring understanding--we should interfere in the conflicts of otherswhen somebody who can't defend themselves needs defending.That's when we step in.Does that sound about right to you guys?

• 01:23:33

LYNN ERICKSON: A fourth grade teacheris going to show us how to adapt a graphic organizer to makecertain that it reaches the conceptual level of thinkingwith her students.

• 01:23:45

JULIE WIESE RODRIGUEZ: Yesterday we read,and we came up with some key concepts from this book.So I want you to think about-- can someone summarize for mewhat we read yesterday?

• 01:23:56

STUDENT: They were having a hard time living in the internmentcamps, because they didn't have much to do.And they decided to do something like baseball,and that overcame the hardship.

• 01:24:10

JULIE WIESE RODRIGUEZ: So let's think about-- raise your handif you can talk to me about one of the key conceptsthat we learned about yesterday.And we used our graphic organizer,and we put some of those here.So who can talk to me about some of those?Julia, do you want to talk about those?

• 01:24:26

STUDENT: Well they all kind of lead together.

• 01:24:29

JULIE WIESE RODRIGUEZ: OK, so what is an example of onethat you remember?

• 01:24:33

STUDENT: Discrimination creates hardships.

• 01:24:35

JULIE WIESE RODRIGUEZ: And I want us to think about,what is the relationship between someof these key concepts in the book?Were any of them related?So I just want you to be thinking in your head.What are the important understandingsthat we can form, that we can make,based on those key concepts?How can we-- any of the relationships,between any of these key concepts,

• 01:24:56

JULIE WIESE RODRIGUEZ [continued]: how can we take those and put them together, and come upwith an enduring understanding or an important idea?People in the book, the Japanese Americans in the camp,they persevered through a hardship.Is that kind of what you're saying to me?Yeah, would you agree with that?Yeah.Could we go into the book and findexamples of how the people persevered under hardship?

• 01:25:19

JULIE WIESE RODRIGUEZ [continued]: Yeah, we could.In fact, is it kind of like a themethroughout the whole book, is how they persevered?OK, so let's talk about how some of our key conceptscan go together.And we're going to use those key conceptsto right a big idea or an important understandingabout what we've read in the book-- somethingthat we can learn, that's a relationship, that's

• 01:25:41

JULIE WIESE RODRIGUEZ [continued]: an enduring understanding.Maybe putting a couple of those key concepts together.So raise your hand if you can think of some-- howdo those concepts go together in the book?Kadesha, what are you thinking?

• 01:25:57

STUDENT: When people persevere, they overcome hardship.

• 01:26:01

JULIE WIESE RODRIGUEZ: OK, when people persevere,they overcome hardship.Good job.As you're going to look at these enduring understandings,and you're going to think about your concepts,and I want to think about how can youuse the concepts to write some enduring understandings?So important ideas that make sense with the book.

• 01:26:22

STUDENT: When people work together--

• 01:26:26

JULIE WIESE RODRIGUEZ: Together these are your words,so we understand that when people work together--

• 01:26:30

STUDENT: They make up a creative solution.

• 01:26:33

JULIE WIESE RODRIGUEZ: They make creative solutions to--

• 01:26:39

STUDENT: Solve their problem.

• 01:26:40

JULIE WIESE RODRIGUEZ: Solve problems.Could that be true in lots of situations?That can be true.Is it just in this book?No.Could we go to Uncle Jed's Barbershop and plug that in?Like, OK, here is where people worked together.

• 01:27:08

LYNN ERICKSON: Let's look at the issue of leadership.Leaders are critical to the process of good instruction.All of the research shows that principalswho are aware of what is going on in their schools,in relation to curriculum instruction,get far greater results than principalswho are disconnected from those processes.

• 01:27:29

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: A school district is a system, and all of the partshave to work together to improve instruction for students.Teachers are doing their parts, and principalsall across the world are working hardto support teachers as they learn new skills.I can't help but think that one of the best ways that we couldhelp teachers would be to give them time for planning.

• 01:27:51

LYNN ERICKSON [continued]: I applaud those principals who find time for teachersto work together at grade levels,and across grade levels, to spendtime talking about their profession.What are they teaching, why are they teaching it,and how best to teach it?

• 01:28:06

REBECCA LAVENDER: Jan, as you know,where an international baccalaureate primary yearsprogram, and an IB world school, and the IBrequires that our students learn at the conceptual level.And that they learn these concepts very deeply,and in a meaningful way that's relevant to their world

• 01:28:29

REBECCA LAVENDER [continued]: experience, and to the world.And so concept-based learning fitsright in with how we write our IB units of inquiry,and it really helps those children master some verysophisticated concepts and ideas thatmight be a little difficult, normally,for elementary-age children.

• 01:28:50

JAN RICHARDS: Well, at Laurel Mountain,we have a large population of studentswho are English language learners.And we have found that by using concepts,that we are able to transfer the knowledge and informationthat they have in their native language, thatmakes that process and that transfer

• 01:29:10

JAN RICHARDS [continued]: into English that much faster.And it gives them a sense of accomplishmentwhen they can make those connections between their homelanguage and the English language.We've also found that, with our academically advanced students,it allows us to go to higher levels,

• 01:29:31

JAN RICHARDS [continued]: to let them have that free exploration of ideasand content, and bringing that to a levelthat they didn't even know they could achieve at the time.We've also found that, with our studentswho may be struggling in a certain academic level,that that allows us to focus in on exactly which concepts are

• 01:29:55

JAN RICHARDS [continued]: the most crucial, and make connections across the contentareas where maybe they have a strength in a particular area,and we can use that strength along with the conceptsto work with the area that maybe they'rehaving a little bit more struggles with.

• 01:30:14

REBECCA LAVENDER: I'm not going to saythat it's been easy to implement concept-based instruction, onlybecause there are many challenges for teachers--although they find it very exciting and very rewardingand engaging, it takes longer to plan.They need more time working collaborativelyto really dig deeply into that concept

• 01:30:36

REBECCA LAVENDER [continued]: and provide meaningful learning experiencesto help students uncover that concept.And so that-- we really have to workhard to find time for that extra planning.

• 01:30:49

JAN RICHARDS: I think we have foundthat since our district has starteddoing some of the planning at the district level for us,that that has been a tremendous help.Because when we first started the process,we were doing this all at our campus level.And it is very important for the teachers

• 01:31:10

JAN RICHARDS [continued]: to be involved in the initial planning,because that's how you learn the process,and you understand it at a deep level yourself.But it is intense work.And so, that has been very helpful for us.And so now we can take the curriculum planning

• 01:31:30

JAN RICHARDS [continued]: that we have from the district, and workwith that to meet our students' needs.But again, the important part is to have extended periodsof time for the teachers to work,so that they can do this important work of curriculumand instruction planning.And then have the time to reflect on, how did that work?

• 01:31:54

JAN RICHARDS [continued]: What worked?What do we need to change next time?And the outcomes-- did we get the outcomethat we were looking for?And if not, what do we need to do differently next time.So I think time for planning is the crucial-- and the staffdevelopment to understand what we'retalking about when we say concept-based.

• 01:32:15

REBECCA LAVENDER: Staff developmentyou have to keep going back to.

• 01:32:18

JAN RICHARDS: Right, it's embedded.

• 01:32:20

REBECCA LAVENDER: And it's a journey, because you understandit initially, and then when you understand a little more,you realize that you didn't really understand it fullythe first time, and you need to go back to itand revisit, and share and collaborate.Do you find that your teachers are more thinkers whenthey-- this is a thinking kind of activity.

• 01:32:40

REBECCA LAVENDER [continued]: And so it's like thinking teachers, thinking classrooms--and that takes extra work, although it'sincredibly rewarding.

• 01:32:49

JAN RICHARDS: And I think that it validates teachers,and gives a real sense of professionalism.That this is a profession, and we are the professionals.This model, or using concept-based,allows teachers to explore their own thinking,and that's very rewarding for them.

• 01:33:09

REBECCA LAVENDER: One of the struggles we had, initially,was this paradigm shift that teachers needed to make,that I needed to make, from a topics-based, fact-basedcurriculum, to a concept-based curriculum.So classrooms where the teacher was just the giver of facts,and the students the memorizer of those facts-- to a classroom

• 01:33:29

REBECCA LAVENDER [continued]: where the teachers and the childrenare exploring these big ideas, and these enduring ideas,that are globally relevant and important.And that was a big shift, to go from those dinosaurs and appleunits, to concept-based units.And it has taken time, but it's been well worth it.

• 01:33:49

JAN RICHARDS: And the teachers that have made that paradigmshift on our campus are energized by the learning.And they are the teachers that are coming in and saying,wow, look at what this student thought of today.Or I would have never thought to go in this direction.And that's when it gets very exciting, when they're

• 01:34:13

JAN RICHARDS [continued]: seeing that the students are thinking of ideas,and they don't have to be the generators of all, the ideas.

• 01:34:18

REBECCA LAVENDER: You know where wesaw that beautifully this last week-- wehad student-led conferences.All week long, students were talking to their parentsand showing them their work, and the teachersgot almost emotional about listening to childrenspeak to their parents at the concept level,and say, well you understand that this concept about science

• 01:34:40

REBECCA LAVENDER [continued]: or math-- and how impressed the parents werewith the level of thinking.And the students could actually verbalize it--it wasn't some fact they were spitting back.In their own language, in their own way,they could verbalize the concept.

• 01:34:52

JAN RICHARDS: We had the same experience, and evenwith second graders.And so sometimes you think, well, thisis for upper-level students.But we saw that the students wereable to do that in second grade.And we had the same response from parents,just very impressed with their levelof knowledge and understanding.And although we have a focus on concepts,

• 01:35:16

JAN RICHARDS [continued]: that doesn't mean that we have left facts behind.And those are our tools that we learn,and that we have to know, in orderto support the concepts that we're working with.So we still have a place for facts,but it's just not what drives our instructional planning.

• 01:35:35

REBECCA LAVENDER: They are the learning tool,and I find that students actually learn the facts betterwhen they are attached to a concept,they're part of a tool to learn a concept.They hold onto those facts, and they transfer that knowledgeto other areas.

• 01:35:50

JAN RICHARDS: I think that our role as principalsis crucial in supporting concept-based instruction.One, I believe that I have to be really knowledgeable about whatconcept-based instruction, and be excited about itso that teachers can feel that excitement.

• 01:36:11

JAN RICHARDS [continued]: And then start by having those conversations, providingthe staff development, the discussion time.And we always come back to time, and whether that's justteachers beginning to understand, have dialogue, haveconversation, but then actually when we get to the planning

• 01:36:31

JAN RICHARDS [continued]: part of it, providing that time so that can happen.

• 01:36:34

REBECCA LAVENDER: We talked about that embedded staffdevelopment.Our teachers really like to go and watchin each other's classrooms, and learnfrom how other people are doing it.Any opportunity that they can to do that, that's alwaysuseful to see how somebody else is teaching to those concepts.

• 01:36:49

JAN RICHARDS: And I know whenever teachersare trying something new and taking a risk, steppinga little bit out of their comfort zone,they like to have feedback.

• 01:36:59

REBECCA LAVENDER: I think one of the reasons Ineed to be very knowledgeable about this, as well,and stay on top of my learning and keep my mind openand stimulated is that I think the teachers appreciateduring observations, and when I'm going walkthroughsin the classroom, when I can givesome very specific feedback.They're struggling to find a way to help use facts to scaffold

• 01:37:21

REBECCA LAVENDER [continued]: that learning towards the concepts, that's a place wheremaybe I can offer some feedback, and give them some ideas there.

• 01:37:29

JAN RICHARDS: You know, we have alsotalked about having posted the essential questions that you'reworking on, or how do the students know.And so when I go into a classroom, I'm looking to see,do I see those things in the classroom?Or talking to the students about what they're working on,and why are you learning this.

• 01:37:52

JAN RICHARDS [continued]: So they know that those are the kinds of things that we'regoing to be talking about and interested in.

• 01:37:59

REBECCA LAVENDER: We even-- I will let teachersknow in advance.You know, next week when I'm coming to your classrooms,I'm looking for this particular thing.And it's often tied to concept-based learning.I'm looking for those questions to be posted.Or I'm going to be asking some questions of your studentsat the conceptual level, and see if they're beginningto make those connections, and theycan explain to me what's going on.

• 01:38:19

REBECCA LAVENDER [continued]: So we give it that focus, and theyknow that it's important because thoseare the things we'll be looking for when we come and walkthrough their classrooms.One of the things we did is we bought several copies of Lynn'sbook on the Thinking Classroom, and using concept-basedin the Thinking Classroom, and several teachersworked together to do a book study.

• 01:38:40

REBECCA LAVENDER [continued]: And that's always helpful, because then as youread the book, if you're unclear on something,or you have some good ideas for how to implement, and you shareand you talk about it.But it also builds excitement across the campus-- peopleare listening to these folks talk about it,and pretty soon, everybody's reading the book.So those book studies with those kinds of booksreally help a lot.

• 01:38:59

JAN RICHARDS: Well, we have found that whenwe do book studies like that, that the teachers thenare feeling empowered.And it's not someone else telling them,this is a good idea or this is the waythat you should do this, but it'sdiscovery learning at the teacher level.And then they have a model, or a template, to use.

• 01:39:19

JAN RICHARDS [continued]: And so I agree that book studies, especiallyin small groups, seem to be very effective.I think that our teachers feel that once they get into it,and once they are feeling more comfortablewith the concept-based instruction,that they see the children being empowered in their learning.And you can't help but be excited to come

• 01:39:43

JAN RICHARDS [continued]: to work each day, and to be a part of that classroomwhen you are seeing that you have 20 something students whofeel empowered to learn, and are making connections in waysthat you didn't even think about doing.And that teachers aren't having to do all of the work--the students take on a greater responsibility

• 01:40:06

JAN RICHARDS [continued]: for their learning.And that's what we talk about a lot in education,is we want children to be responsible for their learning.And concept-based instruction is the best waythat I've ever seen for students to become responsible learners,and to be able to transfer that knowledge at really

• 01:40:26

JAN RICHARDS [continued]: high levels.

• 01:40:27

REBECCA LAVENDER: I think our teachers, too,love it as a way to organize an unwielding curriculum.It just gives them permission to teachto those big ideas, and the comfortlevel and the confidence that it will all fall in,that you don't have to cover every single, solitary thing

• 01:40:49

REBECCA LAVENDER [continued]: that those big ideas, with the facts that build into them.It just makes them feel confident that they'regetting everything in that they need to get in.

• 01:41:02

LYNN ERICKSON: Concept-based curriculum is a journey.It requires a change in mindset, as welearn new ways of teaching.It is not simply change for the sake of change,for that would just be wheel spinning.But change for the sake of our children is our job,and that we are eager to do.Enjoy your journey.I know your students will.

• 01:41:49

• 01:42:13

NARRATOR [continued]: Dr. Erickson can also be booked for additional trainingfrom the Corwin Press Speaker's Bureau.

# Concept-Based Curriculum and Instruction for the Thinking Classroom

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## Abstract

Dr. Lynn Erickson discusses the importance of concept based learning in the classroom. Erickson's goal is to train teachers to set up a curriculum that synergizes factual and conceptual levels of thinking.

Concept-Based Curriculum and Instruction for the Thinking Classroom

Dr. Lynn Erickson discusses the importance of concept based learning in the classroom. Erickson's goal is to train teachers to set up a curriculum that synergizes factual and conceptual levels of thinking.