Friday, March 28, 2014

What is a Hero?- Our CBL Big Idea

This year in the Oneco's Gifted Laboratory have been exploring what it takes to be a hero/ heroine. From the very beginning, I felt that was important that we all have a clear definition of what qualities it takes to make a hero/heroine. 

Our first step this exploration began by pulling out heroes/heroines form a variety of different genres of literature. Students identified and recorded text evidence for the different character traits of each hero/heroine using a Frayer Model.  This graphic organizer is commonly used to define words and concepts. Our Frayer Model was divided into to four sections and served as a visual representation for students for what the character: looks like, thinks, says and does. This first step was done so that we could both get to know our character and compare and contrast the information later. 

  After, we have had time to read about several different heroes/heroines we will go back through our Frayer Models using the evidence recorded to  compare and contrast these traits and generate a master list of common hero attributes. Next we created a T-Chart with our master list of the common attributes on the right and room for text evidence on the left.

  After some practice with this graphic organizer with several more books students were asked to write and prove someone to be a hero or not. 

This hero study has brought about many wonderful discussions in our laboratory this year. It has also severed as the Big Idea of our Challenge Based Learning (CBL) Challenges, which is being heroes/heroines on Oneco’s Campus.

Monday, March 24, 2014

Challenge Based Learning - Measuring Our Solution #1

I thought others might find this helpful. These activities took about an hour and half.

These activities were completed with a group of third graders in the midst of our Challenge Based Learning (CBL) Challenge: To encourage better cooperation at recess! Throughout this challenge students have participated in activities that have covered a multitude of the goals found in the Florida Framework for K-12 Gifted Learner and a variety of cross curriculum standards.

The main goal these activities will be:
Florida Framework Goal 4-C:
Use and evaluate various problem-solving methods to determine effectiveness in solving real-world problems.

1.  Why do you think it is important to measure the effectiveness of a solution or goal?
2.  Why do you think it is important to keep data while you are measuring something? 
3.  Can you create a plan to measure the solution to our recess challenge?

Two pieces of chart paper with questions in the middle for Chalk Talk
-Crayons for Chalk Talk
-Student each need their notebooks and reflection journals
-Chart paper to record

Brainstorming/Focus Activity (10-15 minutes-depending on prior knowledge):
-Pull students into a circle on the floor.
-Ball will be passed and students will take time to brainstorm and share answers to the following:
    What can be measure?
    How can it be measure?
    What tools are used to measure it? 

Chalk Talk 
(10 minutes)
-Take two pieces of chart paper each with a different question in the center.
-Place each in the center of a table. 
-Students will be broken into two groups, told to grab a colored pencil and sent to one of the tables with the chart paper. 
- Without speaking students will then respond directly on the paper to that question. Students are encourage to respond to other people's comments as well.  
-After five minutes the group switches tables and to repeat the process.
-Finally, we gather back together to discuss some of the students' responses found on each chart paper.

Question found on the pieces of chart paper:
 1.  Why do you think it is important to measure the effectiveness of a solution or goal?
2.  Why do you think it is important to keep data while you are measuring something? 

Quick Writes- (15 minutes)
10 minutes write/ 5 minutes discuss
What is measurement and why do people use it in everyday life? Share some examples.

Journal Entry Analyzing
-Students will pull out their journals entries they worked on last week.
 Last weeks prompt: What do you hope to see, hear and feel at recess after our campaign launches?
-Each student will read through his/her own entry and underline anything they believe they can collect data on. 
(Hint: You should be able to tell someone what data you will collect to measure that outcome.) 
-Students will then pair up and reread entries to make sure what is underlined can be measured. The only judgement made at this point will be is can what is underlined be measured. 
-They will then share entries in groups of three or four. These groups will then make a T-Chart with measurable outcomes on one side and how they can be measured on the other.
-Together we will consolidate the list as a whole group onto a piece chart paper using post its.
-We will review the list and discuss our options of evaluation based on time, manpower and access to information. 
-Based on that criteria we will choose at least two forms of measurement. Then develop and action plan to carry that evaluation. 

Students were then return to the Quick Writes prompt and complete their thoughts. This will serve as a reflection piece for today's lesson.  

Thiss process will be assessed using a Critical Thinking and Problem Rubric that I developed based (or modified) on the Florida Framework K-12 Gifted Learners Rubric.