I agree that the state tests are at the beginning levels. I question whether that will change. I don't see how the state can grade the type of applicational exam that the video talks about. I think it would take too long to take and then grade and cost too much. I also don't really see the state assessments going away any time soon either.Another thought I had was about getting kids to think and perform at the applicational level. In my regular math classes, and even at times in the Honors Algebra class , I see kids struggling with the lower levels of understanding of the lesson much less taking on a top-level understanding.
We enjoyed watching the video and definitely began thinking about the fact that having a college education no longer guarantees a good paying job. Our students will have to be prepared for a lifetime of continuing education and training to stay current on skills that are required as technology, society, and the economy change and evolve. As teachers, we will have to spearhead this movement to ensure our students can be flexible and have an affinity for learning, critical thinking, and problem solving in order to compete in the job market.
I, too, believe that the money required to test students at levels 4 and 5 would be too big of an expense for our state as well as many others. However, I feel our students need to be taught and tested at levels 4 and 5. My biggest concern is that, as a teacher, I will be expected to teach and assess students at levels 4 and 5 when my students have been taught and assessed at levels 1 and 2 since the beginning of Kindergarten. I somewhat feel this is already happening to teachers and students with Common Core Standards, End of Course Exams, etc.
I agree that we should have more rigor in our instruction and expectations. In order to get to the desired level we need to begin by slowly adding complexity so the students can grow without being overwhelmed. Students need to be able to use their knowledge productively and not just be able to recite information.
I agree with Daggett's comments in the short film concerning levels of learning. We do teach and test at levels 1/2 while the real world requires thinking and problem solving at levels 4/5. Furthermore, the Rigor/Relevance Framework is an acceptable model to follow for direction concerning instruction, but the question I'm left with is, how can we implement frameworks such as this if we maintain the current educational infrastructure? I think implementation of this kind requires large scale CHANGE. While we all recognize the need for it, I don't see how we can do it while still running our schools as factories based on ideas from the industrial revolution. I believe in Rigor/Relevance, but it is hard for me to see the big picture right now!?
After reading these posts it certainly reminded me why we are different at North Bay Haven/Bay Haven. We are going further than "teaching to the tests". Students will not be taking standardized tests for the rests of their lives so it is imperative that we teach them how to apply their knowledge to more than a scan-tron answer sheet. I am trying to do this by incorporating more critical and logical thinking skills into my lessons. I have found that cause and effect questions are good ways to get kids to really think critically about a topic. Not only do they have to know the subject matter, but they also have to be able to articulate it onto paper. Of course, like Daggett says, we have to have the 1s and 2s to teach the 3s, 4s, and 5s. With that said, we must be teaching kids to think for themselves instead of doing the thinking for them.
I agree that assessments like FCAT do not do as good a job of testing the higher levels of thinking. It is clear that they cannot when they are strictly Multiple Choice. I will use this Framework to develop and modify the tests and other assessments I use to make them more rigorous and I definitely want to improve relevance.
I agree with Jeanine that we need to add complexity in stages so that our students do not feel overwhelmed. Many of them have had absolutely no experience when it comes to being challenged with problems that demand such high levels of complex thinking. However, I think we can all agree that tackling these level 4 and 5 problems is a great goal. We just have to provide a lot of scaffolding until our students get to a point where they can handle these questions on their own.
I also agree testing criteria is at level one and two. The problem lies within our social norms and technology. Today's students and recent college graduates feel entitled and that everything should be given to them immediately. One way our students can get to levels four and five is through life experiences. These experiences should also include failures/lessons along the way. Think about what we had growing up and the challenges we faced just applying for college. We have to provide an atmosphere allowing our students to become intrinsically motivated to succeed at life.
I agree completely with the second video about how we are just shutting out the learning process with medication. Students are different due to technology devices that have been holding their attention over lectures in a classroom. Somehow getting them engaged and more active in the learning process is a way that could help. In response two the first and second continuum, I feel that is can be used in art quite a bit. They get knowledge of a particular technique and then apply it by creating their own work using it. solving. They also have come up with their own ideas to add to their projects which enables individual thinking. Since I teach art, this can all be a bit tough for me while trying to apply these to my classes. As compared to Math, English and Science this subject isn't always put in an important category. Another example for my class to use both could be teaching students about artwork, artists, cultures, history, and then asking them to talk about it and critique it verbally and in text form. Having students critique their own work using the their art terminology is and great way to get them to use their art knowledge in real life. Taking them to a museum and getting them to discuss works of art is a real life situation.
I definitely agree that the FCAT and other standardized tests test at levels 1 and 2, and life will test these students at levels 4 and 5. They will need problem solving skills and critical thinking skills. I wonder if the state will ever be able to afford the adjustment it would require to test these levels, even though I whole heartedly agree that the change is necessary. The article and video encourage and inspire me to continue to develop rigor and relevance in my classroom.
I like the Making Connections. It gives me lots of ideas and activities for students to apply their knowledge to the real world. Just like the RR Framework suggested, life is not just multiple choice or true/false questions but all essay questions.
I love this video, becasue it is the 100% truth. When you look in most classrooms, all you see is what pretains to that subject. When you have a teacher that tries to accomplish levels 4 and 5 the students give you the deer in the head lights look. I recently did an acctivity that started in Social Sciences, but stemed out to anything they were interested. They were completely overwhelmed! This tells me I need to do more of these type of activities. I am even going to show this video to my students to make them aware of what the head way teachers are trying to make.
A lot of people have commented on the idea of overwhelming the students, and I agree that it is essential to build upon the outdated/popular model of teaching (teaching at the levels 1 and 2)and scaffold up to the higher, more productive levels 4 and 5. This issue stands out the most to me because I can remember instances in the past where I tried to teach or test at the higher levels and my students were unable to do as I expected them to. This reminds me that kids can get used to a certain level, so it is ineffective to completely skip that level in trying to build them up. I am interested in revamping my units to include each level, with an emphasis on 4 and 5.
I agree with Daggett's comments in the video. Students should be taught at levels 4 and 5. If students are not able to apply what they learn to the real world, then what they have learned will not be put to use. As teachers, we can make a difference class by class in order to achieve rigor and relevance.
I think that rigor and relevance are important but many of our students are not use to having to use critical thinking skill to complete assignments and they find it hard. In my class, I will try introduce these skills through group problem solving activities. In my assessments I will select question and introduce them gradually so that students have the chance to become successful in answering those level 4 and 5 questions.
The problem lies in the fact that states need to standardize tests so all students are measured on the same criteria and for easy grading. Testing students on their ability to apply knowledge is hard to do with multiple choice tests. It is a new and unique challenge teaching Civics to 7th graders knowing that an end of course exam is on the horizon in the coming years. To me it seems like there are more and more tests such as this that the students will have to pass or achieve a certain level. It also seems that teachers' evaluation will depend more and more on the outcome of these tests. In spite of the fact that students and teachers will be subjected to more and more standardized testing, we teachers must do what we can to prepare the students for real life.
Something that really stuck with me throught the powerpoint was that students can do no better than the strategies they have been taught. This really made me stop and become self-aware of my own teaching strategies and reflecting how I can ensure that I am helping to move my students to that level 4-5 thinking. Even at a second grade level, I can begin to implement rigor and relevance in my teaching to help my students use real-world applications in all academic areas.
I am glad to have the opportunity to teach more than just the basics. I am excited to have the tools such as the Taxonomy verb list and relevant follow up questions to use while planning. What makes me nervous is not every school gets this information. I worry about the children out there that don't have this opportunity that our students have at North Bay Haven. What are they going to do? Every man for themselves?
I am glad that the ideas expressed are being utilized at an early age. As a parent and a teacher, I like that they are being exposed to higher order thinking at an early age. My kids, and my students will be able to think with a deeper understanding by the time they reach me in fourth grade. I like that there is open, cross curricular discussion between grade levels and feel that it will benefit the students at NBH greatly as they progress through the grades. It will simply become "their way of thinking" instead of the way they have been taught to think.
I love it when the students make connections between subjects on their own! I can really see how proud they feel in owning a deep understanding. We as teachers have such a responsibiltiy to teach our students to think for themselves rather than telling them what to think! It is interesting, though, to see how many parents don't want their children to do for themselves; they would rather do it for them. This is a real struggle at times. Using the framework to plan and assess lessons will help me to continue to encourage the kind of thinking that prepares students for the real world - the one where mom & dad don't do everything for you!
It is scary to think that word problems are only a level 2. In math students struggle with them so much that I wonder if they will ever be able to move to a level 4 and 5. I agree with several comments that children need life experience to be able to move to real world situations. The only problem is that students are not held accountable for anything today. Parents hold their hands and make everything better so the student walks away with that "I'm untouchable and entitled" attitude.
I really find the Rigor/Relevance framework to be interesting. It's so important to teach our kids so that they can apply what they learn across several subjects. If they don't think they'll use the information again they won't be as excited to learn. The Taxonomy Verb List is another great tool to have available. It will be a good way to measure and assess our own tests we give to our students.
The resources Trish gave me will be very helpful when planning lessons for both whole group and small group instruction. Teaching my students using The Rigor/Relevacne Framework will mean modeling many lessons to lead them to the thinking required in Quadrant D. After reading the handouts, watching the videos, and meeting with Trish, I know the goal ahead of me is well worth challenge. Teaching students to be real world thinkers who are capable of solving problems with unknown outcomes is a challenge. This is so much bigger than simply developing lessons with Bloom's Taxonomy. Adding Daggett to Bloom's is quite logical and I wish I would have known about this model when I first started teaching.This is what I have always wanted to do as a teacher. Now I have a model to follow and resources to guide me. It is also exciting to know I have a principal who wants me to teach utilizing The Rigor/Relevance Framework.I am nervous yet looking forward to making changes in my lessons to add more rigor and relevance.Trish made a comment that really stood out to me during our meeting. Trish told us the real world is not multiple choice. As a teacher, I know my students will be assessed by a multiple choice test, but I have to prepare them for a world with "problems with unpredictable outcomes." I know I have to a balance of all four quadrants and scaffold to teach my students in quadrants B, C, and D.
The quote that always come to mind when I watch the Dagget video is, "When will I ever use this?" I would have probably have been more receptive, especially in math and history, if I had understood why I was being taught certain things. I believe that I, among most of the nation, have forgotten the frustration we had with memorizing information for no known reason. I do my best to explain to my students why we learn certain things and how to piece all of it together for everday situations. Sometimes it is easy. Math, Social Studies, Reading are skills we use everyday for endless reasons. Others are much harder. I am getting off track. How do we make a standardized test that covers the upper levels? Are we going to create field tests where students are thrown into a situation and must use all the combined knowledge to fix the problem, like the FBI. I am all for it. I will keep looking for ways to show kids how to apply all of their knowledge to real world problems until that day comes.
As a prior 3rd grade teacher, I have an idea as to what will be waiting on my second graders next year. I'm trying to get my students there but I keep hitting bumps (level 1/2 bumps) in the road when I teach. Some of their mind sets are still in 1st grade and so are their parents. I find myself putting on the brakes a lot! I'm GRATEFULL for this FRAMEWORK. I plan to use it to help me develop better activities and assessments for my students so I can get over the bumps and proceed to higher levels 4/5. I want them to be able to connect/apply/own what is taught in the class! This tool has caused me to question "why" I do things the way I do them. Thank You for sharing !!
Attending the training and reading the article for Rigor and Relevance really helped me understand the importance of trying to apply this concept in my classroom each day. Students need to be able to apply their knowledge to their real world experiences. If they are not taught how to apply what is taught at school with what they experience in the real world; knowledge and application can be lost. Unfortunately,students have not always had relevant teaching and as a result they have lacked the ability to apply knowledge in an independent way. Now that teachers are aware of what is going on we must take our teaching to the next level to ensure that our students are learning in such away that they can independently apply their knowledge to real world situations.
Rigor and Relevance training has opened my eyes to new ways of thinking within the classroom. I am always open to learning about new developments in research for improving teaching. Specifically my teaching in the classroom. The article gives me information to ponder and decide what kind of teacher do I want to be in the future. Always in teaching, it comes down to how much time do we spend on testing and how much time do we spend on teaching in the classroom. What is more important? This is a hard balance that I battle with constantly. The videos are also helpful in that you have to stop and think- Am I the teacher I want to be? Are my children getting it in the classroom? Much to think about!
I plan on using the article as a guide to help me in planning my instruction and assessments. The verb list in the article is an extremely useful tool for planning. I believe it is extremely important for us, as teachers, to prepare our students for the future by providing them with real life scenarios in our teachings. On a slightly different note, I do find it slightly more difficult for primary teachers to reach the higher levels. Oh well, what would life be without a challenge?
I agree that standardized tests are not a good portrayal of student knowledge. Multiple choice questions are not the best way to assess and I won't use those types of tests anymore in my classroom. In a language arts class, the students should be writing, even if it's just complete sentence answers.
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