UbD at the Beach

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  • I'm so excited to go back to school this year and utilize UbD in my lesson planning!
  • I know it focuses on student understanding, but how can you make sure your students have really learned the material?
  • Okay, well what are the steps to implementing an Understanding by Design program?
  • UbD offers a 3-stage design process that enables teachers to support students on their endeavor to give meaning to the content being provided.
  • Wow, that's really amazing! So where do we begin?
  • Stage 1 helps us organize our learning goals, and establish which Standard we want to reflect in our accomplishments.
  • Student understanding is evident if the child can transfer the knowledge obtained in class, and utilize it in authentic, real-life situations. If students have the capacity to explain, interpret, apply, shift perspective, empathize, and self assess, it indicates that they can successfully make these connections. 
  • Stage 2 helps us assess students' understanding through evidence, such as insightful explanations, or their ability to interpret what they have learned.
  • In UbD lesson planning, it is essential that teachers establish 3 key components: What are my desired results?  How will I assess students using valid evidence?  What opportunities will I create to ensure student acquisition, meaning making, and transfer?
  • Okay...so where does the actual lesson fit into all of this?
  • In UbD, the lesson design takes place in the final Stage, Stage 3.  That way, what we teach and how we teach can follow the goals established in Stage 1 and Stage 2.
  • In stage 1, it is crucial that students can connect "meaning" to a bigger picture, and are able to autonomously "transfer" this meaning to new ideas.  However, we must be mindful of potential misconceptions by establishing explicit goals that will identify these troubling areas.
  • Teachers can design an authentic engagement bu utilizing the GRASP method, which will encourage students to establish the Goal, Role, Audience, Situation, and Performance during their assessment tasks.  It is important to remember to logically follow the goals established in Stage 1!
  • In order to assure that we are teaching for understanding, we must keep in mind these three interrelated goals throughout each Stage:  acquisition of information, making meaning of that information, and connecting or transferring that information to authentic scenarios.
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