The ” Objectives” Issue

How many times have you been told you must post or share your learning objectives at the beginning of your lesson?

I had the pleasure of listen to Paul Anderson address the Wisconsin Society of Science Teachers last spring. One of the first issues he brought up was the need to push back on administrators requests to post learning objectives on the board. Shortly after this I saw the video linked below to a discussion with Jason Crean on the matter. Teacher’s who engage in inquiry should consider alternative strategies to posting objectives. UBD author, Grant Wiggins chimes in with the writing of his article, “Mandating the Posting of Learning Objectives and other Mindless Policies. The policy is well meant, but perhaps superficial.

I am implementing the Illinois Storyline for the first time this year. I have decided to post the essential question for the lesson and the Science and Engineering Practice(SEP) and/or Crosscutting Concept(CCC) as “learning targets”.

Another strategy is to have students co-create the learning objectives with you. This is done as part of the discussion and reflection for each lesson. Stem Teaching Tools has a nice description of this approach. I hope to grow into this process too.

This shared Google Doc addresses FAQ’s for implementing NGSS storylines

Green Chemistry Curriculum

Green Chemistry Curriculum

Are you a Chemistry of Physical Science teacher who would like access to free resources that support greener labs and teaching about sustainability? Check out the resources available at Beyond Benign. This group supports professional development, teacher collaboration and the publication of free curriculum. Their lessons are designed to improve upon traditional chemistry labs done in science classes by using safer chemicals and challenging students to think about new ways to use science to reduce chemical impact and use naturals resources more sustainably. I had a chance to join one of their online collaboration sessions and I am thrilled to discover the idea and resources.