When given the opportunity to make connections in an organic way students begin to deepen their learning and understanding of the concepts. As an educator I cannot count how many times I’ve heard how imperative it is to make sure the assessments and activities were all in alignment. What I always found the struggle to be was aligning real life scenarios with the paper test. This definitely hindered any organic, student centered learning that I wanted so badly. In order to make some changes, align accordingly AND give my students some choice in their content, I need to take the approach of creating a significant learnings environment.
In order to gain deep understandings, the learning environment needs to be one of which nurtures this process and promotes student choice. This was the first assignment where I have had to focus on merging those two concepts together; what to teach and how. Dr. Fink’s 3-column table breaks the Big Hairy Audacious Goal down into smaller, more focused goals. I have created a project for my 5th grade science students. Students will dig deeper into their understanding of weathering, erosion, and deposition and how they change our land. Students will create land models and a video documenting the process of solving a real life problem caused by weathering, erosion, and deposition. Connecting this to my innovation project of integrating ePortfolios into my classroom allows the students to document their learning in a way that allows for student choice and voice.
Fink, L. D. (updated 2013). A self-directed guide to designing courses for significant learning. Retrieved June 22, 2021, from Fink Consulting: http://finkconsulting.info/major-publications/