Kids don't always understand the standards that teachers refer to when they're teaching a lesson. The easiest way to help students understand what they're going to learn is to "unpack" them first. This is a very useful strategy if you'd like your students to be able to answer the question, "What are you learning about today?".
One of the components of Personalized Learning is the transparency of learning, where students explain the standards they're learning and track their progress toward mastery of the standards. Unpacking standards before teaching the content gives the students ownership of their learning. Participating in this activity before learning a new concept can also increase motivation by holding students accountable for personal academic goals.
How do you "unpack" standards?
Write the standard out so the kids are aware of the original language.
Example: 2.NBT.A.4 - Number & Operations in Base Ten /Understand place value. 4. Compare two three-digit numbers based on meanings of the hundreds, tens, and ones digits, using >,=, and < symbols to record the results of comparisons.
As a group, pull out the verbs and nouns or terms to know.
This will help students understand what they need to know and do. Teachers and students can do this by circling, underlining or highlighting the terms.
Example: Compare two three-digit numbers based on meanings of the hundreds, tens, and ones digits, using >,=, and < symbols to record the results of comparisons.
Know: digits, hundreds, tens, ones, symbols >,=,<
Do: Compare, record the results
Use the words you've pulled out and change the original standard language to "kid friendly" terms.
Example: I can compare 3 digit numbers with hundreds, tens and ones using >,= and < signs.
Once the standard is written in "kid friendly terms," have the students answer the following questions:
- What am I learning about?
- Why am I learning this?
- How will I know I learned this?
Some examples of unpacked standard and helpful video links are posted below.
Try it today! Good luck and visit us again soon for next steps to Personalize Learning in your classroom!