Homework – Argh!

I am taking an online class called Teaching For Understanding 1: Focus on Student Understanding offered by Harvard Graduate School of Education through their WIDE program (still wondering what WIDE stands for; can’t find it):

WIDE courses are developed using the Teaching for Understanding (TfU) Framework. The TfU Framework was developed by researchers and educators at Project Zero at the Harvard Graduate School of Education (1989-1996) as a tool to design, revise, and review curriculum and instruction that helps students develop understanding. 

The content is really interesting, but the format is driving me nuts.  Moreover, I don’t really have time to process the information they are offering.  I am totally winging it.

Luckily I am on a team and we are saving each other.  But I have homework.  Due tomorrow.

Assignment: Apply the Ladder of Feedback in a NEW way. You have already used the Ladder of Feedback to provide feedback to each other here online. Now, we want you to use the Ladder of Feedback right in your own classroom or work setting or with a colleague. Teach the rungs of the ladder to your students–young children may only use the clarify and value rungs 
  1. Select an important assignment your students will do, one for which you or you and learners can develop a list of criteria. The criteria should describe “high quality” work on that assignment. 
  2. Teach the Ladder of Feedback to your students.  Help your students or colleague to see the Ladder of Feedback as a tool for offering support and constructive, supportive feedback to others so that the feedback can be used to improve a major assignment or work project. 
  3. Ask your students to work in pairs (using the Ladder of Feedback and the criteria you developed for “high quality” work to help improve the assignment/work project before it is to be formally assessed by the teacher or a supervisor.
Need a visual of the ladder?
So…

This must be how my students feel some of the time.  When their parents’ describe evenings where they did whatever they could to “just get it done”. 

I forgive them as I am going to forgive myself.

Luckily our students are in the middle of writing geography stories.  And some of them are “done”.  But I love telling them they are never really “done” because even our good writing can get better.   This ladder of feedback will be a nice step back, another opportunity to review their work with peers as we more thoughtfully set up a classroom culture that is safe for critical peer feedback.  

My question is should I do this exercise with a small of focus group of students who are in pretty good shape or subject students who really need more time to just write to all of my shenanigans?  Because lets be honest.  I just learned about this ladder of feedback and I am just using it to complete my homework. 

I should probably leave those kids out of it for now.  I can always share this model with them when they have more of their story written.  I only need a few kids to produce a write-up.  This course is trying to prove to us that this format works, and I will go ahead and just believe them.  

Phew okay.  I have a plan.  Thanks. Reflection on how it went and whether or not I finished my homework on time to come.  

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