Do you have a daily agenda posted on your chalkboard, class blog or class website to give an overview of the class? Is that daily agenda an activity list of what the students will do such as “read chapter two and answer questions”, “work on the Power Point presentation”, and “discuss the problem”, etc.? Or is it a list of the performance tasks that students need to do to be successful in the standard such as “contrast pre-Revolutionary life to post-Revolutionary life”, “decide whether So-Journer Truth or Harriet Tubman contributed more to the Underground Railroad”, and “analyze the pros and cons of the issue”.
“Read chapter two” tells the students nothing about what you expect them to learn. It is an activity. They will only know when they are done reading but not what they are to learn from the experience.
“Contrast pre-Revolutionary life to post-Revolutionary life” adds a specific purpose that helps students work toward achieving a Social Studies standard. Students know what they are get out of reading the text. As they read, they will be thinking of the post-Revolutionary life and trying to identify differences with the pre-Revolutionary life.
When you change your daily agenda to be a standards performance task listing, your students will have a clearer idea of what you want them to learn. They will be aware of the high expectations you have for the learning. You will be able to monitor their progress in their learning since each performance task is measurable.
Please share a sample of your daily standards performance task listing.
© Harry Grover Tuttle, 2007