Monthly Archives: February 2016

ET 542 Topic 5 Plan the assessment

This week, we are to reflect how  our “planned assessments meet the key requirements for effective assessments, and additionally reflect on how we could adjust our teaching during the project to allow more student input in the evaluation process.”

Assessment Keys are (as taken from our class Moodle page)

How do the rubrics fit the Keys to assessment?

The rubrics for the formative activities (labs) are clear in terms of expectations.

Students are creating videos to educate and inform peers on the science behind an activity.

The videos will be shared with class, athletic department, and school community.

The formative assessments will be used so students know which content skills they need to review and learn more deeply, the journal and meetings will be used to assess collaboration and guide students with their action plans.

Here is a link to my project page where you can view the formative and summative assessments.

ET 542 Topic 4

This week’s Learning Log/Reflective Journal
Reflect on what you have learned this week, as you have settled on an idea for your project. Comment on the tools you are using or the resources you have reviewed
Respond to the question: Is it still PBL without an authentic audience?
I chose the former.
This week has been very challenging (create the Driving Question)!
Driving questions need to be open ended, drive inquiry, and have multiple sub questions. I finally settled on:
Driving Question
How can we create a video that uses the Physics of kinematics to explain and improve the performance of MHS track athletes?

Sub Questions
What is kinematics?
How do I use kinematic vocabulary to describe motion?
What are the basic kinematic equations and how can they be used to explain a runner’s motion?
What types of data tables, diagrams, and graphs can we create to model a runner’s motion?
What kind of data do we need to create kinematic graphs?
How do we use graphs to solve kinematic problems?
What does the shape of the various kinematic graphs reveal about a runner’s motion?
What does slope of the various kinematic graphs tell us about the motion?
What does the area under the various kinematic graphs tell us about the motion?
What are the kinematic equations?
How do we use the kinematic equations to solve problems?
How can we use the information to explain a runner’s motion?
Can we use kinematics to suggest performance enhancements?
What information do we need to include in our video?
What format should our video take?

I think I am on the right track, but creating the DQ has raised more questions in my mind. I really would like to make the project The Science of MHS Hornets Video series where students choose the activity and create a video based on physics concepts to explain the topic. For my first PBL I think that is too broad a topic so I have narrowed it to the Physics of Kinematics.

Here is the link to my project page as it evolves.

ET542: Topic three, weeks 3/4

This week’s Learning Log/Reflective Journal entry:
  • Find an article on the topic of the effectiveness of Project Based Learning in diverse classrooms. Post a reflection on your thoughts after reading the article.
  •  Post a reflection regarding your research this week on Project-Based Learning. What were you able to find? How do you think PBL will fit into your teaching style? Do you have an idea for a project? If so, begin articulating it now.

I chose the latter.

 WOW! What a busy couple of weeks! I looked at many different PBL’s, and got so many great ideas. One thing I did notice is that some of the PBL’s had so MUCH information, it was a little overwhelming (for a novice PBLer)!
I had many ideas for a project such as: “The Physics of ______ (Students choose their favorite activity)”, “What do Physicists do?”, “What does the motion of the stars in the night sky tell us about the universe?”, “How do meteorologists make accurate forecasts?”, and “What object in our solar system should NASA explore next and why?” to name just a few.
I ultimately decided on using a takeoff of the Physics of…idea and decided to have students explore fundamental kinematics through track. The idea is for students to collect data, graph data, interpret data using graphical analysis such as slope and area under the graph, and the kinematic equations to explain the motion and make suggestions for maximizing performance. After starting with this, I realize that I will most likely scale it back, as this is my first PBL, and I think it will be better to start small. My original plan was to use this project throughout the kinematics unit which is divided into 3 sub units:
  1. the basics,
  2. describing motion with graphs, and
  3. Free Fall and the Big Four Equations.

The entire unit takes about 45 class days. I think that changing my original scope to encompass just the kinematic graphing portion of the unit (which is usually about 15 days) will be much more manageable for a first time PBLer!

I have found the book published by BIE “PBL Starter Kit” immensely helpful. In particular, when I first looked at the list of 21st century skills, I quickly realized that the project encourages students to use many of them. As per the PBL starter kit, teachers should limit their project “to explicitly teach and assess two 21st century skills that are found in all projects: collaboration and presentation.” (p.35). Teachers are encouraged to other skills, but not actually teach and assess.

After posting my project ideas, my peers have given some excellent feedback. I wasn’t sure what I was going to have students produce (i was thinking prezi, poster, website, etc) in terms of a product. After my peers comments and EXCELLENT suggestions, I have decided that I will have students create videos entitled The Science of MHS Hornets” modeled on the NBC Learn Videos such as Science of the NFL or Science of the Olympic Winter Games. We watch some of these in class, so I think students will see the “real world application”. I plan to share the videos with the school community, and in particular the track team. I am hoping to expand the idea of the Science of the MHS Hornet to other sports and activities for the future! Very excited about this!