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Teaching Tip: Learning Objectives to Live By

By Lily Iatridis  October 8, 2013
NEWSLETTER - October 2013 FeatureUse The Right Kind of Learning Objectives

How do you know your kids really understand the content they just learned?

If your young ones are memorizing information just to pass a test, then the odds are they're going to forget it as soon as the test is done. If you're teaching them some concepts or skills that you want them to remember, writing clear and specific learning objectives before you start teaching content will make a world of difference in your results.

For example, learning objectives for content often look like this:

  • Study the Salem witch trials.

That's too vague. Instead, create a learning objective that says exactly what your kids should know and be able to do at the end of the study.

Here's an example:

  • Create a ___(video, illustrated timeline, essay, diorama, etc.) that explains how and why the Salem witch trials came to pass.

Then, you refer to that objective while you choose activities that will help your kids achieve that goal.

Try it! When you have your learning objectives written out in advance like this, ideas for activities will easily fall into place. Not only that, but this practice also makes the purpose of the activities clear to your kids. They won't question you as much!

Does someone else teach your kids? What do their learning objectives look like? They should be on every assignment handout that comes home.



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