Ensuring that students are clear on the expectations of learning is one of the most effective ways to impact student achievement. Yet, I have found, through trial and lots of error, that establishing clarity is not a straightforward process for students or teachers.
There was an assumption on my part that if “I do” the sharing of expectations with kids, they will learn. I thought if I shared the learning expectations verbally, stated the goals clearly on the board, provided easy-to-read rubrics, and gave students time to write down the learning expectations, they would develop clarity. That didn’t seem to do the trick for most kids. Akin to hearing a lecture without checks for understanding, students watched me teach but didn’t take an active approach to ensuring that they understood the expectations of learning.
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