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Analysis of a Learning Design and Assessment Plan

Stephanie Stahl (10060002)
Dr. Andreea Cervatiuc
EDUC 460-05
23 February 2015


Chosen Plan: Unit Plan for English I Unit 1- Your Family and Your Friends

Established Goals
The established goals outlined in this plan are very thorough, as well as thoughtfully
chosen. As stated in the heading of the plan, the teacher has created the goals in a way that is not
word-for-word from the program of studies curriculum, but rather reworded and adapted in a
way that is perhaps more relevant for his or her own classroom and students. I believe this shows
that the teacher has put a lot of thought into which goals he or she has chosen as necessary for
the unit, as well as how these goals can be necessarily adapted to fit ones classroom needs. At
first glance, it appeared as though there may be too many goals for a single unit to cover, and I
worried that perhaps this teacher was setting his or her sights too high. However, further inquiry
proved otherwise, as it became clear that the goals are connected to one another in a way that
fosters learning of one goal through pursuit of another. I believe that these goals are both
thoughtful and attainable, if addressed correctly by the teacher.

The enduring understandings in this plan are well done in that they are broad, yet highly
relevant. The understandings are essential and vital, and, if properly attained, will allow the
students to become successful in future English classes and encounters. The understandings
present potential for further inquiry, while providing students with the necessary initial building
blocks for basic literacy understandings. Given this, I believe that these enduring understandings
are well established and will enhance the teachers instruction throughout the unit.


Essential Questions
The essential questions connect to the enduring understandings as well as the established
goals, making them both relevant and necessary for the chosen unit. Again, like the enduring
understandings, these essential questions are broad, yet specific, and, if pursued in a proper
fashion, have the potential to foster and encourage further inquiry into the question itself. The
questions are open-ended, and allow for varied answers and responses, which is important for an
English Language lesson plan. The questions foster creativity and critical thinking, both of which
are necessary for future success in English classes, other classroom settings, as well as the world
in general.

Knowledge and Skills

The knowledge section of this plan may appear short, but this leads to important inquiry
regarding the plan as a whole. It is clear that this teacher is not focused on the literal knowledge
that can be attained through the unit, but rather more on the critical inquiry and creative thinking
that can arise from the unit. While the knowledge stated in the plan are of course necessary for
the curriculum standards, I appreciate that this is one of the shorter sections of the unit plan, as
transmitting knowledge to our students is not necessarily the most important part of teaching.
Given what I have said above, it is now interesting to see how long the skills section of
this plan is. It may appear daunting at first, but upon further inquiry, it is clear that the teacher
has chosen these skills for a particular reason. Not only are these skills relevant to the unit, but
they can also be carried and applied across curriculums and subjects. The skills outlined in this
plan are more interpretive than the knowledge the students will acquire, and I believe this


represents the teachers apparent value placed in creative and critical thinking, rather than
knowledge alone.

Assessment Evidence
The assessment evidence as outlined in this plan is very well done both in terms of
planning and, as later explained in the plan, apparent execution. There are three performance
tasks, which are larger assignments, as well as other evidence, which are smaller tasks. While
the performance tasks are more geared towards summative assessment methods, the other
evidence tasks are methods of formative assessment. It is important to have a balance between
the two, and this teacher has done an excellent job of outlining each of these tasks in the plan.

Lesson Activities
This teacher has gone above and beyond anything I have ever seen in terms of planning
learning activities. Each week, there are pre-reading activities, reading activities, and postreading activities, an assignment, as well as time for discussion and exploration of the topics.
The teacher outlines these activities in such detail that I truly believe any other teacher could
pick up this plan and apply it in the classroom. There is a balance between traditional and nontraditional texts and activities, which allows for exploration of multimodal literacies. The lesson
activities and weekly plans connect to the goals, understandings, questions, knowledge, and
skills as outlined in the plan, and this consistency makes clear how these activities will foster
development of what is previously seen in the plan. Not only are there descriptions of the
activities, but also there are blueprints and rubrics for the performance tasks. The rubrics are
thorough and fair, and the blueprints explicitly state how each task connects to the desired


understandings and curriculum standards. The activities definitely adhere to the WHERETO
principle, and I believe that this teacher has done an amazing job of creating lesson activities that
are fun, engaging, and applicable to the plan as a whole.

As I explained before, this teacher appears to value relevant skills that do not necessarily
apply to the subject alone; these skills can be carried across other curriculums and situations in
school and life. Given this, I believe the teacher values cross-curricular education and the
development of cross-curricular understandings and explorations.
The lesson activities reflect the teachers understanding of multimodal literacies as
having growing importance in the classroom. Tasks are assigned to students and are conducted in
class in both traditional and non-traditional ways, and the students will be able to carry these
skills with them for life.
This teacher encourages communication, discussion, creativity, and critical thinking
within the classroom. Each week, students are given the opportunity to write and talk about their
experiences with the text, and are able to develop and evolve their previous understandings into
new, unfolding knowledge and skill sets.
I believe this teacher is not a sage on the stage, but rather a facilitator within the
classroom. Students are encouraged to develop their own understandings of topics, while
adhering to curriculum standards and expectations. This is a delicate, yet achievable balance, as
demonstrated by this dedicated teacher.


Program of Studies
Not only does this plan succeed in meeting curriculum and program of studies
requirements, it goes beyond the skills and knowledge outlined in the curriculum. The
established goals outline the curriculum standards, and the rest of the plan builds on these
requirements. Through thoughtful and engaging activities, as well as fair evaluation methods,
this teacher will be able to achieve curriculum standards through creative and meaningful means.
As a teacher, it is important to adhere to the program of studies standards, but I believe it is just
as important to be thoughtful in how these standards are achieved. This plan encourages
creativity in meeting these standards, and I believe that this plan will prove successful when
applied in a classroom; students will be critically engaged, and will also acquire the skills and
knowledge necessary to meet curriculum standards.

I cannot think of any recommendations for this lesson plan. As I mentioned, I believed at
first that many of the sections were either too long or too short. However, upon further thought
and investigation, it became clear that these are specific choices that deliberately represent the
teachers values within the classroom. I hope to achieve this level of understanding of the UbD
method, as I believe this lesson plan is a great representation of what can be achieved through
proper use of the UbD template.