STEM Resources

Electric Circuits

P-O-E Formative Assessment
Prediction – Evidence – Observation

Thinking about Learning

Hinge Point Questions – Resources

Google Doc – Hinge point questions

Discussion Group

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Maths Misconceptions










See also


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Digital Storytelling

7 Elements of Digital Storytelling

1. Point of View
2. A dramatic question
3. Emotional content
4. The gift of your voice
5. The Power of the Soundtrack
6. Economy
7. Pacing

3 types
* personal narratives
* historical documentaries
* content area stories

12 Lessons:
1. Recognise characteristics of good digital storytelling
2. Consider audience and purpose
3. personal point of view
4. provide support feedback to the scripts of others – be helpful and friendly
5. use high quality images to support the story – large size, own images, or free to use/ modify
6. file image using meaningful names
7. create a detailed storyboard before creating digital story
8. Carefully organise all elements in one location
– create sub folders
– audio
– script
– pictures
– music
9. save files early and often – computer and back up, keep originals, make copies and edit (music and voice recording)
10. Record high quality narration – USB microphone, Audacity, Smartphone and then email file, quiet are – no background noise
11. Consider copyright
12. Collect/ create educational material to support digital story

Assessment and Evaluation
Grading rubric
Story circle and rubric
Self Reflection/ Assessment e.g.

What was the topic and why did you chose this?
What technology hardware and software did you use?
What type of content did you use in creating your digital story?
What were some of the challenges you faced creating the project?
Briefly describe the instructional support materials you created?
What were some of the most significant things you learned?
Do you think you will use digital storytelling in the future?

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Differentiation for Learning in STEM Teaching

Carol Dweck: Mindset Interview

Carol Dweck: The Growth Mindset

Carol Dweck – A Study on Praise and Mindsets


Recommended Reading
General/practitioner readership
Brown, Roediger, & McDaniel: Make It Stick: The Science of Successful Learning (2014)
Burnett: The Idiot Brain: A Neuroscientist Explains What Your Head is Really Up To (2016)
Carey: How we learn (2015)
Didau: What if everything you knew about education was wrong? (2015)
Dweck: Mindset How We Can Learn To Fulfil Our Potential (2012)
Hymer & Gershon: Growth Mindset Pocketbook (2014)
Marzano, Pickering & Pollock: Classroom Instruction that Works (2004)
Sousa & Tomlinson: Differentiation and the Brain (2010)
Tomlinson: The Differentiated Classroom (2014)
Willingham: Why don’t students like school (2010)
Wiliam & Leahy: Embedding Formative Assessment (2015)

Technical/academic readership
Dweck: Self-theories Their Role in Motivation, Personality and Development (2000)
Dunlosky, Rawson, Marsh, Nathan & Willingham: Improving students’ learning with effective learning techniques: Promising directions from cognitive and educational psychology Psychological Science in the Public Interest, 14(1), 4-58 (2013)
Pashler, McDaniel, Rohrer & Bjork: Learning styles: Concepts and evidence Psychological Science in the Public Interest, 9(3), 105-119 (2008)
Hall, T., Strangman, N., & Meyer, A. Differentiated instruction and implications for UDL implementation Wakefield, MA: National Center on Accessing the General Curriculum (2003)

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Differentiating for Learning in STEM Teaching

Differentiation can occur in regard to:

  1. outcome
  2. intervention – role of adults and students
  3. journey – how
  4. process – ways of access

Frameworks  – useful reference points

  1. Blooms Taxonomy
  2. SOLO Taxonomy – Structure of Observed Learning Outcomes

These structures/ quadrants can be used to allow students to choose a suitable pathway forward, depending on their current level of understanding.

  1. Quadrants
    1. Identify 2. Explain
    3. Use… 4. Draw your own…
  2. PACE
    P A C E
    Practice  Apply Correct Extend
    Double my number using cubes

    Solve the word problem on your table.

    Do it using a different method.

    Double muddle! Correct my mistakes.


    Gold coins are doubling in the pirate chest.


Using scaffolds – (providing floors not ceilings!) – structure thinking to make meaning

Thinking organisers

  1. True/False cards
  2. Card sorts
  3. Venn diagrams
  4. Double Bubble
  5. SOLO Maps
  6. Hexagons – connect concepts through the use of subject specific vocabulary

Graphic Organisers

Blooms Taxonomy Cognitive Level Type of Activity Thinking Organiser Thumbnail
Remember Define/ Name Mind Map
Understand Explain Concept Map
Apply Sequence/ Sort Flow Chart
Apply Sequence/ Sort T-Chart
Analyse Compare/ Contrast Double Bubble
Analyse Compare/ Contrast Venn Diagram
Evaluate and Create Cause and Effect Fishbone

Through listening to the discussion generated by students working in pairs/ groups on these scaffolds teachers can make judgements about misconceptions/ further challenges needed. Questioning students to build on their ideas, and then allowing time, directing them to resources and peers who can help them, without just explaining answers, can empower students more. Also expecting students to respond orally in fully developed sentences, using appropriate vocabulary, will provide practice for more developed written responses.


Help Desk

A space which students can go to to access further resources/ support structures,


  • key word lists
  • technoloical support, devices – ipads, tablets, computers
  • text books/ revision guides
  • questions
  • worksheets
  • graphic organisers
  • sentence stems

These can be utilised individual or in pairs.


The aim is to enable all learners, including ourselves, to improve.



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Strategies and Tools for Implementing Danielson, Marzano and other Frameworks. – Thinkcerca

Danielson: Domain 1

Domain 1: Planning and Preparation Outcome-Driven Instructional Leadership Team Practices
1a. Demonstrating Knowledge of content and pedagogy Providing time for teachers to understand research base of lesson design
1b. Demonstrating Knowledge of students Providing regular collaboration opportunities around automated assessment data and student work with colleagues who share cohort of students and with instructional leaders who are accountable for outcomes
1c Setting Instructional Outcomes Providing alignment documents and pacing guides aligned to other instructional resources, developed in collaboration.
1d Demonstrating knowledge of resources Providing time for macro planning to ensure successful launch, meaningful integration, and continuous improvement of teacher knowledge, skill and practice.
1e Designing Coherent Instruction Providing time for macro-planning to ensure successful curriculum development, meaningful integration of resources, and continuous improvement of teacher knowledge, skill and practice.
1f Designing Student Assessments Providing time to collaborate around larger projects and assessments to benchmark progress.

Marzano Design Questions

Domain 1:

  1. What will I do to establish and communicate learning goals, track student progress and celebrate success?
  2. What will I do to help students effectively interact with new knowledge?
  3. What will I do to help students practice and deepen their understanding of new knowledge?
  4. What will I do to help students generate and test hypotheses about new knowledge?
  5. What will I do to engage students?
  6. What will I do to establisher maintain classroom rules and procedures?
  7. What will I do to recognise and acknowledge adherence and lack of adherence to classroom rules and routines?
  8. What will I do to establish and maintain effective relationships with students?
  9. What will I do to communicate high expectations for all students?
  10. What will I do to develop effective lessons organised into a cohesive unit?

Classroom: Differentiation and Coverage

What are we as instructional leaders doing to create the conditions for success for learning?

People As a team, have you determined the underlying skills and concepts and the smaller chunks?
Processes Have you designed the appropriate active learning strategy to match the learning task?
Places Have you created spaces for active learning, self-pacing, additional help?
Products Do you have products that support this work?
Time As a team, are we providing enough time to go deep and differentiate appropriately?


Danielson: Domain 2

Domain 2: Classroom Environment
2a. Creating and Environment of Respect and Rapport
2b Establishing a Culture for Learning
2c Managing Classroom Procedures
2d Managing Student Behaviour
2e Organising Physical Space

Empathy Zones – opportunities for students to work in different spaces depending on their emotional state

“I understand”

“I think I understand”

“I don’t understand”

“I feel great and social”

“I feel ok but not great”

“I want to be left alone”


Planning: Operationalising Teams for Learning

What are we as instructional leaders doing to create the conditions for success for learning?

People As a team, how are you determining what students should know and be able to do and helping each other to create it?
Processes As a team, have you determined a good way to help students capture data and establish a good routine for using it?
Places As a team, are you celebrating success?
Products As a team, do you have a common resource that can support this work?
Time As a team, are you allocating the necessary time to the looking at student work samples as one of the keys to monitoring progress?


Danielson Domain 3

Domain 3: Instruction
3a Communicating with Students
3b Using questioning and discussion techniques
3c Engaging students in Learning
3d Using Assessment in Instruction
3e Demonstrating Flexibility and Responsiveness

Danielson Domain 4

Domain 4: Professional Responsibility
4a Reflecting on Teaching
4b Maintaining Accurate Records
4c Communicating with families
4d Participating in the Professional Community
4e Growing and Developing Professionally
4f Showing Professionalism


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Differentiation for Learning in STEM Teaching

Differentiation can be in terms of:

Task: How we allow appropriate access to the learning for the students.

Outcome: How students communicate their learning.

Intervention: The roles undertaken by the teacher and others doing the learning.

Route: Allowing students different journeys through the learning.



In a study by Steven Boyle and others, the following were identified as potential ‘good learning behaviours’ of students:

  1. Tells teacher when they don’t understand
  2. Asks teacher why they went wrong
  3. Tells teacher what they don’t understand
  4. Checks work against instruction, correcting errors and omissions
  5. When stuck, refers to earlier work before asking teacher
  6. Checks personal comprehension of instruction and material. Requests further information if needed
  7. Seeks reasons for aspects of the work at hand
  8. Anticipates and predicts possible outcomes
  9. Plans a general strategy before starting
  10. Explains purposes and results
  11. Checks teacher’s work for errors; offers corrections
  12. Seeks links between adjacent activities and ideas
  13. Seeks links between non-adjacent activities, ideas and between different topics
  14. Independently seeks further information, following up ideas raised in class
  15. Seeks links between different subjects
  16. Asks inquisitive but general questions
  17. Offers personal examples which are generally relevant
  18. Seeks specific links between schoolwork and personal life
  19. Searches for weaknesses in their own understanding; checks the consistency of their explanations across different situations
  20. Suggests new activities and alternative procedures
  21. Expresses disagreement
  22. Offers ideas, new insights and alternative explanations
  23. Justified opinions
  24. Reacts and refers to comments of other students
  25. Challenges the text or an answer the teacher sanctions as correct





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Differentiating for Learning in STEM Teaching

Points to explore further:

  • encouraging/ structuring opportunities for students to pose more questions
  • I see, I think, I wonder
  • hinge point questions
  • fingers, thumbs, mini whiteboards – visible thinking
  • Can you – identify, explain, use a diagram, draw/ write your own…
  • Concept cartoons – could I develop these from student reflections and common misconceptions?

Concept cartoons:




Identify how to calculate volume of different rectangular prisms – Here are a variety of rectangular prisms. Calculate the volume of each. Check your answer. How accurate are you?

Explain to someone else how to calculate volume of different rectangular prisms – Write or orally record how you calculate the volume of rectangular prisms.

Use a diagram to explain how to calculate volume of different rectangular prisms – Draw a diagram to your ideal piece of fudge, how many pieces would fit in the package and a diagram to show the dimensions that the package would need to be. Calculate the volume of the single serve and the total package.

Write your own problem involving the calculation of volume of rectangular prisms. Record it for others to challenge themselves with.


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