Making Learning Visible: Understanding, Documenting, and Supporting Individual and Group Learning
Film Strip
Film Strip
The Airplane Activity:

Introduce yourselves to each other.

Instructions for Learners: Please come up with two different designs for paper airplanes that can fly at least 10 feet carrying at least five pennies.

Begin by discussing the task as a group for the first 5 minutes. Then you will have about 15 minutes to design the two airplanes.

Instructions for Documenter/Observers: Please observe with the following question in mind: What do you notice about the individual and group's process of building knowledge and what can you point to that makes you say that?

Watch for interesting or important moments or shifts in the ways ideas are being developed. Afterwards, we'd like you not just to describe, but to interpret how those moments advanced the knowledge-building of the group.

Please document your observations individually. You can document in any way you wish—jot down bits of conversation, write short descriptive notes, draw pictures or diagrams—but you must document in some way!

STEP II: DEBRIEFING IN SMALL GROUPS

Observers: Share with the learners your observations and documentation about the individuals' and group's process of building knowledge. Try to identify interesting or important moments or shifts in the ways ideas were being developed and offer an interpretation of how they advanced the learning process.

Learners: Share your responses to the documenters' observations and interpretations as well as your own reflections regarding interesting or important moments or shifts in the learning process and what you learned about aerodynamics.

As a Small Group: Choose one thing you learned about the principles of aerodynamics, and one thing you learned about individual and group learning or the process of documentation to share with the whole group.

STEP III: WHOLE GROUP DISCUSSION

Small groups each report one thing they learned about aerodynamics and one thing they learned about individual and group learning or the process of documentation.


2005 Making Learning Visible Project at the Harvard Graduate School of Education




Copyright 2006 Project Zero, Harvard Graduate School of Education, Harvard University.
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