Today Dr. Petrosino walked the students through a guide to the Legacy Cycle that he created He stressed to the students the importance of contextualizing the content knowledge in the cycle, and gave the Jasper problem and the circumference of the Earth problem as examples. Each of these problems told a story, which helps students to categorize the knowledge, organize it, and retrieve it later. Students who learn from this type of problem are more likely to apply the content in novel situations.
For each step of the Legacy Cycle, Dr. Petrosino’s guide had a definition, a practical explanation, and hints for getting it done.
For the Look Ahead and Reflect Back step, he brought up as an example the AAAS Atlas of Science Literacy (link: http://www.project2061.org/publications/atlas/default.htm). This book is filled with visual domain maps that show interrelated concepts in science, measurement and engineering that may help to stimulate ideas and connections in the Legacy Cycle.
The challenge step of the Legacy Cycle should pose a complex goal for students; interesting challenges engage students in a process of inquiry that requires them to apply the desired concepts beyond simple manipulation. It is similar to a driving question or anchor, and has the same characteristics: worthwhile, feasible, contextualized, meaningful, and open-ended. Dr. Petrosino suggested that students abandon the ideas of right and wrong and look at how knowledge develops over time. He also reminded them that they must have a lot of things in mind to design a good legacy cycle, and stressed that the Legacy Cycle is not simply “taking 5E and putting in a circle”
For the purposes of this class, the challenge will be a 3-5 minute video. It needs to go beyond simply downloading a youtube video or setting a powerpoint to music. Students should use www.edb.utexas.edu/anchorvideo/howto.php to get guidance in making this challenge video.
The class then viewed the Golden Statuette video as an example of a good challenge video that models tool use, problem solving, and a narrative.
The Generate Ideas step allows students to explore their initial thoughts and ideas. Dr. Petrosino encouraged students to think of this as formative assessment, rather than brainstorming. Having students put forth whatever is on their mind is not productive; instead, this should be scaffolded and kept content specific. The class then viewed the Mission to Mars video as an example of effective, content specific stimulation of ideas.
The Gather Multiple Perspectives step gives students the opportunity to listen to experts in the field describe their own hypotheses and ideas about the same problem. It is very important that this comes AFTER students give their own ideas. Things need to progress from the bottom up, valuing the children’s initial ideas and giving them an opportunity to express themselves.
The Research and Revise step allows students to test their own hypothesis, which is the core of the cycle.
For Thursday, students should have a vague idea for each step of the Legacy Cycle laid out.