Ideas





D-Quadrant Backward Planning
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Lesson Title: Understanding the Colorado Immigrant Experience Through Podcasting (collaboration with 8th Grade Social Studies Teacher on Immigration Unit)

What is it you Want Students to Know and Be Able to Do? – Content Standards for Our Independent School (St. Mary's Academy)

In the spirit of the independent school community's rather subjective standards: Design a podcast concept related to the immigrant experience in metropolitan Denver, Colorado in order to synthesize concepts covered in the 8th Grade Immigration Unit.

21st Century Skills (ISTE NETS) What will you assess, specifically?
  • Critical thinking and reasoning: Design podcast theme, assign specific production and post-production tasks to each student in group.
  • Information literacy: Use Garage Band technology to successfully edit and produce a podcast.
  • Collaboration: Work in small groups to produce the final podcast product.
  • Self-direction: Troubleshoot technological and intellectual roadblocks, properly credit sources (i.e. music, interviewees), and protect the anonymity of subjects where necessary.
  • Invention: Create original podcast that explores and examines the Denver immigrant experience and share information with the St. Mary's Academy community.

Transfer: Students will be able to independently use their knowledge, understandings, and skills acquired to _
  • Successfully interview people in their community by creating interview questions based on information learned via academic and/or personal research.
  • Use technical and technological skills (i.e. Garage Band) to create podcasts about other topics in the future.
  • Develop enduring empathy for others in the community by nurturing the skills to interact with them directly.

Essential Question Big, broad open question not subject specific
How can we use qualitative research and technological skills to learn about the community in which we live?

Enduring Understanding: What do you hope students to remember 10 years from now?
That they were a part of a student-driven team that mastered the technical skills and had the intellectual capacity necessary to design an informative, moving, relevant podcast about the Denver immigrant experience.

Unit Questions: Open questions – subject specific
How do immigrants in Denver experience life? How do these personal stories inform our concept of immigration in Colorado/the United States?

Content/Guiding Questions: Closed questions – fact finding
What are some of the challenges immigrants in Denver face? How is the legal system in Colorado helping and/or hurting them?

How will you know they know it? Formative & Summative Assessment Strategies of content and skills


Formative Assessments:



Summative Assessments:


Performance Assessment Task – G.R.A.S.P.S.:

Goal: The “hook”Your task is…an engaging introduction that kids can connect with – the “real world” situation
Your task is to conduct interviews with Denver-area immigrants from other countries in an effort to understand their experiences and present their stories in an interesting way.

The Role - Who does this kind of work or problem solving in the “real world?”
Journalists, bloggers, humanitarians.

The Audience – Who will you present your product to (other than the teacher)?
Entire St. Mary's Academy Middle School community (i.e. students, faculty, parents, administration).

The Situation – More details on the goal

The productWhat would you turn in to your boss?
A website with links to each completed podcast and a description of the students involved, their process, and their reflections.

Standards & Criteria for Success – Rubric criteria – what is expected? Should align with learning goals