Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Lesson Study and Project Approach

What is the difference between Lesson Study and Project Approach (Lilian Katz)?

Kindergarten Educator in Singapore

"A project is an in-depth investigation of a topic worth learning more about. The investigation is usually undertaken by a small group of children within a class, sometimes by a whole class, and occasionally by an individual child. The key feature of a project is that it is a research effort deliberately focused on finding answers to questions about a topic posed either by the children, the teacher, or the teacher working with the children. The goal of a project is to learn more about the topic rather than to seek right answers to questions posed by the teacher."

This is taken from http://ceep.crc.uiuc.edu/eecearchive/digests/1994/lk-pro94.html

For example, students may learn about founding fathers in class. Some of them (or the whole class or one child) may become interested to learn more about Lee Kuan Yew. They may do internet research or read relevant books appropriate for their age or ask their parents questions about Lee Kuan Yew. They may pose questions that they can ask Mr Lee should they actually get to meet Lee Kuan Yew. This is an example of the Porject Approach that many eary childhood educators are familiar with - thanks to Katz. It is a teaching and learning strategy.

Lesson Study is a professional development activity where teachers 'study' lessons by discussing a lesson plan, by observing students and talking about what they see and so on.

As you can see it is possible to do Lesson Study on different teaching and learning strategies including the Project Approach.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Engaging Students During Problem Solving

I was wondering...what are some ways that teachers in Singapore engage students while teaching problem solving?

Educator in the US

I understand that you teach math at college level? A good way to engage students while teaching problem solving is to ask students to suggest their way of solving the problem. Thus, students will see solutions of various degree of sophistication and choose one that is appropriate for themselves. For more difficult solutions, teachers can scaffold the process by asking questions and giving hints. The choice of problem is important - it must cater to a range of students. Focus on the process and not the final answer. In planning the lesson, anticipate how the students will respond.

See Marshall Cavendish Institute Facebook or http://singaporelessonstudy.blogspot.com/ for an example used with junior high school (grade nine)students in Japan.