Using the Performance Continuum in Planning Activities

Steps 3 and 4 of the teaching and learning cycle involve designing a learning activity to address the real-life concerns of learners and developing a plan to capture evidence and report learning. At this stage teachers can develop their own planning tool or use one described in Step 3.

  1. Based on the information you collected in Steps 1 and 2, determine the performance levels of your students. For example, students who have mastered the knowledge and skills described in Performance Level 2 can work on the dimensions of performance described in Performance Level 3.

  2. Start to fill out a planning guide by brainstorming with students what to list in the left-hand column "What do we need to know?" (Step 3 of the teaching and learning cycle). Make sure you have a copy of the description of the performance level you have selected to look at as you brainstorm. Move back and forth between the goal-specific knowledge, skills and strategies and the dimensions of performance at the level you have selected until you have covered all the main activities you will need to reach the goal.

    Note: You may find that some activities may cover several dimensions of performance at once while others may address just one sub-skill within a single dimension. Not all teaching and learning activities must address each of the bulleted items in the performance level descriptions.

  3. Work with students to fill out the middle column of the Planning Guide by thinking about the activities you will plan. Consider how much time each activity will take and how much time overall you have.

    Claire started by having students restate their goal so it was as specific as possible using the Stating a Clear Goal worksheet in the toolkit. They settled on this one: To negotiate with parents, students, and day care providers to resolve conflicts about responsibilities for making sure the center is tidy and safe at pick up time. Since this was a "found" lesson Claire had to improvise on the spot. She drew three columns under the definition of the standard she had put on the blackboard. Paraphrasing, she put a simplified version of the Performance Level 2 knowledge skills and strategies the left-hand column under "What do we need to know?". (See the Supports section of the toolkit for tips on simplifying text.) The class went over the steps and refined the language. Then they wrote a rough plan of the activities they would work on. They decided they would do most of the work in this class session. They would begin by trying to understand the problem and points of agreement and disagreement. They divided into small groups to do this, with at least one parent and one of the daycare providers in each group. They then would come together to come up with two or more possible solutions and to get ready to hold a meeting outside of class with parents, children and day care providers. A key part of getting ready was to develop a list of strategies that could be used at the meeting and a checklist of processes that could be used to make sure the negotiation was fair and effective. Some students would be appointed to observe the meeting to see how these tools and processes were used. The class decided that after the meeting they would spend part of one class session evaluating how well the negotiation process had gone and what they had learned about resolving conflicts.

Planning Guide

Standard: Resolve Conflict and Negotiate
Teaching and Learning Activity: To negotiate with parents, students, and day care providers to resolve conflicts about responsibilities for making sure the center is tidy and safe at pick up time.

What do we need to know?

How can we learn it?

How will we show we know it?
How to select and use a few strategies to help the parents, children and day care providers reach a solution everyone can live with. (KSS Bullet 3) Appoint class members to present the two solutions at the meeting. Suggest some strategies they can use to help the group to reach a decision everyone can live with. (The teacher may provide examples of conflict negotiation strategies.)

Make a checklist of ways to make sure the negotiation process is effective and fair. Appoint some students to attend the meeting as observers of the negotiation. Ask them to take notes regarding the effectiveness and fairness of the meeting.
List of two or more "win-win" solutions.

Strategies checklist

Checklist for a fair and effective negotiation session

To see a complete version of this Planning Guide, click here.

Click here to print out a blank Word version of the Planning Guide to use in your program.

Multi-Level Classes

In multi-level classes you may find that students fall within two or three different performance levels. In this case you may need to create modified planning guides for each level. Often you can plan instruction where the activities themselves are similar but the expectations are different depending on the level. For example, students performing at a lower level may be asked to respond to a simpler conflict with only one area of disagreement and where they will use a few simple strategies to negotiate. Students at a higher level may be assigned a more complex conflict to resolve where they are expected to use a wide range of strategies to facilitate negotiation.

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