Working Inside the Black Box

Reflection for my Curriculum & Instruction (C&I) reading of:  Working Inside the Black Box, by Paul Black, Christine Harrison, Clare Lee, Bethan Marshall, and Dylan Wiliam, Kings College, 2004.


I enjoyed reading Working Inside the Black Box by Black and Wiliam.  Their work and recommendations align with what we learned in literacy class this summer, especially about authentic questions, “Why do you think that?” versus test questions, “What do we do next?” and opening up a class for learning-centered discussions.  Cross course reinforcement like this helps strengthen adoption of new pedagogical approaches.

Also, as discussed in literacy class, I plan to incorporate as much whole-class discussion as possible serving as facilitator and not lecturer, or instructor, bringing students to the boards as often as possible to help them share their thinking and learning with their peers, and vice versa.  My largest concern here is ensuring I am effective and successful at creating lesson plans for this modality.

I plan to provide feedback through comments, perhaps in a journal per student, and either not mark grades, or delay providing grades until after students respond to my comments.  I still need to figure out for which assessments I will do this since I do not plan to grade homework, except whether it was submitted or not, and the same for class work.  However, I may use some combination of self-assessment and peer-assessment for homework and class work.

About Dave aka Mr. Math Teacher

Secondary math teacher teaching math intervention, algebra 1, honors precalculus, and AP Calculus AB. I spent 25 years in high tech in engineering, marketing, sales and business development roles in the satellite communications, GPS, semiconductor, and wireless industries. I am awed by the potential in our nation's youth and I hope to instill in them the passion to improve our world at local, state, national, and global levels.
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