10 Key Ideas

Big ideas about teaching that make mathematics & science learning possible for every student

Inquiry-based instruction: You can guide students to explore math and science ideas through questions and (high cognitive demand) tasks with limited direct instruction.

Infographic by Hayley Pyle, Michael Pyle & Emme Ritchie

Authentic, phenomena-based learning: You can use real-world phenomena and/or issues as an effective place to start to plan lessons or units because students benefit from using mathematics and science to understand, more deeply, authentic problems, issues, or situations.

Infographic by: April Hicks, Alexis Lancaster, Nathan Penrod & Allie Whitaker

Core ideas: Knowing/understanding “how and why” something in the world (and in math and science) works is often more challenging but important than “knowing that” it works.

Infographic by: Tiarra Baker & Katelyn Bertou

Classroom norms: Taking time to establish productive norms about what mathematics/science is, how we do it, and who can do it can support students to see themselves as learners and doers of mathematics and science and to engage productively throughout the year.

Infographic by: Jessica Bruns, Macy Burchfield, Rachel Poppert & Caelan White

Students’ understandings about/to change the world: Students can change their ideas about the world (or change aspects of their worlds) through participating in scientific practices and applying mathematical reasoning.

Infographic by: Ronald Allen, Jennifer Doty & Chris Hussey

Student-centered instruction: You can use students’ ideas and work to drive the lesson forward so that instruction builds on and responds/adapts to student thinking.

Infographic by: Daniel Blackburn, Maria Dassow, Francesca Grill & Austin Marsh

Eliciting students’ ideas/thinking: You can use a range of discourse moves and assessment strategies to understand students’ initial ideas about the math and science concepts you are teaching to help you use their ideas as resources in your classroom.

Infographic by: Jonathan Conricode, Lou Ann Cristy, Katie Erb & Abby Ketron

Classroom discourse: You can use a number of discourse moves to support students to elaborate on their thinking and to support students to engage with each other’s thinking through productive discourse about math and science.

Collaborative learning: Students benefit from learning with and from their peers by sharing ideas and strategies in small groups and whole class discussions.

Infographic by: Mahala Cain, Nicole Hood, Russell Spaulding & Tre Tatum

Multiple solutions or multiple solution strategies/representations/models: You can engage students with multiple approaches and representations/models for problems or questions generated by themselves and their peers to support deeper math and science learning.

Infographic by: Destiny Bussell & Andrew Hoffman