Session 1: Introduction to Backward Design
A New Approach
In 1–2 pages, compare and contrast your approach to instructional design with the UbD approach. Include the answers to the following questions:
How are they similar?
How are they different?
What questions do you have about UbD that you hope get answered by the time you complete this course?
Utilizing the approach of backward design when planning instruction involves the teacher identifying what the student should be able to understand and achieve by the end of the unit and then purposefully working backwards to scaffold instruction allowing for opportunities to deepen the understanding and depth of knowledge achieved (Wiggins & McTighe, 2006, p. 13). How am I, as an instructor, supposed to be able to determine the desired results, what evidence is acceptable and plan the learning experiences within the context of a school year that focuses on so much more than the state benchmarks? How do I create instruction utilizing backward design that takes into account the lack of skills my students come to me with in the beginning of the year? How will I ensure that my students retain the information (Wiggins & McTighe, 2006, p. 19) and perform with understanding, knowledge and skill on their own? Backward design seems to be able to answer those questions while being the pinnacle of good planning and instruction. As a teacher it is my goal to ensure that I continue along the path of strengthening my design weaknesses and reinforcing the facets of backward design that I already have set in place.
Contrasting the way I approach instruction to the UbD approach enables me to see a clearer picture of the myriad of differences between the methods. I tend to start at the beginning of a chapter and work my way through to the end. I am one of the teachers discussed by Wiggins (Bright, 2006) who is very short-term focused on a specific lesson without putting in place links which connect...