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Instructional Update 9-19-19
Kathy House
Thursday, September 19, 2019

When you know your why, your what has more impact…This video clip exemplifies the importance of clearly communicating the purpose and relevance of the work in which we engage students.

Students see greater value in their schoolwork when they understand its relevance to their own lives and when it connects to something they personally value, such as a purpose that is bigger than themselves. When students understand the value of their schoolwork, they show greater interest in their schoolwork, and are better able to “learn deeply” and resist distractions.

Purpose = Expectations

Establishing a clear purpose for learning content serves as a priming mechanism for new learning and results in increased student understanding of the content.  In stating a purpose, we make our expectations for learning clear. When teachers have high expectations for students, communicate those expectations, and provide the support necessary to achieve them, student performance soars; conversely, when teachers have low expectations and communicate this either verbally or non verbally, student achievement suffers (Marzano, 2011). 

Objectives Versus Purpose Statements

lesson objective is in the mind of the teacher; establishing purpose refers to the act of carefully communicating the objective to students. The establishment of purpose is accomplished through intentional use of lesson objectives by the teacher to let students know what they will learn and what they will be expected to do with what they've learned. A clearly stated and understood purpose lays the foundation for a schema building of concepts, skills, and information.

Purpose and Attention

What is important from the outset is student attention. When the lesson begins with something that grabs students, the purpose does not have to be set in advance; at other times, the purpose can serve to focus students and gain their attention. There is a reciprocal relationship between purpose and attention, and one that is worthy of the teacher's time.

Purpose and Gradual Release of Responsibility

The role of the teacher with gradual release of responsibility goes across six phases: (1) models expert behavior; (2) monitors the group's understanding; (3) engages in diagnosis of emerging competence; (4) pushes for deeper understanding; (5) scaffolds the weaker students' emerging competence; and (6) fades into the background whenever the students are able to take charge of their own learning.  These six phases set forward a clear purpose for the role of the teacher and the role of the student in the learning process.

Attached you will find some more specific strategies for setting purpose in your classroom.Questions that set a purpose for readingSetting a purpose for reading in the content areasGradual release of responsibility defined

Thank you for all you do for the students of Trimble County!!!