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Lesson Quality Checklist

The following guidelines were devised by members of CSE@SSL and Exploratorium teams, led by Dr. Linda Shore.

The guidelines are open to discussion and revision, but we hope they will help users to keep lesson development efforts focussed on a consistent set of criteria. Use them along with your own classroom "test flights" to give your lesson or resource some final polishing before Web publication.

First, some general questions...

1. How do you think another teacher would react to the lesson? Is it interesting, motivating, and clear?

2. Is the lesson clearly written and easy for you to follow? Were the various parts well defined? Could you navigate the Web pages easily?

3. Have you chosen an appropriate grade level? Does the lesson assume any (age appropriate) prior knowledge that students might not have? If so, is adequate background provided or referenced?

4. Does the lesson deal with familiar material? Does the lesson provide teachers with enough background and introductory information?

5. Are students given an opportunity to express and examine their existing science beliefs and models?

6. Does the lesson adhere to State and National science curriculum standards/frame-works?

7. Could this lesson be adapted to be more appealing or successful with:

  • students in general
  • minority students, bilingual students
  • others typically underrepresented in the sciences?

Questions concerning "teachability"...

8. Does the write up provide the instructor with enough concrete details to prepare for teaching this unit? For example, are there: clearly stated goals and objectives, list of materials, time estimates, handouts for students? If not, what information should be added?

9. Procedure: Have you given clear guidelines on how a teacher would go about doing this activity with a class? Considerations might include:

  • How to prepare students
  • How and when to use Internet resources and other forms of technology
  • Specific instructions for teachers
  • Instructions for students
  • Suggested activities that teacher participates in
  • What extensions and additional activities might be considered?

10. Does the lesson include ways for the teacher to monitor and evaluate student progress?
Does the lesson provide a way for students to reflect on what they are learning?

11. Is the lesson format sufficiently flexible to accommodate various connectivity conditions and classroom situations? Can students work easily in groups, or with limited access to computers? Were there suggestions for optional extensions?

Questions concerning student reactions...

12. What aspects of the lesson were, or what aspects do you expect to be particularly motivating or effective for students?

13. Are there any aspects of the lesson that might frustrate students?

14. What concepts and scientific process skills will students learn from this lesson? How could this lesson be made more effective in teaching science concepts and critical thinking skills

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