Carefully crafted curriculum
During the first week of every MAPPEN unit, students are immersed in the big-picture concept into which they will be inquiring . Immersion tasks often include a video or hands-on experience that provide opportunities to pique student's curiosity, allow for a sharing of ideas and encourage clarifying questions.
Students undertake a pretest to determine what they already know about the content and skills they will be learning during the unit. These tests can be repeated at the end of the learning sequence to monitor student progress.
Introducing the Unit
Built into the first week of each unit, students are provided with an overview of what they will be doing. Students read through project sheets and rubrics and are prompted to ask clarifying questions. From year one onwards, students begin a reflective journal by completing the following sentence; "The thing I am most looking forward to doing in this unit is... because..."
From this point in each unit, students complete a guided reflection at the end of each lesson.
Habits of Mind
During each unit, students are introduced to two Habits of Mind. They learn the focus of each habit and have an opportunity to practise it within the context of the content that they are learning. Links to these habits are made throughout the curriculum, providing a powerful mechanism to teach thinking dispositions to students.
Students work individually or in groups as they are exposed to and practise the skills necessary to complete a rich assessment task. Students are introduced to different thinking tools and cooperative strategies and opportunities to connect what they are learning with their lives.
Throughout each unit, students are prompted to develop questions that they have about what they are learning. During week six of each eight-week unit, students from years three to six are prompted to plan and conduct an independent inquiry into one of their questions.
Rich Assessment Task
Each unit culminates in a rich assessment task. Students use rubrics to guide their progress and to assess peers. Many units include an opportunity for students to share their completed project with parents and visitors.
During the final task in each unit, students are prompted to consider how they will use what they have learnt in the future. They record a reflection, share their ideas with others or create a product to remind them of the skills and knowledge that they have gained.