Chapter
8
Consider
a lesson plan you might use. Which
metacognitive skills/abilities are involved as students gain facility/knowledge
in this domain?
Here is a lesson plan I might use to teach the fundamental element of art and design: color.

One metacognitive skill used in this lesson plan is selfexplanation. By having the students paint their desired color scheme and then label and write about it, they are testing themselves and internalizing what they have learned. Most of the skills used in this lesson plan will be overt strategies because the students will be physically practicing, testing, and utilizing their knowledge. After the lesson is complete, the students could write a summary of the material they studied which would in turn enhance their memorization of the various components of color theory. In the beginning of the lesson, while the teacher is presenting the material, the students could take detailed notes about the presentation. What is most important for the students to comprehend would be highlighted accordingly so that the students could identify the important information.
Think
of an activity or lesson component that explicitly teaches one or more
metacognitive and one or more problem solving skills.
Writing the specific name of the color scheme on the back of the painting and providing a description would teach the students the metacognitive skill of creating a summary. This would enhance the students learning and memory and help them distinguish between important and unimportant information. A problem solving skill used could be a heuristic. As the students paint their pieces, they would soon come to realize which colors created a specific color scheme and which are successful and which are unsuccessful. Asking students to create a list of potential changes they would make to create a more successful color scheme would enhance this problem solving process.
I found this website: http://cft.vanderbilt.edu/teachingguides/teachingactivities/problemsolving/ that offered some interesting insight into how to teach problem solving skills.
Below is a bit from the website that I found useful.
Teaching Problem Solving
Tips and Techniques
Communicate
 Have students identify specific problems, difficulties, or confusions. Don’t waste time working through problems that students already understand.
 If students are unable to articulate their concerns, determine where they are having trouble by asking them to identify the specific concepts or principles associated with the problem.
 Make students articulate their problem solving process.
 In a oneonone tutoring session, ask the student to work his/her problem out loud. This slows down the thinking process, making it more accurate and allowing you to access understanding.
 When working with larger groups you can ask students to provide a written“twocolumn solution.” Have students write up their solution to a problem by putting all their calculations in one column and all of their reasoning (in complete sentences) in the other column. This helps them to think critically about their own problem solving and helps you to more easily identify where they may be having problems.
TwoColumn Solution (Math)
TwoColumn Solution (Physics)
Encourage Independence
 Model the problem solving process rather than just giving students the answer. As you work through the problem, consider how a novice might struggle with the concepts and make your thinking clear
 Have students work through problems on their own. Ask directing questions or give helpful suggestions, but provide only minimal assistance and only when needed to overcome obstacles.
 Don’t fear group work! Students can frequently help each other, and talking about a problem helps them think more critically about the steps needed to solve the problem. Additionally, group work helps students realize that problems often have multiple solution strategies, some that might be more effective than others
Be sensitive
 Frequently, when working problems, students are unsure of themselves. This lack of confidence may hamper their learning. It is important to recognize this when students come to us for help, and to give each student some feeling of mastery. Do this by providing positive reinforcement to let students know when they have mastered a new concept or skill.
Encourage Thoroughness and Patience
 Try to communicate that the process is more important than the answer so that the student learns that it is OK to not have an instant solution. This is learned through your acceptance of his/her pace of doing things, through your refusal to let anxiety pressure you into giving the right answer, and through your example of problem solving through a stepby step process.
Expert vs. Novice Problem Solvers
Experts (teachers) in a particular field are often so fluent in solving problems from that field that they can find it difficult to articulate the problem solving principles and strategies they use to novices (students) in their field because these principles and strategies are second nature to the expert. To teach students problem solving skills, a teacher should be aware of principles and strategies of good problem solving in his or her discipline.
The mathematician George Polya captured the problem solving principles and strategies he used in his discipline in the book How to Solve It: A New Aspect of Mathematical Method(Princeton University Press, 1957). The book includes a summary of Polya’s problem solving heuristic as well as advice on the teaching of problem solving.
“The teacher should put himself in the student’s place, he should see the student’s case, he should try to understand what is going on in the student’s mind, and ask a question or indicate a step that could have occurred to the student himself.”
– George Polya, How to Solve It

I really like your lesson. The lesson covers all the material very well and I think that students would be able to fully understand the concepts. I like that you use a lot of hands on practices and that in the end the students put information on the back of the painting so they can revisit it later if necessary. I think that would really help me remember the concept better.
ReplyDeleteYour blogs are always very well done. I like the way you incorporate outside sources. I struggle with that so thank you for providing a good example of how to accomplish that.