Modeling Instruction

This week as well as the following week I am participating in a modeling instruction workshop. This has been helpful for generating a clearer picture of how I think the Design Tech High School physics curriculum might work out. The modeling approach offers students a great degree of involvement that I believe will mesh well with the design thinking focus of the school. I only hope that I can make the online resources which are meant to supplement the course beneficial to the modeling philosophy.  


I plan on continuing to log my progress as it becomes more flushed out and will share documents as I complete them. For now I have a basic outline of how I believe the sequence of each unit will function.  

First, students will do a launch activity to help them develop interest and generate “need to knows” for the topic at hand. The modeling paradigm labs seem to be a great fit here.  

Next students will be released to work at their own pace with ck-12 as an online framework to store materials. Using ck-12’s existing framework of an online textbook (that I plan to make some modifications to), videos, quizzes, and other resources students will be able to further their basic understanding of the topic. I hope to include practice worksheets here and am still thinking of whether to try to do these electronically or in a physical binder. Once students feel confident they will attempt an online quiz that will be used as a progress monitoring tool. Students will have schedules developed for them based on how well they perform. (I am still trying to find the best way to do the online quizzing as ck-12 only has one variation). For more complex units I will plan to schedule tutorial sessions with students where they will be do problem solving sessions utilizing whiteboard discussion that is an essential part of modeling.  

Lastly, once students have proven themselves to be successful on the worksheets, quizzes, and tutorial sessions they will be able to sit for a performance assessment that will be used to judge whether they have developed a mastery level of comprehension on the topic. The modeling instruction curriculum provides quality assessments that can be used for this purpose.  


Overall I am very pleased with all the resources I am gathering this week and now have the difficult task of trying to make it into a curriculum that I think will work.  




Hello all,

My name is Ryan Clark and I am a high school physics teacher with a passion for constantly challenging myself to develop better ways to challenge and educate my students. This next year I will be starting a new position at a new charter being developed known as Design Tech High School. I will be utilizing the CK-12 platform, standards based assessment, modeling instruction, flexible scheduling,  and data interpretation to develop the most dynamic and student responsible experience in my classroom. I will try to post weekly blog updates to share my progress and reflect upon my practice. I hope that this blog helps to promote discussion based on these practices and general education reform.

Looking forward to whats next,