Learning Activities

This section of the Design Lab houses more than 200 activities strategically selected to support young people in learning key skills. Most of the activities can be used in classrooms across multiple content areas (including math!). The Learning Strategy Buttons and Search Filters will provide you with many different ways to explore the collection, allowing you to quickly identify activities for specific instructional plans.

Metacognition

When reDesign first developed our Framework for Effective Instruction, metacognition (the process of thinking about one's thinking) was rarely discussed by educators. It is our belief that strong metacognitive skills create the gateway to deep, independent learning. These activities will help students learn to analyze the effectiveness of their learning process, their level of understanding, and their capacity to use learning strategies as a tool to tackle unfamiliar material.

Lesson Plan Stages

Common Core Instructional Shifts

Content Areas

Learning Strands

Skills

Showing 12 of 52 results:

Acronym Mnemonics

  • Investigation
  • Reflection
Through this activity students create acronyms to assist in remembering a process, list, or set of facts. This process develops students’ metacognition, and helps them to become more mindful and effective in...

Adjusting Reading Rate

  • Investigation
This activity teaches students to monitor the relative difficulty of text, and to adjust their reading rate to support comprehension of text at various levels of difficulty. The activity allows students to...

Book Pass

  • Investigation
This activity helps students to find books that they are interested in reading, and that are at an appropriate reading level. It provides a structured way for students to examine many books in a brief amount...

Brainstorm Exploration

  • Launching Into New Content
This activity is used when students need to generate and develop a topic for a writing assignment or project. It guides them towards exploring several possible topics in order to determine which topic is “...

Closed and Open Word Sorts

  • Building Background
  • Reflection
  • Synthesis
Word Sort is a simple small group activity. Students list key words from a reading or a unit of study, or alternatively, the teacher may provide a list of terms prior to the sort. Students identify the meaning...

Coding the Text

  • Investigation
  • Launching Into New Content
This activity provides an organized and time-sensitive way for students to respond in multiple ways to a text as they are reading. By using a pre-established “code,” students indicate a variety of responses...

Costa's Questioning

  • Investigation
  • Launching Into New Content
  • Reflection
  • Synthesis
This activity helps students to generate and classify questions at three levels: Gathering Information Processing Information Applying Information This framework helps to expand and structure students’...

Evaluate: Is It Plagiarism?

  • Investigation
Through this activity students will learn how to evaluate a piece of writing to determine whether or not it is plagiarized. This important skill will help them to avoid the ethical violations and disciplinary...

Expository Frameworks

  • Investigation
  • Reflection
  • Synthesis
Through this activity students learn to reorganize their notes to reflect the ideas and relationships embedded in a repertoire of common discourse patterns. Expository frameworks are the structures that...

Expository Text Structure

  • Investigation
  • Launching Into New Content
All readers are better able to understand texts that are familiar to them, both in form and in content. However, many students struggle to identify the various structures that text can take, and they are...

Frameworking

  • Investigation
  • Reflection
  • Synthesis
“Frameworks” refer to our memories of paradigmatic situations or entities we recall in order to provide a context for new information. For example, a stick figure can help us to organize our information about...

I Wonder Poem

  • Building Background
  • Launching Into New Content
This activity encourages students to develop their curiosity about a topic by asking authentic questions in the form of a poem. Using the poem “I Wonder” by Jeannie Kirby as a model, students express their own...

Pages