what exactly IS a PBA?

The last 24 hours have been really intense. We were given a crash course yesterday in Enduring Understandings (EU’s) and Performance Based Assessments yesterday in Curriculum Group. I had some experience with both of these concepts based on Understanding By Design by Wiggins and McTighe from MCPS. The interesting thing about these concepts is that in a constructivist setting, as we are working in here, they take on a whole new layer of depth.

After stuffing our brain with the basics, we chose groups and were off to build a PBA. A Performance Based Assessment is the assessment of an Enduring Understanding which we based off of a Concept or Big Idea. Our group chose the big idea of “Relationships”, after debate on topics such as Communication, Equity, Social Justice, Friendship, and Organization. We worked to build our Enduring Understandings and then went for a critique session with our Lead Teachers. We had quite an intense half hour with them before shipping off to bed nervous and confused.

Today we worked for four hours based on the critiques and then worked again with our LT’s to further identify and clarify our EU’s, Knowledge/Skill, and definitions of our PBA. We had it “all wrong” at one point, but I am really pleased with the way we worked together to build a way for our students to transfer their understanding of relationships found in building of cities to interpersonal relationships among groups in which they participate. The entire Institute went to lunch exhausted, but relieved to have completed such a task.

Lunch=Vegetarian Burrito, Roast Beef sandwich with goat cheese and caramelized onions, the most tasty french fries ever, roasted zucchini and eggplant. VERY fulfilling.

MOre in a bit…

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