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Name Date KWL Chart Before you begin your research list details in the first two columns. Fill in the last column after completing your research. Topic What I Want to Know What I Learned Copyright Houghton Mifflin Company. All Rights Reserved* What I Know.
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I'm sure you've heard it all before you need to activate prior knowledge students need to be active participants in their learning the advice goes on and on but how exactly are you supposed to do those things you know that the students who enter your classroom come preloaded with knowledge and a variety of experiences you completely understand that they aren't blank slates and you know that your job as a teacher is to evaluate your students background knowledge and assist them in making deep connections to new ideas and concepts but how one tool you can use for this purpose is the KWL chart a KWL chart gets its name from the three sections that make up the chart the K column stands for what students know the W represents what students want to know and the L is reserved for what students have learned this is a very useful tool that works well in any content area now when using the KWL chart it's really important that you don't put the chart before the horse haha in other words don't introduce the chart before you introduce the topic you're teaching remember the purpose of the KWL chart is to help students connect with your lesson so it's imperative that you take the time to introduce the lesson first once you've made students aware of what they'll be learning find out what they already know about the topic using the KWL that's where the what I know portion of the chart comes into play you can either create one large chart for the class and write down facts that students share or you can give students their own chart to fill out either way the what I know section is critical to the effectiveness of the chart itself because it allows students to take an inventory of any background knowledge they may have that relates to the topic this begins the process of helping students make connections and a key ingredient in making connections is curiosity the W section of the chart really shows evidence of the students curiosity because this is where they say what they want to know about the topic this is where their questions would go for example if the lesson is about the solar system one question a student may pose for this section could be why isn't Pluto a planet anymore a question like that reveals a couple things first it lets you know that the student already knows either some or all of the planets it also tells you that the student understands that Pluto used to be a planet but for some reason no longer is one as a teacher this type of question is good because it lets you know that the student is ready for a lesson that goes deeper than simply naming planets to discussing the characteristics of the planet in other words it helps you tailor the lesson to the interests and needs of your students last but definitely not least is the what I've learned section this is the section that provides you with what every teacher looks for on a daily basis evidence of learning this section allows students to make a direct connection between what they knew before...