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Enduring Understanding: B.F. Skinner said, "Education is what survives when what has been learnt has been forgotten." This statement explains enduring understandings. In Understanding by Design, by Grant Wiggins and Jay McTighe, enduring understandings are defined as "specific inferences, based on big ideas, that have lasting value beyond the classroom." These are typically written as full-sentence statements about what, specifically, your students will understand and be able to use later on in life, even when the small details of what they learned have been forgotten.
Enduring understandings are also transferable in new situations. Wiggins and McTighe explain that, because enduring understandings are often abstract, "they require uncoverage through sustained inquiry rather than one-shot coverage. The student must come to understand or be helped to grasp the idea, as a result of work. If teachers treat an understanding like a fact, the student is unlikely to get it."
Essential Question: An essential question is "a question that lies at the heart of a subject or a curriculum (as opposed to being either trivial or leading) and promotes inquiry and uncoverage of a subject. Essential questions thus do not yield a single straightforward answer (as a leading question does) but produces different plausible responses, about which thoughtful and knowledgeable people may disagree." An essential question can be either overarching or topical (unit-specific) in scope.
(Source: Understanding by Design, by Grant P. Wiggins and Jay McTighe; ISBN: 416600353.)
Classify major physical geographic attributes of Utah.
- How have the geographic attributes of Utah changed over time?
- Identify Utah’s latitude, longitude, hemisphere, climate, natural resources, landforms, and regions using a variety of geographic tools.
- Examine the forces at work in creating the physical geography of Utah (e.g. erosion, seismic activity, climate change).
Analyze how physical geography affects human life in Utah.
- How does the physical geography of Utah affect human life?
- Identify population concentrations in the state and infer causal relationships between population and physical geography.
- Classify the distribution and use of natural resources.
- Compare the development of industry and business in Utah as it relates to its physical geography (e.g. mining, oil, agriculture, tourism).
- Make inferences about the relationships between the physical geography of Utah and the state’s communication and transportation systems (e.g. trails, roads, telegraph, rail lines).
- Examine the interactions between physical geography and public health and safety (e.g. inversions, earthquakes, flooding, fire).
- Explain how archaeology informs about the past (e.g. artifacts, ruins, excavations).
Objective 3: Analyze how human actions modify the physical environment.
- Explain how and why humans have changed the physical environment of Utah to meet their needs.
- Describe how and why humans have changed the physical environment of Utah to meet their needs (e.g. reservoirs, irrigation, climate, transportation systems and cities).
- Explain viewpoints regarding environmental issues (e.g. species protection, land use, pollution controls, mass transit, water rights, trust lands).
- Outline the development of recreation in Utah since 1900 (e.g. sports, tourism, state, and national parks).
- Make data-supported predictions about the future needs of Utahns and the natural resources that will be necessary to meet those needs.
Students will understand how Utah’s history has been shaped by many diverse people, events, and ideas.
Describe the historical and current impact of various cultural groups on Utah.
- How have various cultural groups had an impact on the development of Utah?
- Chart the routes that diverse cultural groups took from their places of origin to Utah, using maps and other resources.
- Explore points of view about life in Utah from a variety of cultural groups using primary source documents.
- Explore cultural influences from various groups found in Utah today (e.g. food, music, religion, dress, festivals).
- Identify and describe leaders from various cultures who exemplify outstanding character and life skills.
- Explain the importance of preserving cultural prehistory and history, including archaeological sites and other historic sites and artifacts.
Describe ways that Utah has changed over time.
- Explain key events that have influenced how Utah has changed over time.
- Identify key events and trends in Utah history and their significance (e.g. American Indian settlement, European exploration, Mormon settlement, westward expansion, American Indian relocation, statehood, development of industry, World War I and II).
- Compare the experiences faced by today’s immigrants with those faced by immigrants in Utah’s history.
Investigate the development of the economy in Utah.
- Why does economic development influence communities?
- Explain the relationship between supply and demand.
- Describe the role of producers and consumers.
- Identify examples of producers and consumers in the local community.
- Research the development of Utah’s economy over time.
- Identify the factors which bring about economic changes (e.g. natural resource development, new technologies, new market development, globalization, global conflicts, education).
- Examine how economic development affects communities (e.g. dams, sports, tourism, power plants, mining, etc.).
Students will understand the roles of civic life, politics, and government in the lives of Utah citizens.
Describe the responsibilities and rights of individuals in a representative government as well as in the school and community.
- What are the responsibilities and rights of individuals in government as well as in the school and community?
- Identify rights of a citizen (e.g. voting, peaceful assembly, freedom of religion).
- Identify responsibilities of a citizen (e.g. jury duty, obeying the law, paying taxes).
- Determine how and why the rights and responsibilities of various groups have varied over time (e.g. Chinese railroad workers, Greek miners, women, children, Mormons, Japanese-Americans at Topaz, American Indians, African-Americans).
- Explain how the influence and power of individuals is affected when they organize into groups.
- Describe and model ways that citizens can participate in civic responsibilities (e.g. current issue analysis, recycling, volunteering with civic organizations, letter writing).
- Contribute to and practice classroom goals, rules and responsibilities.
- Recognize and demonstrate respect for United States and Utah symbols (i.e. Pledge of Allegiance, flag etiquette).
Analyze the different ways people have organized governments in Utah to meet community needs.
- How have governments been organized to meet the needs of communities in Utah?
- Identify the forms of government found in Utah in different eras (i.e. historic and current American Indian government, State of Deseret, Utah Territory, statehoodera, present).
- Compare how these governments addressed community needs.
- Compare the roles and responsibilities of state, county, and local officials.
The Online Standards Resource pages are a collaborative project between the Utah State Board of Education and the Utah Education Network. If you would like to recommend a high quality resource, contact Robert Austin.