Lesson Planning

Automata project

Bringing the technical world to life

A quick visit to Ian Ritchies class. He and Andrée Anne Coté had secondary 2 students working on a hands-on project whereby students had to to act like engineers by designing a moving object (toy). This obliged the students to make use of their knowledge of materials, constraints, links, mechanisms and tools. The students "bought" the materials they need as they went through a manufacturing process using "Automata Dollars" therefore were subjected to financial constraints too.


Thanks to Andrée-Anne Coté and Susan Hildebrant for making this possible.

Click here for the student booklet.

Click here for the teacher booklet (coming soon).

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The 7 E's of Lesson Planning

The 7 E's lesson planning strategy is an expansion of the 5 E's model. I picked this up after reading this NSTA article.

The model makes good use of assessment for learning and progresses from guided inquiry to explicit instruction to a final stage where the students are expected to transfer their learning.



Click here for a list of formative assessment techniques/strategies.




the Lab Report

The traditional lab report has predefined sections to be filled out like in the image to the left. While there is still room in our teaching for this style, here is an article from NSTA that I found that has alternative ideas on lab reports.


The lab is an opportunity for students think and act like scientists. Let them be creative in their question-asking and problem solving. While the teacher can help them pose a good (science) question, they should have the opportunity to design their own experiments.


Help students write better lab reports with a well thought out checklist as explained in this NSTA article.


LabWrite is a web app that helps students write better lab reports.