How Do I Use The Models?


Course Title Page | Which Model Is This? | Did I Use The Right Model?

In this unit you will

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  • Read and analyze a lesson plan to identify the audience, objective and learning activity.
  • Incorporate a co-teaching model to maximize student achievement.
  • Begin thinking of the effectiveness of that model in the given context.

Thinking Job:

As you explore this unit, ask yourself the following questions to guide your thinking.

  1. How is the co-teaching model influenced by the population of students in a class?
  2. How do the lesson objectives and the learning activities influence the co-teaching model chosen?
  3. What would formative data look like for me to consider this a successful choice of co-teaching model?

In this unit, you will read about a fictitious classroom of students, and examine a lesson plan to determine which co-teaching model you would include to maximize your students' mastery of the lesson objective.

Classroom Context

Classroom Layout
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Classroom Demographics
  • 20 students in a third grade, co-taught classroom.
  • Urban, ethnically and racially diverse, Title I school.
  • 2 of the students in the classroom are classified as expanding level ELL.
  • 8 of the students have IEPs.
    • 5 students are classified with speech and language needs.
    • 2 students are classified with learning disabilities.
    • 1 student is classified with autism.
  • About 60% of the students are chronically absent.
  • There are diverse academic reading levels in the room.
    • 14 students are reading at grade level as assessed by their F&Ps.
    • 4 students are 1-2 grades below grade level as assessed by their F&Ps.
    • 2 students are 3 or more grade levels below grade level as assessed by their F&Ps.

Lesson Plan

Objective: Students will be able to identify 2 key details to support the a given main idea.

Mini-Lesson: Students will work in groups of 4 to sort given statements and identify which statements are main ideas, and which are key details that support them. Examples include, but are not limited to the following:

  • The ear is made up of 3 main sections that each have a main job. (MI)
    • Your outer ear is called the pinna and it's job is to gather sounds and send them to the middle ear. (KD)
    • The middle ear's job is to take sound waves that enter through the outer ear and deliver them as vibrations to the inner ear. (KD)
  • It is important to take good care of your ears. (MI)
    • Put sunscreen on your ears to prevent sunburn. (KD)
    • Wash the outside of your ears with soap and water to keep them clean. (KD)
  • Kittens need special care. (MI)
    • They have to be fed twice a day. (KD)
    • You have to watch them carefully because they will chew and scratch up everything. (KD)

Learning Progression:

  1. Students will do a shared read of a grade-level article.
  2. Students will be given the main idea of the article.
  3. Students will have to highlight at least 2 key details in the article that support that main idea.


  • Students will join with a partner to share and discuss the key details they found. Partner A will share first, while Partner B listens and evaluates Partner A's key details. Partners will then switch jobs.

Formative Assessment:

  • Given the following main idea, students will need to choose 2 key details that support it from a list of mixed statements.
    • Given Main Idea: It is important to come to school every day.
    • Mixed Statements
      • I walk to school in the morning, and take the bus in the afternoon.
      • If I don't come to school, I will be missing important information.
      • Cheeseburgers are my favorite school lunch.
      • I love going down the slide at recess.
      • It is hard to jump back in and learn when I have been absent a lot.

Which Model Works Best?

Considering the demographics, the classroom layout, the lesson objective and learning activities, which co-teaching model do you believe will most maximize students' ability to correctly identify key details to support a main idea?

While you consider the question above, use the following questions to help guide your choice:

  • How does the classroom layout facilitate or hinder my decision to use a particular co-teaching model?
  • Which students would benefit from which co-teaching models?
  • In a traditional, one teacher, lecture style classroom, what accommodations would any of these students need to be successful in mastering the lesson objective?

Looking forward

When you are ready, and have chosen a co-teaching model, click the link below to move into the fourth and final unit of this course!

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Did I Use The Right Model?