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Sioban's review of the 4Ts Model and the ISiS Model

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Sioban James
15 April 2015

4Ts Model

I found this very straightforward, possibly because in structure it most resembles my own lesson planning – activities are clearly linked to specific resources and participants.  It was very easy to see the content and how the lesson played out over the allocated time scale. 

The detail was limited which may throw an inexperienced teacher, for example, what is the ‘To do’ list in relation to choosing types of data – what is its purpose in this activity?

It is also not clear from the design if any activities are ‘critical’, that is may require more teacher input to ensure smooth flow.  As well as reminding me of my own lesson planning, this model also reminded me in some respects of critical path analysis, but minus those tasks which are deemed to be critical.  Again, this could be problematic – for example, if a method cannot be agreed upon and the teacher fails to realise the significance of this then the whole class may grind to a halt, as will the enquiry.

As a design, I would certainly use something like the 4Ts model – it is a clear way to convey a lot of detail but I do think that it would need more were someone else to follow my design.  What it does not convey is the intent of the planner and the importance of the activities, which may be needed especially by an inexperienced teacher of this activity.

Although I can see weaknesses in the design, the main advantage that I believe it conveys is the use of time (which arguably could be used to imply the significance of the various activities within the task).  Essentially, it gives a very clear idea of what needs to be done and by when provided the person delivering the lesson works with this I can see it would work to achieve its aims.

IsiS Model

I found this model to be overly complicated – firstly in its introduction, multiple levels and layers occurring, but also in the ScenEdit itself.  I could see all the information there and presumably were I able to access the lesson itself more may be more clear but from the view I had its content was not as clear for me as the 4T’s. 

There was a lack of structure in terms of timing that may cause problems, especially were a teacher inexperience, too much time spent on one activity means that others may be missed or not given the time they need.

I did like the visual aspect of the design but was not sure that this would help the lesson to flow smoothly; it did however give a clear idea as to the intent of the designer.

I can see how the ScenEdit would work for my own design but I would be less inclined to use this approach  -I could see myself spending more time putting the design together than the lesson itself would merit.  Coming from a teaching background I don’t think this view would necessarily be unpopular.  The real design comes in thinking, putting those thoughts and plans into a given design should not be an additional hurdle and I felt that using this approach would make it so.

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