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Concept-based Instruction  

Last Updated: Jan 14, 2013 URL: Print Guide RSS UpdatesEmail Alerts
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Concept -  “A concept is a name assigned to a category of objects or ideas with common attributes. Concepts are abstract, broad, and universal. They help learners make sense of ideas and information because they help organize and distinguish entities. They help learners look at likenesses and categorize objects or ideas. Concepts are generally stated in one word (for example pattern, probability, habitat, poem, perspective, energy, fraction, number, justice). Sometimes concepts require two or three words to communicate an idea (for example, rights and responsibilities, balance of power, checks and balances, relative size, supply and demand, central tendency, point of view).” (Tomlinson & Strickland, p. 350).

 Concepts-based Teaching – “Concept-based teaching uses the essential concepts and key principles of a discipline as a primary way of organizing curriculum content…. Students define each of the concepts in their own words, and these concept definitions give students a yearlong (and, in fact, lifelong) lens… It also helps them make connections between their own lives…” (Tomlinson & Strickland, p. 350).


C. Tomlinson & C. Strickland (2005) Differentiation in Practice: A Resource Guide for Differentiating Curriculum Grades 9-12. ASCD.


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