As a teacher, I will always strive to find ways to have my students develop a deeper understanding of what we are learning. In order for students to develop a deeper understanding they have to move beyond knowledge of a topic. When a student has knowledge of a topic they may be able to recall specific facts or demonstrate a specific skill. However, when a student has a deeper understanding they can explain, find evidence, provide examples, generalize, apply, and represent information in a new way (Perkins & Blythe).
Teachers can create learning activities that allow students to make connections, activate their schema, and make new connections. Teachers need to create activities in which students can demonstrate their understanding, and therefore, deepen their understanding and make generalizations.
Perkins, David and Tina Blythe. “Putting Understanding Up Front. Educational Leadership. Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development. Used with permission. Retrieved from http://www.learner.org/workshops/socialstudies/pdf/session2/2.UnderstandingUpFront.pdf