Edublog: Uncovering Wisdom through Pedagogy

Concept-based Instruction in an English Classroom

Subject English Language
Level: Year 1
Name of teacher Jassie Teo
Topic Grammar
Macro-concept 1.     Systems have elements that interact with each other to perform a function.

2.     Systems are composed of sub-systems.

3.     Systems follow rules.


Enduring Understanding Language codifies concepts and relationships.
Essential Questions


Guiding questions



●      What are the components of the English language?


●      How does language function as a system?

●      Can meaning be conveyed without language?


●      Does language always have to follow the norm to communicate meaning?              

Curricular or Pedagogical Focus / Lens Concept-Based Instruction

The Grammar Unit was planned with the aim of allowing students to appreciate how the macro-concept of Systems operates in the English Language grammar. The lessons in the unit move progressively from meaning at the morpheme level to the sentential level, with a focus on how the elements within each level of meaning interact to convey meaning. This second lesson of the unit that I have described below focuses on how meaning is conveyed at the phrasal level. (more…)

Inquiry-based Learning in a Biology Classroom

Subject Biology
Level: Year 3
Topic Photosynthesis
Macro-concept Systems
Enduring Understanding Factors can affect the rate of photosynthesis.
Essential Questions
  1. What are the factors that affect the rate of photosynthesis?
  2. Why would there be factors that limit the rate of photosynthesis?
Curricular or Pedagogical Focus / Lens Critical Thinking, Concept-Based Instruction

Prior Knowledge

Students should have acquire the following knowledge in their primary school education:

  • Plants “make food” by photosynthesis.
  • During photosynthesis, plants take in CO2 and release O2.
  • Photosynthesis requires light.

Knowledge and Skills

This inquiry-based learning is a series of four lessons, comprising of two theory and two practical lessons. The lesson plan encompasses the following skill sets:


Higher order thinking in a Social Studies lesson on National Identity

Subject: Social Studies
Level:  Y4
Topic: Singapore and Globalisation: Impact on Identity


Bloom’s taxonomy places “creating” as the highest order of thinking. In this lesson, students were given the opportunity to demonstrate their understanding of national identity by creating a product: an index to measure national identity.

“Give the pupils something to do, not something to learn; and the doing is of such a nature as to demand thinking; learning naturally results” (Dewey, 1916). (more…)

Insights into Inquiry-based Learning by an ex-student

I am a former student who graduated from Raffles Girls’ Schoool (RGS) in 2013. Recently, I had the opportunity to intern at RGS for 2 months.

During my stint there, my Geography teacher, Mrs Eriyanty Mohammad, invited me to join her and Ms Nurashikin for an excursion with some Year 1 students. The excursion to Peninsula Plaza was for the Regional Studies Programme (RSP) students to gain some insights into the Burmese community in Singapore. I jumped at the chance almost immediately. I fondly remember going for such excursions while I was a student and my RSP teachers had also taken us to Golden Mile Complex and Lucky Plaza for us to have a better understanding of some foreign communities in Singapore. (more…)

World Educational Leadership Summit 2016: Points to Ponder

In early April 2016, I attended the World Educational Summit, where I heard many thought leaders speak about learning.

I would like to share 3 main ideas that I pondered over as I listened to the speakers:

  1. Emphasis on order and objectivity in curriculum practices.

Dr Eric Mazur noted how in the name of reliability and fairness, schools tend to value assessment structures that enable order and predictability. But problem-solving in a real world occurs amidst erratic and dynamic conditions. Are we then imposing artificiality in learning? Dr Mazur even asserted that the focus on reliability and fairness tilts assessment design to one that favours lower order thinking because complex, higher order thinking may not be adequately captured through standard assessment settings.

So, how do we address this issue? (more…)

Differentiated Instruction in a Mathematics Classroom

Subject Mathematics
Level: Year 3
Topic Graphs of Exponential Functions
Macro-concept Model
Enduring Understanding Models communicate mathematical patterns in quantitative relationships.
Essential Question Can all patterns in quantitative relationships be represented?
Curricular or Pedagogical Focus / Lens Differentiation

A class of 28 students has completed their study on rules of indices before introducing them to the graphs of exponential functions. Based on the students’ performance in the previous formative assessments and assignments, part of the lesson preparation involves splitting the class into 2 groups according to their perceived readiness in manipulating algebraic expressions by using rules of indices.

After establishing the basic knowledge of exponential graphs, the process of differentiated instruction is demonstrated in two ways: student choice and grouping by readiness.


Concept-Based Instruction in a Higher Chinese classroom

Subject Higher Chinese
Level: Year 4
Topic Loyalty
Macro-concept System
Enduring Understanding 1) Loyalty forms the basis of any civilised and humane system of morals.

2) “Loyalty” can only be seen as a virtue if the object of loyalty is good.

Essential Questions 1)Does modern society continue to value loyalty?

2) What is “loyalty” as a virtue?

3) Is there a need for a moral basis to “loyalty”?

Curricular or Pedagogical Focus / Lens Concept-Based Instruction


Students are required to learn about Yue Fei and “Man Jiang Hong” Poem that he wrote. Through discussing the essential questions, the students will re-define the notion of loyalty in modern context.



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