Performance Tasks

Based on real-world problems within the context of a career/industry

Defined STEM’s Performance Tasks are built from the UBD (Understanding By Design) framework and presents a real-world problem within the context of a career/industry. The career based videos frame the performance task, which allows the students to see the performance task through the career lens. Each performance task contains The Big Idea, Essential Questions and learning outcomes which outlines what will align with the learning in the Task.

Teachers present the performance task using the G.R.A.S.P. model Goal, Role, Audience, Situation and Products as outlined below. The culminating activities that the students produce are the products that are based on the Goal of the performance task. Each task contains between 5-8 products that represent cross curricular topics. Teachers have the option to assign any or all of the products based upon content, learning levels and/or multiple intelligences. Through the Defined STEM Performance Task Editor a teacher can edit the task, remove or add products or up-load other pertinent information to the task. Accompanied with each task are rubrics for each type of product. Teachers have the ability to download the rubric, which makes it very simple to edit the rubric to their specifications.

There are five parts to the G.R.A.S.P. model in each performance task:

  • Goal - The Goal provides the student with the outcome of the learning experience and the contextual purpose of the experience and product creation.

  • Role - The Role is meant to provide the student with the position or individual persona that they will become to accomplish the goal of the performance task. The majority of roles found within the tasks provide opportunities for students to complete real-world applications of standards-based content.

  • Audience - The Audience is the individual(s) who are interested in the findings and products that have been created. These people will make a decision based upon the products and presentations created by the individual(s) assuming the role within the performance task.

  • Situation - The Situation provides the participants with a contextual background for the task. Students will learn about the real-world application for the performance task

  • Product - The Products within each task are designed using the multiple intelligences. The products provide various opportunities for students to demonstrate understanding. Based upon each individual learner and/or individual class, the educator can make appropriate instructional decisions for product development.

Additionaly, students are able to see a student version of each performance task, tailored to their needs by the teacher. Products, Rubrics, Videos, and Exemplars can each be turned off or modified to a teacher's liking.

Below are some examples of Defined STEM's performance task library:

Here is a sample Performance Task from the Defined STEM library called: "Green Construction".

Here is a sample Performance Task from the Defined STEM library called: "Forensic Scientist".

Here is a sample Performance Task from the Defined STEM library called: "Mars Rover".

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Understanding By Design & Defined STEM

Jay McTighe

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Performance Task PD with Jay McTighe

An online professional development course that covers the following topics:

  • What is a performance task and why should we use them?
  • How do we develop authentic performance tasks?
  • How will we reliably evaluate student performance on open-ended tasks?
  • How do we teach toward success on performance tasks?
Performance Task