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Know/Need to Know

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The Know/Need-to-know strategy is commonly found in Project-based Learning (though not exclusively) and is used to establish student prior knowledge and current gaps in understanding.


Know/Need-to-know uses a simple T-chart displayed in class (or digitally if preferred) to demonstrate what students know and need to know about a topic. The strategy usually preludes a unit of student or multi-day lesson and is referenced both by teacher and students to drive the learning experience.

As a strategy to increase student voice, choice, and initiative, the teacher should use the K/NTK process in combination with other formative data to drive learning and inform instruction.

As a strategy to increase value for students, the teacher should ensure students can return to the process throughout, observing how lessons and activities addressed various “needs” and contributing new items to either side of the list.


Read more about the strategy here: “Know and need-to-know: the secret to sustained, student-led learning

Explore more resources for K/NTK at Magnify Learning.

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