Thinking Deeply about Depth of Knowledge
Robert Kaplinsky has been doing great work on depth of knowledge for years now. In short, depth of knowledge is a way of classifying math problems based on the level of thought required to solve them. This post from 2014, in which he shares some wonderful videos of students solving problems at various depths of knowledge, is an excellent summary of the big idea.
Robert isn’t resting on his laurels, though. Instead, he is still thinking deeply about DoK and refining his own understanding of how to evaluate math problems using this framework. In his most recent post, Robert talks about shallowness of knowledge. In other words, what is the least amount of thinking that a student can do to get the right answer? Students tend to initially engage with math problems on a superficial level no matter their depth of knowledge, so it’s important to find problems that can’t be solved on a first pass.
If you’ve ever sat through a PD session on depth of knowledge and had trouble wrapping your head around what it looks like in a classroom, give Robert’s blog a read.
Written by Kent Haines (@KentHaines)