Orbital Studies

How does it work?

Orbital studies can be done individually or in small groups. They are usually done in middle years to high school classrooms and are short term (3-6 weeks). Students are able to choose their own topic that orbits around the curriculum. Once the students have completed their investigation, they present it to five of their classmates for 10-20 minutes using a display or demonstration; they also have a 1 page handout for their audience.

How Do You Assess It?

The student and teacher collaborates together to form a grading system in the form of a rubric.

Common Misconceptions?

-Teachers do not assist students with their investigation
Teachers are still present in their students investigation, they are monitoring their students, coach them for high-quality outcomes, as well as ensure they are on task.

-Students will not put lots of effort into their work as it is a research project.
Students are energized to work on their project since they were able to choose their own topic; they have the most interest in it.


The Differentiated Classroom Responding to the Needs of All Learners, By Carol Ann Tomlinson