5313,  Masters - ADL

Aligning Outcomes, Assessment and Activities

Most people take a vacation by thinking about what they would like to experience on vacation. The vast majority of people do not hop in a car and just pick a direction, start driving, and hope for the time of their life.

“By failing to plan, you are preparing to fail” – H.K. Williams

(quoteresearch, 2019)

Fink’s writings show us that only creating a plan is not the most important part of preparing a lesson. However, the most important aspect of lesson planning is understanding the end results and preparing for those achievements. If I wanted to go on vacation with my friends, but I did not consider what I wanted to do while there, nor tell anyone where we were going, I may end up with a friend at a resort on a beach in ski gear. It is vital that we explain to ourselves what we want for our learners, then explain that concept to our colleagues, and finally our learners themselves. During my assignment this week, I walked through a unit on terrestrial planets, but I started the whole planning process with what is known as a BHAG. Even though Fink does not use this method it is a great way to laser focus the end results you want for your students. In 1994 Collins & Porras developed the concept of a BHAG, which stands for “Big Hairy Audacious Goal.” This goal is written to rally people and drive progress. These goals have been used in the corporate world for decades but should not be relegated to that realm only.  I feel that this is an integral aspect to lesson planning that should not be neglected any longer.  

Unit – Terrestrial Planets


To inspire/empower learners school-wide/grade-wide to become self-directed and confident problem solvers to solve real-world challenges.


Fink, L.D. (2003) A Self-Directed Guide to Designing Courses for Significant Learning. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass.

Harapnuik, D. (2016, June 16). Mapping Your Learner’s Journey. Harapnuik.org. Retrieved February 12, 2023, from https://www.harapnuik.org/?p=6420

quoteresearch, A. (2019, September 9). If you fail to prepare you are preparing to fail. Quote Investigator. Retrieved February 12, 2023, from https://quoteinvestigator.com/2018/07/08/plan/

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