Identify a concept that is often misunderstood in your discipline.

Next, extend your thinking on this misunderstood concept. Can you think of an analogy that can help make the concept make sense to students? Does this analogy take into account where students are coming from in their previous experiences? Or how could you break that concept down into bite-size chunks so your students can more easily digest that harder-to-acquire information?

Now, re-state your misunderstood concept and then identify and expand on how you would explain your concept through an analogy.

Explain the analogy in writing and include a visual metaphorical representation of this analogy (perhaps use the Curator Module Consider This activity as a guide to finding an image).

This activity is part of the Prior Knowledge section of the Teacher for Learning Module.

Complete This Activity

After you complete this activity please share a link to it and a description so it can be added to the responses below. You can add it directly to this site.

Add A Response

Resources for this Activity

Have you created a helpful guide or do you know one that might help others complete this activity? You can share a resource if it is available at a public URL. .

Add a Resource

129 Responses for this Activity

  • Misunderstood activity
    by Sheryl Third (@Sheryl)

    As a Early Childhood Educator and a Professor in the Early Childhood Education Program the notion of play and learning is often misunderstood. With the increase in international students one’s own school experience also plays a role in their own past experience with play and learning. For some that is unlearning how we view teaching more… »

  • Misunderstanding
    by Darby Anderson (@danderson)

    As a Cooperative Education Consultant and Career Practitioner students struggle with the concept of ‘targeting’ their resume to the job/industry.  They don’t necessarily understand or appreciate the importance of this practice in order to engage the reader (employer).  If the resume, through relevance and language, does not engage the reader (employer), it is highly unlikely more… »

  • Misunderstood: Communication has occured
    by Patrick Moore (@patrick.moore)

    The concept that I believe is most misunderstood in my discipline is ‘understanding.’ Most people believe that simply communicating your message is sufficient for understanding. George Bernard Shaw once said that “The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.” Just because something is communicated well doesn’t mean that it more… »

  • Misunderstood – Resume Skills Summary
    by Jennifer Lee (@jslee)

    As a career practitioner one of the most often misunderstood concepts I encounter is a misunderstanding of the importance of targeting the Skills (or Summary, or Highlights or Professional Profile, or whatever they choose to call it) section of a resume to each employer. Frequently individuals choose generic skills they believe themselves to possess and more… »

  • Misunderstood-Hypothesis Testing
    by Valerie Watts (@vwatts)

    The most misunderstood, and difficult, concept for students studying statistics to understand is hypothesis testing. In statistics, we want to study populations.  Because populations are very large and difficult to study, we use information from a sample taken from the population to draw conclusions about the population.  In particular, we want to test claims about more… »

  • Misunderstanding the Value of Conflict
    by Rachel Schultz (@Rachel Schultz)

    A concept that is frequently misunderstood in the experiential Group Dynamics course is the value of productive conflict. Students’ experience with conflict in the past may have left them with negative impressions about the consequences of tension or conflict, and many try to avoid it. The mainstream media doesn’t do a great job of presenting more… »

  • Misunderstood – let’s try that again!
    by Jenn Harren (@j_harren)

    I teach Human Resources (HR) courses.  One concept that is important is that scientific (objective) methods of Recruitment and Selection tools and techniques are superior based on research to practice-based (subjective) methods.  The impact of not understanding this concept is that students may become HR Professionals that use methods that could discriminate against certain job more… »

  • Misunderstood
    by Jenn Harren (@j_harren)

    I teach in the business school, specifically Human Resources (HR) courses.  One concept that is important is that scientific (objective) methods of Recruitment and Selection tools and techniques are superior based on research to practice-based (subjective) methods.  The impact of not understanding this concept is that students may become HR Professionals that use methods that more… »

  • Understanding the ‘Why’
    by Hoshedar Batliwalla (@hbatliwalla)

    I often ask learners to begin any form of learning by understanding the ‘why’, before deep diving into any kind of discussion or learning any kind of topic. This short video by Simon Sinek is a great resource to teach students to start with the ‘why’ and eliminate assumptions or misconceptions made by themselves or more… »

  • Misunderstood Activity by Brian (with proper link)
    by Brian Percheson (@bpercheson)

    I remember teaching Grade 9 Science once in Manitoba and we had to use Ontario textbooks to demonstrate biodiversity.  Unfortunately, for our Manitoba students, they had to identify with biotic and abiotic components within an ecosystem like maple leaf trees and the Great Lakes.  Our Manitoba students, therefore, learnt things about Ontario’s ecosystem; however, the more… »

    1 Resource for this Activity

    Creative Commons License
    This work by Ontario Extend is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

    2 Responses to “Misunderstood”

    1. Martina Kolodzey

      I teach CLB 3 4, and there are certain things that a level four student should be able to do that a level three student isn’t expected to do just yet. For both cases, the concept of questions is very difficult both in terms of answering and creating questions. In level three, it is expected that a student can read a short passage and answer simple comprehension questions. What I find is that my students will answer the question by rewriting the sentence from the text that contains key words from the question. That means that their answer will likely include much more information than needed to answer the question. The problem with them doing this is that I can see that they know how to find the answer, but I cannot see if they know what the answer actually is. For example, the question might be: When is Theresa’s doctor’s appointment? The sentence they choose to answer the question with says: Theresa must remember to bring her health card to her doctor’s appointment at 3pm. The student has taken the first step in finding the answer in the text, but didn’t take the second step in giving just the information that was asked for. The level four student, needs to be able to formulate questions. This is another concept that is difficult, but works along the same lines. My solution takes a few steps.
      1. Make sure the students know all the question words and what the question words are looking for, who – a person, what – a thing or concept, where – a place, etc.
      2. Read a short text.
      3. Look at the comprehension questions.
      4. First, underline the answers in the text, write which number question they correspond with.
      5. Look at the wording of the question. Rearrange the wording of the question to start answering the text.
      6. Go back to the underlined text for that question, and take only the what you need to answer the question.
      7. Do this for a number of questions.
      8. Part two – Take a full sentence from the text.
      9. Figure out what questions we can ask, for example: who, what, where, etc…
      10. Use the previous example on how to write the answer to the question, and reverse it to show how to formulate the question.



    1.  Heading Out on Our Learny Journey – Not-So-Distant Learning

    Leave a Reply

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *