Learning Cycles

The learning cycle is an instructional model with five stages - the five E's implemented in the classroom to provide inquiry-based learning.

The 5 E's:


This stage:

  • Assesses prior knowledge and depth of knowledge
  • Creates and assesses interest in topic
  • Attention getting!!
  • Sample methods: video, mystery situation, personal vignette


This stage:


  • Involves the students in science process skills and problem solving skills
  • Introduces students to concept WITHOUT labeling the concept
  • Involves data collection and analysis
  • Sample methods: stations showcasing particular key characteristics of the concept


This Stage:


  • Provides students with the opportunity to develop the definition of the concept collectively
  • Provides students with the opportunity to assimilate new information involving critical thinking and communication skills
  • Sample methods:  Concept Maps, discussion of common characteristics


This stage:

  • Provides students with opportunities to apply concepts
  • Requires use of science process skills
  • Allows students to work in Cooperative Learning Groups 
  • Sample methods:  debates, simulations, research, Problem Based Learning, inquiry-invention


This stage:


  • Assesses level of understanding of concept in a formal manner by using higher levels of Bloom's Taxonomy
  • Involves ability to apply understanding to a new situation
  • Requires students to evaluate their own knowledge and understanding
  • Sample methods: traditional testing methods, alternative assessment testing methods - project Rubrics, presentations, videos, portfolio