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Completing the Inquiry Arc: Exploring Dimension 4 of the C3 Framework

This investigation is designed to explore Dimension Four of the C3 Framework and provide a rational and examples of how Dimension Four creates a richer social studies experience. 
  • Overview the C3 Framework and the Inquiry Arc. 
  • Provide a rationale, goal and purpose of Dimension Four.
  • Provide examples of what Dimension Four looks like in the classroom.
This investigation has three parts: Investigate, Create and Connect. Please be sure to do all three sections.
Think about where you are on in incorporating Dimension Four in your classroom. Consider how students are:
  • Communicating Conclusions
  • Critiquing Conclusions 
  • Taking Informed Action 
Engagement One:
Watch the Web seminar: Completing the Inquiry Arc: Exploring Dimension Four of the C3 Framework (length: 55:38) presented by the authors of this Investigation, Damon Huss and Keith Mataya.  This webinar is designed to give background about where Dimension Four fits in the C3 Framework and provides tools and examples for using Dimension Four in a social studies classroom.
Reflect and Discuss
In the webinar, you learned about the rational and importance of Dimension Four of the C3 Framework. The webinar also provided you with examples of how communicating and critiquing conclusions and taking informed action can be used to create a richer social studies experience for students.   
  • How are you currently using Dimension Four?
  • What might you add to your curriculum to incorporate the components of Dimension Four?
Engagement Two:
Read the article “The C3 Framework: A Powerful Tool for Preparing Future Generations for Informed and Engaged Civic Life” by Marshall Croddy and Peter Levine (Social Education, 78:6, 282-285). 
Reflect and Discuss
  • In what ways is the Inquiry Arc also a “Civic Learning Arc”?
  • Find three examples in the article of skills and concepts supported by Dimension 4 (D4). 
  • How do Dimensions 1–3 prepare students for Dimension 4? 
Engagement 3
Watch a clip on D4 from the video “C3 Framework: Implications for Civic Learning.” 
(*Start watching at 44.00 and stop at 49.12.)
Reflect and Discuss
  • Why is it important to take “informed action” versus simply “taking action”?
  • Find three examples in the clip of how students can take informed action and communicate conclusions.
  • How does D4 support students’ civic learning, and how does that civic learning prepare them for eventual civic participation as adults?
  • What other resources mentioned in the video are available to help students take informed action and communicate conclusions?

Post a summarizing reflection as a blog post to share the highlights of your group's dsicussions in this section.  Tag this post with "C3 Dimension Four."  Also respond to your fellow Team Leader reflection posts. 

Create: Dimension Four in the classroom

In the webinar you were introduced to Dimension Four and observed it in action.  As a team:
  • Identify how you currently get your students to communicate conclusions.  How might you improve how they communicate conclusions?
  • How could you incorporate peer critique as a part of your student’s communication of conclusions?  What tools would you need to create?
  • After you identify a project or lesson where students are communicating conclusions, create a rubric for student’s to participate in a peer critique. 
  • Using what you have learned about taking informed action, explore the links below to review resources that build student skills to support informed action. Create a written plan to incorporate one of the programs or resources into your existing curriculum. (Access C3 Framework Lesson Templates here)
Civic Action Project:
Center for Civic Education:
Facing History and Ourselves:
Generation Citizen:
National History Day :
National Geographic Network of Alliances for Geographic  Education:
Post as a blog in your Exchange group to share your lesson or rubric. Provide a description of what you chose to develop and why. Also share the context in which it will be implemented (topic, grade level, etc). Upload your document as an attachment. Tag your blog post as "C3 Dimension 4 Artifact."
What? So What? Now What?
What? Think about this investigation holistically.  What did you learn about working as a collaborative team through the lens of the CR Framework and Dimension 4?
So What? Why do you think working in a collaborative team matters, especially when creating and assessing units around the C3 Framework?  How is working collectively more powerful than in isolation?  How will you ensure your team can sustain this?  How does the Dimension Four help guide your understanding of full implementation of the C3 Framework?
Now What?  How will Dimension Four of the C3 Framework support your collaborative learning team? What will your group’s next steps be?
In your group's space on the Exchange, post a blog that speaks to your group's experience in incorporating Dimension Four and what you feel you learned from that shared process. Tag this post with "Collaboration with D4.”
In Coach-to-Coach discussion, share from one team leader to another what went well and what you would do differently next time around. Be sure to mention which investigation you are working on and provide a link to your team's space so that others can see what's been shared.