Journal Reflection Rubric

"We do not learn from experience ... we learn from reflecting on experience." John Dewey

What did you learn?
How did you learn it?
What does that tell you about yourself?
What does that tell you about learning?

Reflection Prompts


  • Entries primarily describe what the student did during class (process), the tool(s) they used, or what they made (product)
  • Lacks metacognition
  • Some variety of Reflection Types (see below), though slightly more entries of Type 1
  • Shows metacognition about the project (process or product)
  • Monitors progress toward goals and revises actions or goals as needed
  • Variety of Reflection Types (see below)
  • Shows metacognition about the project (process and product) and learning
  • Identifies and changes habits that are impediments to successful learning
  • Entries are consistently short
  • Ideas are cryptic
  • Several entries are shorter than a standard paragraph or
  • Entries make sense only to a person familiar with the author and Thinkering Studio
  • Entries average about a standard paragraph
  • Entries describe complete ideas & make sense to an outsider (C.E.R.)
  • More than 1-2 entries are missing or 1-2 entries are missing & some entries are out of order
  • All entries are present, but out of order, or all entries are in order but 1 or 2 are missing
  • All entries are present, in order
  • Journal table is no longer formatted like the template

  • Journal is properly formatted

Reflection Types

You are not expected to write Type 3 reflections only. Ideally, your reflections will include a roughly equal amount of each kind.

Type 1
  • What you did
  • What you made
  • What you learned about your tool(s) or topic
Type 2
  • What you were thinking
  • What you felt/experienced
  • What you learned about yourself
  • What strategies you used and how they worked
  • What strengths/weaknesses you noticed
  • Students assess themselves (or does this go to type 3?)
  • Evidence of a Growth Mindset?
  • Poses probing questions to self
Type 3
  • What you learned about learning
  • How this connects to other topics or the world/life in general
    • Transfer of learning from earlier projects, experiences, or classes
    • Transfer of learning from current project to another class or outside project
  • Changes in perspective about self or learning
  • Noticing patterns/connections within or across projects
  • What "Big Ideas" you experience/connected with -
    • Learning by doing
    • Hard fun
    • Taking time - the proper time for the job
    • F.A.I.L. or You can't get it right without getting it wrong
    • Iterate
    • Pay It Forward
    • Inventive Thinking
      • Adaptability, Managing Complexity, and Self-Direction
      • Curiosity, Creativity, and Risk Taking
      • Higher-Order Thinking and Sound Reasoning
    • Effective Communication
      • Teaming, Collaboration, and Interpersonal Skills
      • Personal, Social, and Civic Responsibility
      • Interactive Communication
    • High Productivity
      • Prioritizing, Planning, and Managing for Results
      • Effective Use of Real-World Tools
      • Ability to Produce Relevant, High-Quality Products


  • Claim (#edfb7d)
  • Evidence/Description (#a1ecff)
  • Reasoning (#f684eb)
  • Synthesis/Lesson Learned (#8af89c)

Sample Reflections


  • One example of a FAILure we had was not being able to post our video and find the right song for our highlight reel. It took us too long to find the song we wanted to use. That took time away from editing and finishing the video and we didn't have enough time to upload it. Next time we will try to upload the video earlier and look for a song at the beginning of our project. Another failure we had was trying to make a you tube account but then we realized if we have a google account we have a you tube account.


  • I/We learned...This week we had a better understanding on some stuff. We were having trouble on how to use the tripod. We had it unstable and we didn't know how to set it up. We also learned how to edit the videos a little better and how to transfer the videos. We learned more this week than we normally do because ….
    Type 1 - What you learned about your tool(s) or topic
  • One way I demonstrated "self-monitoring" was noticing that my group is more likely to get distracted when the three of us "work" together. When we each have different jobs to do and we know how to do them we work well. When we need to teach each other how to do things we do well. When we are all working together we sometimes get distracted by our non class discussions. But, our big problem is when we have to wait for someone to finish a job. Sometimes we even distract that person which slows us down even more.
    * Type 2 - What strengths/weaknesses you noticed
  • What patterns did you experience/see? From doing these projects, I have experienced patterns about the steps of each project in the kit. The first step is always wetting the leather. Then you trace the pattern on paper and then on the leather. Next, you stamp the leather add dye it. Finally you add any final touches you want.
    One way I/we helped someone else today was ... to critique someone in my group and give them feedback on their project. This was helpful because it can give them more creative suggestions and give them things to think about that could help them improve their project. Communicating my ideas for someone else's project can be delicate.
    * Type 2 - Noticing patterns/connections within or across projects
    * Type 3 - Effective communication - interpersonal skills