How do you know what you know?

March Concept
Life’s problems are complex, but too often we jump to easy conclusions — without critically evaluating how we arrived at them. This month, Synthesis sessions will focus on first principles analysis, which breaks down complex problems into their simplest components, an epistemological journey from what you think you know … to knowing what you know.
Here's how we're going to do it:
Week 1: Mental Models
Students play a new version of an old game. How will they respond to new information: update their old mental model or build a new one from first principles?
Week 2: Testable Questions
When facing a novel problem, asking the right questions is the first step in building knowledge — and it’s harder than it seems.
Week 3: Refutation
Students analyze the blind spots in their mental models so they can build a more robust understanding of the challenge at hand.
Week 4: Action
In the culminating experience, students test their new understanding in a round-robin tournament. Are their mental models sufficient to maintain a dominant strategy and overcome saboteurs?
Process > Product
What if students don’t have 100% perfect understanding? That’s okay. The focus this month is not on the product of learning — wins and losses are not the point. Instead, the focus is on the process of learning: how students move through complexity and uncertainty into understanding.

What does success look like this month? Your student having the tools to feel confident learning anything.
What you can do:
Looking for more ways to dive deeper into first principles? Explore the questions and activities outlined on our page.

You can also watch the webinar below to learn more about how we'll explore first principles with your student.