Tuesday, March 27, 2012
Thursday, March 22, 2012
I've been thinking about teaching philosophy and pedagogy lately, and this article echos many of the characteristics of 21st century education I value personally: learned centered classrooms; focusing on skills and outcomes that are relevant to our students and our society; seeking student engagement and creating learning opportunities to allow students to get engaged; allowing the learning process to be unique to the learner; using formative assessment to shape the learning process; and allowing creative expression of learning.
Friday, March 16, 2012
This question will require ongoing assessment in years to come as education programs change and evolve in keeping with our revolving culture and society. Many aspects of a 21st Century curriculum, I believe, need to be addressed directly.
At the back of my Math class I have posters for each of the skills we "learn" in Math: skills like creativity and problem solving, mathematical reasoning, estimation and mental mathematics, using technology, making connections... and there are more. So I ask - shouldn't these be front of the room skills? Shouldn't we spent more time worrying about these skills and less time worrying about exactly how many questions a student just got correct or incorrect?
I believe there are many other classroom trends that are correlated to this continuum. At one end we find teachers burdened by a focus on management, at the other we find teachers enjoying setting up opportunities to motivate students. At one end we view students as recipients of information, at the other the are owners of information.
A major challenge with the continuum seems to be pinpointing where the best learning is occurring. I think all educators will agree they've had days where quality learning has occurred at all points on the continuum.
One more question that comes to my mind is what will the continuum look like when today's Kindergartners hit High School, and will they be ready? Will we?
Thursday, March 15, 2012
I also really appreciate the comment that "educators recognize that there is pedagogical importance in
hooking students into searching for ideas and explanations that create both meaning and deeper knowledge". I think this is underscores the importance of the inquiry/ exploration/ problem based process.