When we read about engaging students in the classroom using technology and social media, authors often leave us with the impression that this work will flow gentle as a stream. When talking about motivation and learning in school, grit is most often left out of the conversation. Yet Dan Pink tells us the best predictor of success is grit, defined as perseverance and passion for long term goals. When we found the right authentic project, my 9th grade English learners showed they had the grit to write a 200pp collaborative book!
We’re studying quadratics in my 8th grade class. Even the name can strike fear in the heart of the most competent adult. I didn’t want it to be that way for my math kids. I wrote a good lesson plan and then I let students help me modify it. Essentially, they “taught” me how to teach them better through the interaction and feedback we gave to each other during the learning process. We built the scaffold together.
Teacher and instructional leader Margaret Haviland considers the value to students of exploring creativity within limits and the need to give them license to freely pursue their creative urges within those limits.
While the theme of the second iPad Summit centered on the Apple device,” it was educational theory, not the hardware, that was the focus,” says participant and live blogger Jen Carey. “The conference gave priority attention to innovations in learning, and that’s what made it a worthwhile experience for me.”
Kansas science and math teacher Marsha Ratzel helped develop the New Generation Science Standards released this week. In this post at Voices from the Learning Revolution, she praises the development process, which fully involved classroom teachers, and says the results “are highly credible and will excite and energize our students and our profession.”
Our arts education teachers quietly go about their work, often marginalized to the ‘extras’ or the ‘fluff’ of the school program, writes Canadian teacher educator Brenda Sherry. “And yet, I would argue that they are the PBL experts that we seek!” Sherry describes several attributes of student-centered pedagogy that are common among teachers of drama, music, painting, dance and artistic crafts.