When students in Matt Renwick’s afterschool enrichment club shift from a collaborative focus to a competitive drive in Minecraft, it’s time to get out the Lego maker toys and ponder some fresh questions about the relationships among digital games, hands-on projects and curriculum objectives.
K12 schools are slow to address digital literacy, says technology coach and teacher Jen Carey, when they view it as more content to cover â€“ not a cross-curricular component of teaching. In this post she suggests a better way, with several examples from her history classroom .
The kids in principal Matt Renwick’s afterschool computer club love the time they spend creating (and destroying) things in the virtual world of Minecraft. Can these experiences help students develop a “growth mindset” and essential lifelong skills like effort, persistence, and positive attitude? Renwick is beginning to think so.
After several weeks of trying out a variety of web tools and games, principal Matt Renwick and his teaching partner decide the afterschool enrichment club may need a little more focus. They propose that students learn screencasting by developing short presentations with the general theme “How to Do One Thing Really Well.” Matt highlights three students’ experiences.
Inspired by the flipped classroom model, school-based coach Jennifer Carey is flipping her tech-related professional development to provide faculty more flexible learning opportunities and just-in-time support.
Setting boundaries & limiting choices can push students to think more deeply and become more creative, says principal Matt Renwick in his 3rd report on an afterschool enrichment club. Provided, of course, the constraints don’t actually stifle creativity.