By Shelley Wright, Canadian PLP cohort

Sunday evening I made an important, and now irrevocable, decision.  Even though I understand the importance of student-centred learning,  I haven’t switched to this approach in my Bio 30 class.  I keep thinking, “I’ll do it next year.”  Finally, I stopped and asked, “Why am I not changing this now?”

The bottom line is fear. The biggest fear, of course, being my students not learning everything they are supposed to.  But I am convicted repeatedly by a statement Shawna Stangel made in her blog “…the days of covering must come to an end. If you need to cover something please get a tarp or a sheet, but don’t use that word in reference to teaching and learning any more.” I agree.

The funny thing is, in the end, I think this way will actually be more time efficient, once they develop the skills they need.

This week we’re starting a new unit, a six-week stretch on human anatomy, starting with the brain.  The perfect time for a change.  So I took the plunge.

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Sheryl is the co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Powerful Learning Practice. She works with schools and districts from around the world helping them to infuse technology into their curriculums and by leading other digital conversion efforts. Sheryl also consults with governments, educational organizations and non-profits in development of their various professional learning initiatives. Sheryl is a sought-after presenter at national and international events, speaking on topics related to digital and online learning, teacher and educational leadership, online community building, and other educational issues impacting children of poverty. Sheryl served on the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) Board of Directors for six years. She co-authored The Connected Educator: Learning and Leading in a Digital Age with Lani Ritter Hall. Sheryl has four children and four grandsons, Luke, Logan, Levi and Tanner and a trio of dachshunds. You can find out more on her blog and on Twitter @snbeach.

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