Guest Author, Keith Hadden – I’m always concerned when I hear that a particular student who may have cognitive difficulties will learn, but only at the bottom levels of the taxonomy. I’m quite sure Bloom never intended the top levels of his taxonomy to be sacred ground, accessible only to those a standard deviation or two above normal. All students, for example, regardless of IQ, regularly make evaluations about their [ Read More ]
Guest Author, Josh Hill – In my previous posts I have been a bit antagonistic as I chastised the decontextualized learning that traditionally takes place in schools and objected to the superficial motivational schemes that fail to “engage” students. And although I want this blog to have a critical edge I am reminded of the wisdom of Ralph Waldo Emerson who reflected that “criticism should not be querulous and wasting, all knife and root-puller, but guiding, instructive, inspiring”… So in my next series of posts I am taking the tact of a dreamer and will take a stab at articulating a definition of authentic instruction, and illustrate this vision with a few real world exemplars.
Guest Author, John Burger – At the end of my first blog, I concluded that building general leadership capacity is dependent on a set of necessary conditions. This blog will explore one of those conditions, i.e. the opportunities and challenges in making data and evidence-informed decision-making a central component of leadership networked across all levels of the education system. The key question we’ll consider is, what should value-added data available [ Read More ]
Guest Author: Lauren Curry – Although I operate daily with the goal of living through the potential disaster zone of middle school Foods – as my readers surely know by now – this is not quite the reasonable, measurable, or purposeful goal with which we are all concerned here. One of my goals in my Teacher Professional Growth Plan (TPGP), aligned with Goal 4 of Rocky View’s current Three Year [ Read More ]
Guest Author, Nancy Lake – “Mom! Mom! Do you want to see our school project? I’m working on it with Jordan and Avery.” These were the words out of my eleven-year old as he rushed in the door.
“Sure…” He had nothing in his hands, and thankfully, his friends weren’t with him this time as I didn’t have any “good food” (cookies) to offer them today. “Where is it? Is it in your back-pack?”
“No…it’s on the computer,” he replied. I expected him to get his flash drive to show me. “It’s in the cloud Mom, on Google Docs.”
The cloud? Google Docs? What was he talking about? Perhaps you’ve had this conversation with your own child…
Guest Author: Todd Kiernan, Principal of Learning, Rocky View Schools During the past school year, RVS administrators have been planning for the largest High School in the division. Where is it to be located? Specifically, it will exist online and in every existing high school within the division. It will exist in the homes of students, and any structure or space with internet access. It will exist 24 hours a [ Read More ]
Guest Author, Josh Hill – In his book Drive Dan Pink re-examines motivation and I believe that his findings have significant implications for education. Pink presents comprehensive research that demonstrates that for simple straightforward tasks if, then rewards, i.e. “the dangling carrot,” work as an effective motivator, however when a task requires some conceptual creative thinking those kind of motivators don’t work. He contends that when a task requires cognitive skill the three critical factors that lead to engagement and better performance are: autonomy, the desire to be self-directed; mastery, the urge to get better at stuff; and purpose, the yearning to make a contribution to something meaningful.
Guest Author: Keith Hadden – As our classrooms become more authentic learning environments, and as our 21st century learners pose new problems and prepare to solve problems that don’t yet exist, what is the role of the parent? Much like 21st century teachers, 21st century parents need to learn to give up control. Parents can no longer be looking for the answer sheets so they can help their child get [ Read More ]
Guest Author: Keith Hadden – I wonder if, in mid-century, our current 21st century learners will echo Paul Simon’s 1973 lament: “When I think back on all the crap I learned in high school, it’s a wonder I can think at all.” I also wonder if our elementary and middle school students might make similar protestations. I’m hopeful that we’re making progress in making schooling relevant, some 80 years after [ Read More ]
Guest Author, Deb Rougeau-Bell. As a school leader and parent, I am passionate about raising kids who are environmental stewards and global citizens. However, the importance of why students need to become global stewards has never been portrayed so profoundly to me than through a story shared by Craig Kielburger at the Global, Environmental and Outdoor Education Conference in Canmore last May. Craig told us the story of being invited [ Read More ]