Posts by Michael Niehoff
If we focus on anything but academics to start the school year - such as culture, opportunity, creativity, relationships and the “why” - we may actually produce a more academically successful student and school year. This post explores how to make that happen.
Making learning more “real” has long been a goal of those who have promoted everything from project-based learning to career technical education. Both learners and learning facilitators want learning where the ‘why’ is an integral part of the process. It’s this desire to be “real” that has now found its way into our vernacular as “authenticity”.
If you ask teachers, most will indicate that they want appreciation and recognition for their hard work. However, they will also often say that they would rather have that appreciation and recognition be an ongoing, sincere and cultural acknowledgment than an official event or days on a calendar.
If school leaders and classroom teachers recognize the collective power of their students, then it makes sense for them to give their students the chance to identify needs, challenges, and issues within their school's culture, and develop potential means of addressing them.
How can we creatively collaborate, critically think and communicate in ways that will make our world a better place to live? Letting our students practice thinking about and working on these seven big issues can present hundreds of relevant challenges that can be a big step toward that future.
Our challenge as educators is whether we walk the walk. We ask our students to collaborate, or partner, but do we truly do it ourselves? How can educators model true collaboration and partnering to our students?
Education as a whole can learn a great deal from the successes of many CTE programs. However, CTE cannot operate in isolation, and needs to learn from the best of transformative education outside of its standard practices. Mutual benefits await.
Our students will need to continually learn about and apply current developments in technology, global collaboration, market opportunities and emerging industries to win in this new economy. How do we give students both the mindset and the skillset to not only survive, but to thrive?
Today's students need their curriculum and instruction - or rather their learning experiences and performance opportunities - to allow for ideation, virtual global collaboration, design thinking, transdisciplinary practices, adaptive thinking, and cross-cultural competencies.