Pushing RESET

I recently spent a day in the life of a 7th grader at my school. To all intents and purposes I was a new student and I shadowed a class all day. Double Social Studies- French – Maths, English and Double Art.

Our teachers are doing a great job in an education system the world over which has been geared towards an emphasis on knowledge acquisition and de-personalization. At our school we have developed and are piloting a curriculum which focuses on 7 key competencies we would like our children to have. (Below-excuse the poor quality of picture)

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We have a lot of work to do, in particular, how to tackle the issues of personalizing learning for our kids as much as possible. Helping them to learn within a framework which connects to them.  Not so much real world learning, which are often proposed by teachers as examples of how their subject relates to the ‘real’ world but THEIR WORLD learning.  If motivation is  vital to learning then we need to be finding ways of connecting to their world, family, history and culture.

Back to being a 7th grader. Apart from being told in the playground at recess that my jeans were “SO two thousand and ten” I felt accepted and cared for.

The English class focused on helping students to come up with ideas for creative writing.

What if………?  We were invited to think about.

Some of the examples the kids came up with were:

……if we eat an apple and we suddenly had super powers

……if we could go forward or back in time

Mine was…..”What if there was a school where there are no grades, no homework  and you learn about what interests you?”

Thunderous applause in the classroom and comments which revolved around the absurdity of the idea/impossible/crazy etc. (as if it were more crazy etc. than the first two examples!)

Well it’s not absurd. Scroll down this blog page and play yourself the Dennis Littky at TedXNYEd clip to see a system being used which works.

We may not be able to change the schools we are part of that radically or quickly overnight, but something to aim at…..possible….?  YES.

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One thought on “Pushing RESET

  1. 18izquna

    I read the blog post and I think it is very interesting. I think that no homework is a good idea. Reasons: 1. Kids don’t learn much from homework. They just do it because they have to. 2.Kids already spend about 7-8 hours in school five days a week and they want to have fun and relax in the afternoons.3. Not always the homework is done. I also think that grades are not necessary. Grades tell you how much you know about something. I think its not necessary to get a grade, but to discuss about the subject and you yourself can tell if you know enough or if you want to study more. Also grades can make people very happy but very unhappy too. No grades would make every ones life simpler. Kids wouldn’t have to worry about tests, exams and others. Sometimes people know more than they can show. They have it in their heads, but they can’t think of a way to express them selves so that other people understand what they are saying, since people see thing from different angles. This sometimes gives kids difficulties to answer specific questions on tests even though they know the answer. Test might also stress kids before they come and after too. Overall, homework and grades also have a positive side, but from my point-of-view they can sometimes be more negative than positive.
    Now, if there were a school that taught you about your interests, I would like to be taught the following: 1 About science (gravity, laws of physics, planets, world…) 2 Politics, historical events, wars, ‘gods’… 3 Drama, acting techniques 4 famous artists and paintings 5 countries and cultures.

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