To help encourage conversations and dialogue about the importance of making connections to help you learn, this week's topic/question for the dinner table is: What makes learning meaningful for you? Please see link to Google Form to share your responses: Meaningful Learning (Week of 2/7/16) (This is an anonymous Google Form)
I hope this update finds everyone rested and relaxed, getting in some time to enjoy the unexpected four day weekend with all of the snow! We had some fun with the kids over the weekend - a nice balance of relaxation and activity with sports, sledding, and games - as well as enjoying Trumpet of the Swan on Saturday night. I would like to commend all of the students for their performances and thank Tracy, Kathleen, Nancy M., and Nancy D. for their tireless work, leadership, and enthusiasm to bring it all together! A big thank you to all of the parent volunteer, Stage Hands, and Matt F. and our fantastic custodial crew as well! We then enjoyed celebrating Katie's birthday as a family Sunday afternoon before watching the big game.
The excitement and planning for #DLDMedfield was inspiring, and although we were not able to experience it last Friday I do believe that our students and we, as a collective community of learners, have benefited and will benefit from the work that took place. As educators we are continually looking for ways to improve the learning experience for the students and it is important that we keep our principles and mission in mind to assess efficacy and meaning. With a busy weekend and week ahead, I am keeping it brief (for me) and sharing two posts that I came across this past week that were both thought-provoking and centering at the same time, focusing on authentic and meaningful learning experiences...
5 Characteristics Of Project-Based Learning That Works
by Drew Perkins in TeachThought
Perkins outlines 5 principles for meaningful project-based learning and I believe they are worth seeing how they align with the work we ask of our students...
- Aligned Thinking and Learning - The project is intentionally designed to solicit thinking around desired standards, content, & skills students need to know.
- Rich Inquiry - The project provides multiple opportunities & need for high level questioning by students & teacher.
- Autonomy - The project provides opportunities for student voice & choice in the process & product.
- Meaningful Assessment - The project guides teaching & learning using purposeful formative and summative assessments.
- Craftsmanship - The project provides opportunities & reason for students to create craftsman-like products.
Quality project based learning empowers students by engaging them in processes of reflection and revision as they seek to improve their products to meet the needs of an authentic audience instead of just playing school.
The New Essential Questions...
by Chris Casal (@mr_casal)
Posted in response to a question posed at #ISTE2015 by Angela Maiers (@AngelaMaiers): Are we using technology to empower/enable our kids to make the world more awesome? #thinkingaloud. Here Casal reflects on how the 'chat' led to these two questions posted below. The reflective and open dialogue is admirable, and I believe we can replace the word 'technology' in the two questions with all of our 'tools/practices'...
The spirit and intent of our professional development is to help all of us explore our practices to better align our work with our mission and vision, and I hope we can carry forth the energy that was feeding Digital Learning Day. We have important work to do as a community and I continue to look forward to the work that lies ahead for all - students, teachers, and families.
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