There’s no question I am deeply passionate about meeting the needs of today’s learners through the creation of a ‘this century’ classroom. I really appreciate how @AmyHeavin shared on the Fractus Learning site (and Twitter) why educators need to be 21st Century Learners too. We hear colleagues talk about their PLN’s and how social media has changed their lives. We hear key buzz words used to demonstrate their understanding of change and transformation, and yet with all of that, what does the classroom really look like? Where is there proof that today’s learners are walking into classrooms they can’t wait to get to?
If I were to walk through your classroom would I see authentic collaboration between students? Would there be a boundless flow of student creativity being shared and honored? Would critical thinking and problem-solving be a natural part of the learning environment? Would I see proof of student responsibility and accountability for their own learning? What would the classroom environment look like? And, how would students be measured or assessed?
We all want our students to master the skills and objectives taught in the classroom. We masterfully craft all sorts of expectations to set them up for success. We challenge them to be experts with technology. We create places and spaces for collaboration and creativity to take place. And the list goes on and on. But if we really believe in all of this and want it to happen, then we must model for our students. If we won’t take risks then why should they? If we won’t practice what we ‘preach’ then why should they? If we have not bought into transforming classrooms then why should we expect student learning to be transformed?
Bottomline~if we are going to teach 21st century learners, then all of us need to make certain we know the commitment, knowledge and time involved in doing just that.