As Dean Shareski and I worked together on our new book, Different Schools for a Different World, (released this week!), he encouraged me to update my list of building blocks for the future of schools. Here’s the new list (now 10 items instead of 8):
- Project- and inquiry-based learning environments that emphasize greater student agency and active application of more cognitively-complex thinking, communication, and collaboration skills.
- Community projects, internships, digital simulations, and other problem- and project-based learning experiences that foster students’ ability to engage in authentic, real-world work.
- Competency-based education and standards-based grading efforts that shift the focus of assessment from seat time to learning mastery.
- 1:1 computing initiatives (and concurrent Internet bandwidth upgrades) that give students powerful digital learning devices and access to the world’s information, individuals, and organizations.
- The expansion of digital and online (and often open access) information resources that increase the availability of higher and deeper learning opportunities.
- Online communities of interest that supplement and augment more-traditional learning communities that are limited by geography and time.
- Adaptive software and data systems (and accompanying organizational models) that can facilitate greater individualization of learning content and pace.
- Alternative credentialing mechanisms that enable individuals to quickly reskill for and adapt to rapidly-evolving workforce needs and economic demands.
- Flexible scheduling that moves students away from 50-minute time chunks – and a prescribed number of hours and days in a prescribed location – and toward opportunities for students to learn longer, deeper, and in more places about important life skills and concepts.
- Redesigned learning spaces that accommodate flexible, student-centered grouping and learning tasks rather than classrooms that are dictated by instructor or janitorial needs.
What would you add or change?