“This is a profound shift to view the child as a capable, competent, rich in potential rights-bearing individual rather than as an empty vessel waiting to be filled.”
How do we shift our image of the learner?
Recently I had the privilege to listen to Hailey Noseworthy, a Grade 12 student from Valmont Academy, speak about her experiences with Deep Learning at her school.
Hailey began by sharing how her involvement in the SHAD program helped shift her own thinking about school and learning. She discovered amazing world changes people were making all around Canada, yet nobody was talking about this at her own school. She realized that SHAD’s experiential approach to learning should be available to students in every school.
Living in rural Newfoundland doesn’t mean you can’t have the same opportunities as someone in downtown Toronto!
Children should not be focused on how to manipulate a school system to get an A!
School should focus on building up the strengths of every student. Today’s world needs independent, creative, critical thinkers who are connected and engaged in their learning and their work.
“It is educational malpractice to teach students that their learning is not as important as a report card grade.”
When we can customize health care, cars and social media pages, why do we think learning has to be standardized for everyone?
“Bubbling in a multiple choice exam in a gym in rows of desks shouldn’t determine our success any more!”
When we focus instead on relevant learning that will be meaningful when students leave the four walls of the classroom – that’s where you will find your change makers!
Focusing on deep learning allows students to see their own strengths, to believe everyone is a genius in their own way – and it lets teachers see this too.
“When we give students the chance to build on their strengths, we give students the chance to show us their strengths.”
“Helping children believe in themselves, helps us believe in them too.”
Dr. Jean Clinton has reiterated this in her own learning.
“It goes something like this; when students fully engage with the 6C’s of Character, Citizenship, Collaboration, Communication, Creativity and Critical Thinking, those students who come from disadvantage have a more profound and deeper opportunity to engage in the learning through collaborative inquiry. They are able to bring their experience and life knowledge, rather than simply being labelled as not having what we “need them to know.”
This implies an inherent belief in the competency and capabilities of every child; that every child CAN learn and will do well if they are provided the opportunity and the right environment. As one group says, “It’s skill, not will they need to do well.”
Deep Learning Series:
- Relevance Unfound (Based on Chapter 1 of Deep Learning: Engage the World, Change the World by Fullan, Quinn and McEachen)
- Finding Purpose, Skill and Connection (Based on Chapter 1 of Deep Learning: Engage the World, Change the World by Fullan, Quinn and McEachen)
- Sharing Deep Learning – Newfoundland and Labrador English School District Principals share their learning after a #NPDL conference in New Brunswick.
- A Profound Shift: Seeing Children as Capable and Competent. Grade 12 Valmont Academy student Hailey Noseworthy shares her Deep Learning Experiences with Program Staff at the Newfoundland and Labrador English School District.