Part of my current role in Ontario is working with teachers and education leaders to dig into what modern learning really looks like at the level of the “student desk”.
Much of the work in this province is informed by the thinking of Michael Fullan, particularly in his latest publications “Great to Excellent: Launching the Next Stage of Ontario’s Education Agenda“, and “A Rich Seam: How New Pedagogies Find Deep Learning“.
Fullan’s “Six C’s” (for 21st Century skills) are frequently at the centre of such conversations.
Fullan, of course, isn’t the first person to consider the skills needed for today’s world. Doug Belshaw has spent many years studying and crowd-sourcing his ideas around what digital literacies look like.
Certainly the two groups of “C’s” represent slightly different purposes, but the overlap is obvious, and both inform our thinking about what learning needs to look like in today’s world.
My experience tells me that “Confidence” is a critical aspect of our work as we consider how learning needs to change. A lack of confidence can be a prohibitive barrier to success in today’s digital spaces.
Many educators express fear in making their thinking visible through blogging or ePortfolios because others will be critical, or perhaps even reprimand them for thinking differently. Students, unfortunately, sometimes need to overcome the fear of past experiences to progress in particular subject areas.
Teachers need to feel confident in using new tools to engage learners and redefine what learning looks like in the classroom.
How are we creating the conditions in our classrooms, schools and systems so that all of our learners can develop the confidence they need to participate in, model and facilitate deep learning for everyone?