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Deeper Learning Digest: A Million and One Ways to Learn

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April 17, 2015 10:05 am


The ‘Deeper Learning Digest’ is a bi-weekly roundup of articles, blog posts, and other content around deeper learning. Make sure to add High School Soup to your RSS feed to stay up-to-date on all deeper learning news. Please be sure to follow @deeperlearning on Twitter for more on deeper learning.

Amid the growing push to reinvent the nation’s public high schools, initiatives that connect students more directly to their individual interests, and tap into their innate motivations, are gaining in popularity. New Hampshire is one of a handful of states at the forefront of efforts to promote flexibility in how students learn and how that knowledge is measured.

What do schools need to transform? According to Carmen Coleman, director of Next Generation Leadership at the Center for Innovation at the University Of Kentucky College Of Education, in order to reimagine learning, schools must – among other things – reimagine the role of leaders.  

In an April 7 webinar, the Alliance held an in-depth discussion on how curriculum tools can help teachers implement college- and career-ready standards and raise levels of learning for students, particularly those who are low-performing. Robert Rothman, senior fellow at the Alliance for Excellent Education, was joined by educators and researchers to discuss the Literacy Design Collaborative (LDC). LDC tools have been implemented in sixty-five districts, has effective in improving learning and instruction.

The Teaching Channel explores deeper learning for English Language Learners (ELL) in series of videos. Considering everything from peer-to-peer tutoring and supporting ELL students through project based learning, the videos include commentary from educators and students on ways to improve the deeper learning experience for this particular subgroup.

MindShift’s Katrina Schwartz looked into progressive ways to measure deeper learning in recent article. Schwartz cites the learning practices of Envision Schools in California, outlining the basics of delving deeper into understand and assessing student achievement under this growing learning model. Setting clear learning goals and supplying constructive feedback are two of the practices Schwartz considers.

“Instead of “sneaking learning” inside of educational games and activities, what if instead we had conversations with our kids about what piqued their curiosity?” Carri Schneider, director of Research and Policy for Getting Smart, suggests we stop ‘tricking’ our kids into learning, allowing them to pave their own path and explore their own interests. Schneider lists 10 recommendations for inspiring lifelong learning, including “Get out and explore,” “Seek answers together,” and understanding that “Everything is an opportunity to learn.”

Kristen Vogt, knowledge management officer, and Andy Calkins, deputy director of Next Generation Learning Challenges give insight to making personalized learning work educators and students. Considering the tools and strategies they’ve learned from, Vogt and Calkins suggest those interested in personalized learning develop frameworks that: customizes a personalized learning approach for the school, defines success for students, and promotes comprehensiveness.

Jennifer Poon, director of the Innovation Lab Network at the Council of Chief State School Officer, draws on her experience as a volleyball to make the argument for improving K-12 state accountability systems. Poon says states need to create the kind of multiple measure systems that “incentivize internal accountability.”


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