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John Merrow talks deeper learning, the “Holy Grail” of education

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December 14, 2012 09:19 pm


If there were a “holy grail” of education, what would it be?

In his weekly blog Take Note, John Merrow defines it as the big three: project-based learning, technology, and enthusiastic teachers. But not all three elements need to be present simultaneously for magic to be found. If need be, Merrow notes, the trifecta could be wrapped up into a single one of the components: technology.

Through technology, students can interact and communicate with enthusiastic teachers, without them needing to be present. Project-based learning is made even more accessible and content rich by allowing students to work alongside their peers around the world. All the essential components of the Holy Grail of Education can be achieved through technology devices and implementation in the classroom.

Merrow believes strongly that this trifecta is the key to providing a 21st-century, deeper learning centered education for all of our students. His fear is that policymakers, district leaders and other stakeholders will make it imperative for the three components – projects, teachers, and technology – to be contained and limited to the classroom.

“When the goal is deeper learning, having those three elements is pretty close to being essential,” Merrow writes. But they don’t need to be and should not be limiting factors – they should expand the classroom beyond its walls.

Merrow asks readers and educators to share their suggestions on how to incorporate these elements into classroom learning to make deeper learning a reality. Share with him on his website at

You can read John Merrow’s entire post, “Deeper Learning,” here.


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