If you want to be innovative, you have to disrupt your routine. It was time to do things differently. George Couros
This week I worked with other teachers designing a curriculum unit. Starting with the Year 8 English, Australian Curriculum document and the Pearson’s unit- The creative world: Animation we considered what the learning outcomes and assessment should look like and how to sequence the content. What was our learning progression?
This planning session was an opportunity for me to share ideas about being mobile with learning and the 21 Century Fluencies 6 Ds.
As you can see in this photo above the Discovery section of the Fluency’s 6 Ds was far too long. (The unit planner suggests 1-2 hours but I had 3 weeks). Why did I have such a long focus on the discovery stage? Were the Pearson Units defining knowledge and the learning environment?
I neded help! Something was wrong! So I asked a teacher, Danielle Kemp, who is also leading change using the Fluencies and she reminded me of an activity we experienced in Lee Crockett’s presentation. Lee had given us a challenge to build a tower and the materials but had not told use how to use them. Yes, a lightbulb moment! We give students the text book but do they need to do the comprehension questions to achieve the challenge? As Lee points out, we need to move beyond the culture of dependency on the teacher and the textbook.
Learning and knowledge should not to be assessed through a students’ ability to successfully answer Pearson comprehension questions. Is a text book how we measure and pace learning?
So what is Discovery? I needed a video to explain this further so I went to the 21 Century Fluency Project website and watched the solution fluency video
Discovery is about gaining context to the problem and shifting our thinking to analysis and evaluation prepping our minds to dream a solution.
This is now what my learning progression for this unit or challenge looks like:
Using the Fluencies we realise that kids (and teachers) today learn from Youtube, Twitter and blogs anywhere at anytime they don’t have to be told.This ability to learn at any time, any place and at any pace is the reality of our world.
It is my responsibility to take control of my own learning and to also teach students to take responsibility for their own learning by consciously using the Fluencies and the 6 Ds.
This learning unit needed to change from delivering information through a text book (even though it is on-line) and comprehension questions (even though they are answered on Canvas) to an application of higher order thinking and independent cognitive skills in the context of real-world, real-life and real-time tasks… we need to rethink our assumptions about instructional design, what constitutes learning and even what it means to be intelligent. Lee Crockett
The Fluencies are about problem solving and by progressing through the 6 Ds, we can personalise learning and students can become creative consumers of information.
As George Couros points out:
“People never learn anything by being told, they have to find out for themselves.” — Paulo Coelho