Mihály Csíkszentmihályi, Flow: The Optimal Experience
In the Flow…
Draw a time when you were highly engaged as a learner, and still
remember to this day. What did it look like? What did it sound like?
Learner Centeredness does not just take place in Kindergarten Classes;
It is a mindset as to how we approach teaching and learning for ALL LEARNERS
A few “personal” caveats about
It is not about lowering expectations for students
It is not about eliminating all learning tasks that
students dislike doing (e.g. exams)
It is not about less accountability for students
It is not about being accessible to students 24/7
It is not about avoiding risk/failure while learning
…..but it is about being responsive to the learners’
needs, involving them in course/classroom
decisions, using research-proven practices to design
powerful learning experiences, and making decisions that
are made in the bests interests of our students.
Symbols, Models and Frameworks
of learning and education
Compare and Contrast
Finish the sentence:
Colleges/Universities/Schools are like _______________________
Learning is like _______________________because ___________
A symbol of learning/education today is ____________________
How would our students complete this exercise?
Retrieved from “What did you
do in school today?”, Canadian
Education Association, 2009
Grade 9 -12 students
What happens here?
What happens here?
Our Students Have Changed
“’At risk’ students are those who leave school before or after
graduation with little possibility of continuing learning”
Together Everyone Achieves More Success
Curriculum in the
The Old Model
Curriculum in the 21st Century
The New Model
m Solving and
Social, Cultural, G
Turn and Talk for Two
What is role of my students? What is my role as an teacher?
Which instructional strategies will help my students
direct/control their own meanings and their own learning?
How will I assess this “constructed learning”
(tests, projects, service learning, presentations, final exams)
How else can I give control/ownership to students in my
courses? How can I empower them? How can I capture their
What are the challenges in giving up control?
How am I a “Learner-Centered” teacher?
How am I NOT a “Learner-Centered” teacher?
Are we teachers?
Determining the learning destination
Creating questions that foster inquiry
Designing units, backwards
Determining assessment evidence
Recognizing the benefits of performance criteria
or are we designers?
Architects of instruction?
Facilitators of learning?
Which song are you singing?
An Old and Familiar Tune
Or a A New Song
Is it time to change our tune? If so, why?
Learner-Centered education is
NOT a new concept
“True teachers are those who use themselves as bridges over which
they invite their students to cross; then, having facilitated their
crossing, joyfully collapse, encouraging them to create their own.”
21st Century Skills by Bernie Trilling & Charles Fader
Better Learning Through Structured Teaching by Douglas
Fisher & Nancy Frey
Beyond Monet by Barrie Bennett & Carol Rolheiser
Classroom Instruction That Works by Robert
Marzano, Debra Pickering, and Jane Pollock
Never Work Harder Than Your Students by Robyn Jackson
Sit and Get Won’t Grow Dendrites: Professional Learning
Strategies to Engage the Adult Brain by Marcia Tate
The Strategic Teacher by Harvey Silver, Richard Strong, &
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