Great Journeys Academics


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  • How to find, evaluate, and apply information in new contexts How to work together How to communicate
  • The false separation between disciplines that traditional academics uses does not reflect the real world. Problems in the real world don’t occur in “English”; they’re just problems, and are multifaceted
  • Let’s use the resources of our place to help students make meaningful connections and thus develop the skills they need
  • This is the aspiration, written from our mission, that applies to academics
  • Let’s take these one at a time: College Prep Integrated Experiential Differentiated
  • Here’s how we sum up the connection between skills, content, and teaching, learning, and assessment
  • This is the content
  • This the skill building
  • This is the assessment part
  • We want to design lessons and assessments so that the process of learning, the content learned, and the product students create are authentic and rigorous: rigor, relevance, relationships
  • Great Journeys Academics

    1. 1. Great Journeys Academics The Future
    2. 2. A new curriculum <ul><li>Is coming for school year 2010-2011 </li></ul><ul><li>New classes, a new structure </li></ul>
    3. 3. Why change at all? #1 <ul><li>The world is changing . . . really fast </li></ul><ul><li>It’s not enough to know information; students need skills to know what to do with information </li></ul><ul><li>Students need different skills </li></ul>
    4. 4. Shift happens
    5. 5. Why change at all? #2 <ul><li>We all learn best by making meaningful connections </li></ul><ul><li>It’s how our brains work . . . it’s common sense </li></ul><ul><li>Let’s structure our curriculum to provide this </li></ul>
    6. 6. Why change at all? #3 <ul><li>Let’s make use of our amazing place </li></ul><ul><li>Rappahannock River and Bay watershed . . . </li></ul><ul><li>History, cities, mountains, rivers, ocean . . . </li></ul>
    7. 7. <ul><li>Let’s use the resources of our place to help students make meaningful connections and thus develop the skills they need </li></ul>
    8. 8. Aspiration <ul><li>To engage in lifelong learning and the critical use of information. To this end, we are committed to a college preparatory curriculum that is integrated, experiential , and differentiated , designed to enable students with diverse learning styles to be active learners who make meaning out of the world around them. </li></ul>
    9. 9. In other words . . . <ul><li>To be college preparatory, we must make students ready for college and for a world that is really, and continuously, changing </li></ul>
    10. 10. In other words . . . <ul><li>For optimal learning, classes should be integrated , just as issues are in the world, connecting to each other through structure, schedule, and themes </li></ul>
    11. 11. In other words . . . <ul><li>For optimal learning, students should do things with knowledge, they should experience it, not just memorize </li></ul>
    12. 12. In other words . . . <ul><li>We should adjust how we teach to how students learn ( differentiation ) </li></ul><ul><li>This type of curriculum is better for all types of students </li></ul>
    13. 13. Let’s take these one at a time: <ul><li>College Prep </li></ul><ul><li>Integrated </li></ul><ul><li>Experiential </li></ul><ul><li>Differentiated </li></ul>
    14. 14. 1. College prep:
    15. 15. To provide this, the curriculum has three foci: <ul><li>Skills </li></ul><ul><li>Meaningful content </li></ul><ul><li>Authentic teaching, learning, and assessment </li></ul>
    16. 16. Here’s how we sum it up: <ul><li>Rigor </li></ul><ul><li>Relevance </li></ul><ul><li>Relationships </li></ul>
    17. 17. Rigor, Relevance, Relationships <ul><li>Rigor: students should be challenged by an in-depth process of engagement with content </li></ul><ul><li>Students should do real, challenging stuff with information </li></ul>
    18. 18. Rigor, Relevance, Relationships <ul><li>Relevance: that engagement needs to be meaningful, building skills and experiences relevant to students and to the world </li></ul>
    19. 19. Rigor, Relevance, Relationships <ul><li>Relationships: the products students create in learning should reveal the relationships and connections that cross disciplines, communities, and the world </li></ul>
    20. 20. What skills? <ul><li>Learning and innovation skills </li></ul><ul><li>Information, media, and technology skills </li></ul><ul><li>Personal, community, and productivity skills </li></ul><ul><li>Specific academic skills per discipline </li></ul>
    21. 21. Learning and innovation skills <ul><li>Curiosity , Creativity and Innovation </li></ul><ul><li>Critical Thinking and Problem Solving </li></ul><ul><li>Communication and Collaboration </li></ul>
    22. 22. IMT Skills <ul><li>Information Literacy </li></ul><ul><li>Media Literacy </li></ul><ul><li>Technology Literacy </li></ul>
    23. 23. Personal, community, and productivity skills <ul><li>Reflection and Informed Judgment </li></ul><ul><li>Environmental Literacy </li></ul><ul><li>Emotional Intelligence Skills </li></ul><ul><li>Global and Multicultural Skills and Awareness </li></ul><ul><li>Leadership & Civic Responsibility </li></ul><ul><li>Adaptability and Resiliency </li></ul><ul><li>Initiative & Self-Direction </li></ul><ul><li>Productivity & Accountability </li></ul><ul><li>Social Skills </li></ul>
    24. 24. What content? <ul><li>Content relevant both to disciplines and to students, applied to build skills and approached across disciplines </li></ul>
    25. 25. Teaching, learning, assessment <ul><li>Process: Students engage in meaningful work with knowledge, not just reproduce it </li></ul><ul><li>  </li></ul><ul><li>Content: Students gain in-depth understanding and communication of content across disciplines </li></ul><ul><li>Product: Students apply that understanding to problems of value beyond the classroom </li></ul>
    26. 26. To sum up: <ul><li>Connections make meaning: our students find meaning in knowledge through in-depth engagement that has value across disciplines and beyond school. </li></ul>
    27. 27. 2. Integrated and 3. Experiential
    28. 28. Integrated <ul><li>Integrated by grade levels: curriculum, classes, teams of faculty </li></ul><ul><li>Encompass both regular and honors classes </li></ul><ul><li>The classes at each grade level will connect to each other. What students study in history will connect with English, or math with science </li></ul>
    29. 29. The River Provides . . . <ul><li>Physical resource for experiential opportunities </li></ul><ul><li>Thematic metaphor for the the curriculum, and the journey, which makes connections easier: </li></ul><ul><li>The River Journey: Places, Selves, Citizens </li></ul>
    30. 30. Themes by Grade Level <ul><li>9: Journey at the River: Our Place, Our Selves (local and regional) </li></ul>
    31. 31. <ul><li>10: Bay Journeys: Many Places, Many Selves, Many Communities (places, selves, communities around the world and throughout history) </li></ul>
    32. 32. <ul><li>11: Ocean to Ocean: Ourselves, Our Nation (national) </li></ul>
    33. 33. <ul><li>12: Rivers Flow Past Many Shores: Ourselves, Our World (global) </li></ul>
    34. 34. Experiential <ul><li>Watershed expeditions at each grade level </li></ul><ul><li>Experiences outside the classroom where the connections happen by doing </li></ul>
    35. 35. Integrated and Experiential <ul><li>Independent Projects in 10 and 12 </li></ul><ul><li>Students pursue their passions . . . Create a product that applies what they learn </li></ul><ul><li>Potential for an Honors diploma for students who pursue a high level challenge </li></ul>
    36. 36. 4. Differentiated <ul><li>We are committed to the differentiation of instruction and assessment to meet the learning needs not only of students with different learning styles but also of students with learning differences. </li></ul>
    37. 37. In addition to traditional instruction: <ul><li>Multi-modal teaching </li></ul><ul><li>Place-based education </li></ul><ul><li>Project-based learning </li></ul><ul><li>Inquiry and problem-based education </li></ul><ul><li>Strengths and learning styles assessments </li></ul>
    38. 38. Some Examples So Far: <ul><li>Mr. Pyles' ‘Our Place in History’ </li></ul><ul><li>Dr. Goodwin's problem and inquiry-based projects </li></ul><ul><li>Mrs. Adkins's chem labs (with peanut butter and marshmellows!) </li></ul><ul><li>Mrs. Wallin: let’s not just learn the formula, let's learn how to derive the formula, or the exponential function . . . </li></ul>
    39. 39. Some Examples So Far: <ul><li>Dr. Carrillo: let’s use the data from our river in real world problems; collaborative technology in the classroom, like blogs, nings </li></ul>
    40. 40. What is the goal of the academic journey? <ul><li>Connections make meaning: our students find meaning in knowledge through in-depth engagement that has value across disciplines and beyond school. </li></ul>