Districts across the US are being challenged to change the way teaching and learning occurs in their districts. Thought leaders of the highest academia in our country were recently posed the following: What should learning in the 21st century look like?”
As we collaborate with some of the largest, most progressive and most challenged districts across the country, many requirements of what this teaching and learning should look like emerge. These requirements have a recurring them of “transparency” of information and data across all divisions of a district. Transparency across student data, effective teaching, meaningful assessment, academic rigor of instructional plans and materials, and the administrative functions of the classroom. Again, in examining work recently completed and published by the US DOE in the National Educational Technology Plan, this theme is echoed. This has been coined “the grand challenge”. “…the ultimate grand challenge problem in education: establishing an integrated, end-to-end real-time system for managing learning outcomes and costs across our entire education system at all levels.”
Those requirements represent the core elements of an integrated learning system. Curriculum and Content Management Learning Management Alternative Instructional Content Delivery Assessment Professional Development & Talent Management Student Information, Scheduling & Gradebooks Existing initiatives across the divisions today address improvement in some of these key areas. However, today, most of this work is done in silos that don’t integrate with one another. They don’t provide “transparency”.
Key to success in this type of an implementation is a pure partnership, from the very beginning When districts allow our educational leads to gather district requirements from within the individual districts, we can feel confident the recommended solution will best meet the needs of that district. Allowing Houghton Mifflin Harcourt to partner with your district in a requirements gathering stage can ensure all needs of all divisions are considered in the proposed solution.
I don’t think our illustration is much of an exaggeration of how many of our teachers feel upon entering the classroom door each day. In order to portray the power transparency of information and data can provide upon teaching and learning, we would like to tell that story through the day in the life of a teacher, taking a peak into what this future state of teaching and learning could be like.
Welcome to Mr. Goodrich’s Middle School Classroom. It is 2014 and we open the door to a teacher working with students across three grade levels that have a variety of learning needs. The range of abilities in Mr. Goodrich’s classroom would be overwhelming to any teacher. Students are working on, below and above grade level and many come to him as English Language Learners. Today, Mr. Goodrich is beginning his day with a parent conference to discuss the recent decline in a student’s performance. MG wanted to meet with the parents Brett Aceves to discuss his concerns.
Prior to the conference, MG logs into Radiant to gather all the information in one centralized location to prepare for the parent conference.
From here, MG accesses all student diagnostics, including recent activity records,
and the individual digital portfolio. From one single location, he has a complete picture of Brett’s body of work.
In addition to recent performance, MG also reviews Brett’s student’s longitudinal test score data, including all state, local, and classroom assessment data. MG is looking for patterns of performance. MG knows there should be no surprises for Brett’s parents, as they have access to this same information through their parent portal access to this online system.
Longitudinal data is now key in MG planning. Prior to the start of every year, MG looks through his classes longitudinal data in order to determine the best instructional plan for each class and every student.
But, even if MG does not catch every need for every student, the online system will also recommend learning paths for my students based on patterns or performance.
Since all MG students also have access to Radiant, many of them use this space not only to complete their own classroom assignments, but to create collaborative projects, share ideas, and problem solve with one another, aspects of social learning not previously avalailable.
By combing performance data and these social learning tools, MG can group his students based on ability and many times, will pair stronger students with struggling students in order to create the most effective collaborative learning environment.
One of MG’s favorite parts of the online system is that all of the curriculum resources are accessible from this one central location. This means that MG is able to access and create standards based lesson plans, and ensure he selects district recommended resources most appropriate to the students’ strengths and weaknesses.
Lesson planning is not what it used to be. MG loves to explore the plethora of digital learning assets that are available to him to use in class. Videos, learning animations, interactive field trips, all of these assets are within the one on line system and they truly keep his students engaged.
Most of his students today even access their core programs digitally and forgo having a “tote book”. MG does not miss the “I left my book at home” excuse
Over the last couple of years, the administrators’ view into student performance, also accessed thru the online system, has told a very positive story. They can look at performance from a district level, with a view into each school,
all the way down to individual student performance
The analytics in the system allow them to track student performance, even by teacher, to make what are sometimes tough but important personnel decisions. This kind of data is also very useful when determining what kind of PD to focus on year over year for each teacher
Since the teachers can now complete PD online, the costs for PD has decreased
so your district can deliver higher quality sessions vs. putting money into additional facilities for PD and paying for physical PD facilitators.
At the close of each day, MG feels very good about teaching. He feels empowered with the right information and the right resources to meet the needs of his students and that he is a part of a team. Student information is transparent from administrator to teacher to parent. It’s a great team to be on.
Continuing to support functionality in silos will not bring you the level of transparency needed to achieve a 21 st Century model for teaching and learning. We understand that you may have existing systems supporting some of functionality the Radiant solution provides. In that case, we would like to examine in collaboration with your teams whether our not your benefits are in migrating that functionality over to modules of Radiant or is the greatest benefit in integrating some of your existing systems in. Again, this is the level of collaboration that is found in pure partnerships.
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt is honored to embark on this journey with you. The need to become more innovative in all components of the teaching and learning process is a nationally shared goal, echoed all the way up by our great nation’s leaders. The philosophy behind recent federal education initiatives very much reflects the need for transparency of student data, improvement in teacher effectiveness and the accessibility of 24/7 instructional resources to all stakeholders. This is the time innovate and inspire our teachers, students, parents and adminsitrators.
Day in the Life
A Twenty-First Century Look For Teaching &Learning RADIANT
student data meaningful assessment academic rigor of instructional plans & materials effective teaching administrative functions that take place in the classroom TRANSPARENCY RADIANT US DOE GRAND CHALLENGE: “ ESTABLISHING AND END TO END REAL TIME SYSTEM FOR MANAGING LEARNING OUTCOMES AND COSTS ACROSS OUR ENTIRE EDUCATION SYSTEM AT ALL LEVELS”
curriculum management analytics learning management assessment gradebook professional development student information system RADIANT