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Nicole Mirra
Jul 12 2017

Resources in this collection

10 Resources in this collection
This resource highlights COLLABORATION between teachers from multiple cities, the National Park Service, and a historical society that resulted in a powerful curriculum helping students to understand the internment of Japanese-Americans during World War II. It demonstrates the transformative learning possibilities of working across educational sites.
This resource highlights COLLABORATION between a Detroit public high school teacher and a local media arts organization to help young people create multimodal texts about community issues that are meaningful to them. It demonstrates the ways that collaborative relationships between schools and community organizations can help students develop media literacy skills and explore their own interests.
This resource highlights one teacher's CURIOSITY as he participated in a massive open online course (MOOC) about connected learning and then sought to use technology in his own classroom to not only increase efficiency, but also transform his teaching. It demonstrates the power of inquiry to help you see your own practice from new perspectives and encourage you to take productive new risks.
This resource highlights a teacher educator's CURIOSITY as he structured an entire pre-service course around inquiry regarding what literacy, reading, and power look like in a changing social and political context. It demonstrates the kind of transformational thinking that emerges when you begin to question the very foundations of the disciplines you think you know so well and venture into new unknowns of possibility.
This resource highlights the COURAGE that one high school English teacher exhibited as she experimented with integrating Twitter into her classroom during Socratic Seminars. It demonstrates how risk-taking with new media tools can initially produce fear but eventually offers benefits by engaging students in new ways and spurring teacher creativity.
This resource highlights the COURAGE exhibited by an elementary school teacher as he experimented with organizing online book clubs with his students using Edmodo. It demonstrates the roadblocks that can emerge when using technology with young learners but also shows how setbacks can be seen as catalysts for future learning instead of failures.
This resource highlights game design as a strategy to foster CIVIC ENGAGEMENT in the classroom. It follows the journey of one teacher as she supported two of her students in designing and testing a video game about a controversial issue that they were interested in - the perils of the cocoa industry. It demonstrates an innovative strategy for helping students engage in civic action while also developing literacy skills.
This resource highlights the ways that educators can foster CIVIC ENGAGEMENT by facilitating classroom discussions about controversial social issues involving race, violence, and the criminal justice system. It offers a series of lesson templates focused on the murder of Jordan Davis that can be applied to other local or national civic issues. It demonstrates the level of planning and sensitivity needed to explore civic pain in the classroom and the benefits it can have for students' civic development and socio-emotional health.
This resource highlights how a high school biology and English teacher established a culture of CARE among their students by entrusting them with the responsibility to plan and implement a "bioethics day" that promoted humanization and empathy in science. It demonstrates the process and benefits involved in building a trusting and production-oriented classroom culture that honors student interests.
This resource highlights the importance of CARE as the foundation of the entire teaching profession. It shares the reflections of a group of black male educators about the love that brought them into teaching and keeps them there at a time when there is such a shortage of teachers of color. It demonstrates the importance of educator networks as sources of support and inspiration in forging shared purpose amidst challenge and heartache.

Transitioning from Conventional to Connected Teaching: Small Moves and Radical Acts









Take a look at the picture below of a classroom from 1950. Can you recognize classrooms today that look like this blast from the past?

Educators across the country - urban and rural, elementary and secondary - are recognizing that conventional forms of teaching and learning are not useful to prepare students for our dynamic and constantly shifting 21st century society. They are working to transform their practice and offer students learning opportunities that cross boundaries, position students as producers and active citizens, and use new media to foster open, collaborative networks.

They are finding support for their work in a new educational framework called connected learning. Connected learning advocates for experiences that bridge the multiple learning contexts of students' lives - home, peer, school, and community spaces - and builds on students' interests to support authentic, civically engaged projects. 

As teachers have put the theory of connected learning into practice and sought to offer students connected learning opportunities, they have realized that this model calls for a very different kind of teaching than the one many of us were socialized to take up when we entered the profession. Encouraging students to work with peers on projects that involve trial and error and reach beyond the classroom walls is messy - and we teachers are often conditioned to avoid messiness. 

I have been exploring the innovative work that teachers across the Educator Innovator network have been doing to teach for connected learning and noticed 5 key moves that they are making to transition from conventional to connected forms of teaching. This infographic lays out those moves:

I have curated a collection of resources that highlight each of the five major commitments of connected teaching: Collaboration, Curiosity, Courage, Civic Engagement, and Care. While all of these commitments blend in practice, I am teasing them out here in individual resources so that you can focus on commitments that you are particularly interested in cultivating yourself.

Use the comments section below to share your small moves toward connected teaching! 

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