authenticity

post by Colin Angevine and Josh Weisgrau We started a STEAM program, and three years later, we’ve outgrown the acronym. It began when a group of upper school students approached a physics teacher about creating an advanced physics group tutorial. The physics teacher recruited a computer science teacher and the tutorial became robotics. The computer science teacher enlisted the support of a media...
When I first describe our #HavPassion research project to students, I get this quizzical look. "I can research anything? Really?" Really! For the last eight weeks, my tenth grade students have delved into the origins of the word passion, explored what it means to have grit and persevere through initial stumbles and failures, and ultimately share their passion with readers and audiences outside...
Bud Hunt suggests that teachers need time to explore, to wonder and question together. "Teaching is, and should be, a subversive activity." he says. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P2P33dNaxK8&list=PLJP9gms3pkLI8Frtq7YHPNgfjo-rC86qn  
Recently, a friend called me with concerns about her daughter's disinterest in the writing she was doing in school. Like many parents, she has fears about writing skills and what this might mean for her child's future. Most of our conversation was spent alleviating those concerns. We spoke about the various writing practices that youth engage with in our current culture and I assured her that the...
In the run up to the MacArthur Foundation's Digital Media and Learning Conference in San Francisco, making is on my mind. The ways that we make to learn, learn to make, and the composing processes involved in it all. One of the strands of the conference is being organized by Mitch Resnick around ideas of Making, Tinkering and Remixing and the connections to 21st century learning. In this light...
Educators offer instruction, support, guidance, opportunities, challenges, resources, but how do teaching and learning really occur in out-of-school media literacy education programs? This resource takes a deeper look at some key characteristics of pedagogy in two youth media programs in the Philadelphia area. As part of my Stoneleigh Junior Fellowship with Research for Action in 2010-2011, I...
Reflecting about the implementation of our Maker pilot here in the Central Coast region of California, I often go exploring among my roots in childhood experiences of progressive education (meaning student-centered, ungraded, project-based authentic learning), years as a home-school teacher and one-room rural school substitute teacher, and the whole language/whole child convictions I developed in...
"Who does that?" a girl in my 10th grade English class murmured dismissively. We were walking back to class from the garden across the street from our school, the East-West School of International Studies, Queens, NY. She was responding to my vague proposal that we take their essays about different plots in a local community garden and make audio recordings. "We could put your recordings together...
When Thomas Friedman, New York Times columnist and expert on world affairs, commented that students today need to be great collaborators in order to succeed in the global economy (2007), he did not mention the wiki. As a middle school teacher, I share Friedman's belief. And the wiki, an online writing and publishing program, has been my tool of choice in teaching my students to work with others...
by Dawn Reed I believe in the power of voice. As an English Language Arts teacher, I value voice in writing, speaking, and as a means to critical thinking or engaging in ideas. I want my students to know they have something to contribute and can insert their “oar” in life’s many conversations. When preparing to teach a speech class, I knew that I wanted students to experience an audience that...

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