What Did You Learn At School Today? (From Your Students)

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I spend a great deal of time thinking about the shift that we need to see in our schools in order to best prepare our students for their future.  Lately I’ve been thinking about the question that many parents ask their children when they get off of the school bus or when they sit down for dinner:

“What did you learn at school today?”

In order to see the shift move away from the traditional teacher-centered classrooms that fail to engage learners, everyone who enters the school doors needs to ask themselves this question each day.  In fact, we need to ensure that we are setting up learning environments where educators provide opportunities for their students to lead the learning.

As stated by Douglas Thomas and John Seely Brown in A New Culture of Learning:

“Teachers no longer need to scramble to provide the latest up-to-date information to students because the students themselves are taking an active role in helping to create and mold it…”

One example I saw last week was an article written by BHS Senior Nick Desimone for the district’s Ed Tech Blog on the new Apple iOS.    While Nick’s article is a great insight into the new Apple iOS it is, more importantly, one of countless examples of how students can become our instructors in areas in which they are interested. Things are changing so rapidly in many areas that there is no way we could ever expect students to wait for teachers to learn. Instead, we need to rely more on the ability of our students to teach us and give up control over the dissemination of knowledge.

Thanks Nick! What will you and your classmates teach me tomorrow? I can’t wait to find out…

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4 Comments

  1. Love this. It reminds me of the question the Canadian Education Association asked for our initiative: What did you do in school today? You may want to check out our website – listening to students is at the heart of it all – http://www.cea-ace.ca/programs-initiatives/wdydist

    There’s also a video that provides an introduction to the initiative here:

    And….we’re going to be posting a video that explores how one school in Nova Scotia saw significant improvements in student AND teacher learning by listening to students and working collaboratively on how they they learn best. That video is ‘coming soon’!

    October 24, 2011
  2. susan price (@twinsbless) said:

    I reiterate, “And a little child shall lead them….. ”

    Kids are amazing teachers!!!

    October 24, 2011
    • sarah said:

      i think that we should learn because if we learn then we no what to do when we grow up and if we learn then we get smart.So thats why i think we should learn at school.

      July 23, 2012

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