Saturday, September 17, 2016

Learning to collaborate - one day at a time

Led by CVU, CSSU (soon to be CVSD!) is in the midst of clarifying the importance of a set of skills we are calling the "transferable standards" that have been identifying as vital skills for success in the 21st century.   Vermont is actually a nationwide leader in recognizing that schools need to emphasize not only content knowledge, but what students can do with any particular fact - Act 77 emphasizing performance based graduation standards, personalized learning plans and flexible pathways is the first legislation of it's kind in the US.    For SCS parents the most visible impact of this work will be our growing emphasis on the skills represented in this graphic.
 Now I'm sure most of you can't read the graphic so let's dig in a little bit - basically the skills fall into five different categories: Self-Direction, Creative and Practical Problem Solving, Informed and Integrative Thinking, Clear and Effective Communication and Responsible and Involved Citizenship.  Within these broad "leaves" there are three or four transferable standards that help clarify the meaning of what we hope successful students will be able to do in order to demonstrate that they are proficient in each area.   Here is a link to a document that simply lists these 19 - big enough for those of us without 20/10 vision to read:   CSSU / SCS Transferable Standards

To help us all better understand this work, we thought it would be helpful to frame our weekly picture summary around a particular transferable standard.  For this week we went looking for pictures of students engaged in work that encompasses Responsible and Involved Citizenship standard.

Screen Shot 2016-08-30 at 10.18.56 PM.png

So where did we find students learning to collaborate with each other - we certainly didn't have to look hard since it is such a fundamental focus of creating a positive classroom culture it seemed to be everywhere we looked.  A Friday morning walk-around in our C Wing found some rich examples of this learning in action.

It starts young - building a unifix "snake" together in Mrs. Kendrick's class
Cooperative games in Mrs. Burritt's music classroom
Learning to blend as a flute ensemble in Mr Buckingham's lessons 
All of our athletics programs also emphasize team and collaboration as well - here the Girls B soccer takes on Camels Hump
Even managed to capture a little video - not only is this 7th grade class with Mrs. Kelsh learning to collaborate as they play as an ensemble, clearly there is significant "creative risk-taking" going on as they perform and sing with peers on a very new skill.  You can just see the concentration as they work to figure out the complexity of coordinating rhythm, finger position and strumming - so fun to see learning in action!

Click here if you can't see "First Ukelele Ensemble of 7th graders"

Certainly a lot more to come - as we work through helping us all understand where these transferable standards fit in conjunction of our more traditional understanding of reading, writing and 'rithmetic.   Those are all still there as well - and we'll highlight them more over the coming weeks.  Hope your son or daughter wasn't too tired after their first full week of school - have to admit I was dragging a bit as I taught a Skills4Life class 8th period on Friday :-)   Glad for a weekend break!

No comments:

Post a Comment

Follow the SCS Blog