October 17, 2018—Three teachers received international recognition for their participation in an international partnership known as New Pedagogies for Deep Learning (NPDL).
Congratulations to Anne Marie Christie-Sharpe and Terri-Lynn Kirkey, Stirling Public School; and Amber Clarke, Centre Hastings Secondary School, for their exemplary efforts in demonstrating sustainable teaching practices that engage students in order to be prepared for the possibilities of today and tomorrow.
NPDL involves school boards from seven countries: Australia, Canada, Finland, Netherlands, United States, Uruguay, New Zealand. It engages educators in shifting their practice and beliefs about student abilities and achievement, as well as encourages educators to take risks, collaborate with others and seek out learning partnerships locally and globally. The efforts focus on six competencies known as the 6Cs: collaboration, creativity, critical thinking, citizenship, character, communication.
Project 1: Simple Machines: Changing Lives
Teachers: Anne Marie Christie-Sharpe and Terri-Lynn Kirkey
Students: Two Grade 2 classes at Stirling Public School
Skills focus: Collaboration and critical thinking
Working together, Christie-Sharpe and Kirkey led students through a project to deepen students’ learning in critical thinking and collaboration.
As they investigated the impact that simple machines have on our daily lives, students began to see connections between mobility and accessibility. For example, they realized that an elevator, in simple terms, is a pulley that helps people get upstairs. An inclined plane (ramp) allows access to buildings for anyone in strollers or wheelchairs. Wheelchairs are possible because of the wheels and axles.
These realizations caused students to have questions about the challenges that people with disabilities may face every day. Coincidentally, this happened around the time of the 2018 Paralympic Olympic Games. Through watching the events, students learned about and made connections to mobility equipment used in sports.
The result? Students engaged in classroom and experiential learning activities to develop collaboration and critical-thinking skills.
Watch this video to see students express their learning
Project 2: The 20Time Project
Teacher: Amber Clarke
Students: Two Grade 9 classes at North Hastings High School and Quinte Secondary School
Skills focus: Character, collaboration and communication
The 20Time Project involved students having time in English class to work on a project of their choice for 20% of the time. Their teachers created classroom conditions where students could follow their passion and design their learning. Students presented a proposal, asked questions along the way, challenged each other about what they saw and heard; told stories about their experiences and grew together as learners and leaders.
Some of the projects involved spreading happiness by creating origami flowers with positive messages; and creating a card club where students taught their peers to play cards resulting in increased social interaction and less time spent on mobile devices.
The result? Students worked on projects of interest to them. They created blog posts, videos and presentations to demonstrate their learning in the areas of character, collaboration and communication.
Watch this video to hear Amber Clarke’s thoughts about this teaching/learning experience
STUDENT TESTIMONIALS ABOUT THE 20TIME PROJECT
- “It gave me a reason to come to class, to work hard.”
- “Doing my project made learning fun and widened my concept of how and what the world can be through my positive social media account.”
- “We were excited to go to English class and were happy to be there. We made fishing lures from household products like pop can tabs and broom handles.”
- “I created a blog about diabetes, did research, created recipes and still wanted to do more. I decided to go on a sugar-free diet for the month of November. It was truly an authentic learning experience.”
According to the NPDL website , “We work alongside educators to change the role of teachers to that of activators of learning who design learning experiences that build on learner strengths and needs, create new knowledge using real-life problem solving and help all students identify their talents, purpose and passion.”
Participating school boards from around the world submit work for global moderation. The means our local achievements/projects are measured against others in the world, in recognition of best practices around the world.