Target 3 – Flexible Learning Environments. FWSU will maximize flexible learning environments by redefining the school day, promoting learning experiences that extend beyond the school classroom, and fostering creativity, innovation, and differentiated learning opportunities for all.
Action Step – Provide students w/ access to content, resources, and methods for learning beyond the school day and beyond the school walls.
Indicator of Success – Students are engaged in answering authentic questions and solving problems in collaborative settings.
BFA ‘s Social Studies teacher, Benjamin Psaros, invited his 8th grade students to demonstrate their learning about the French and Indian War using any of the tools available to them. Students had access to their iPads and other digital tools to share their ideas.
Ben described his excitement when one student approached him with a creative idea: “Cathryn came to me and asked if she could do one of those, ‘videos, where the video is sped up and you draw, then do a voiceover.’ I knew exactly what she wanted to do, and interestingly thought of Sir Kenneth Robinson’s Changing Education Paradigms video. It was a perfect fit for our FWSU Target 3: Flexible Learning. We talked, and I got her started thinking about how she would approach her project and she was off!”
The video below is Cathryn Senesac’s interpretation of the French and Indian War captured in time-lapse video. Her project was modeled after short instructional videos that interested her, and she took on the challenge of producing her own as a way of showing her understanding. Cathryn collaborated with BFA Technology Integration Specialist on the technical aspects of her project. She then worked diligently for three weeks, in and out of her Social Studies block, to complete her project. She was proud to present her video clip to classmates and post it on the web for a broader audience. She has given us permission to share it here!
Another student, Connor Rogers, also completed an innovative video for his project. He took extra time and created a Brain Buster for the French and Indian War – again showing his understanding of the sequence, causes and pivotal events of the war. He created and completed the video at home using a green screen and editing software on his personal device.
Today’s schools provide students with opportunities to express their learning in a variety of ways, to share it with a broader audience than ever before, and to flex their creative muscles as a way of communicating their learning.