After reading Will Richard’s blog post on opting out of state tests and two news articles (New York Times and The Bangor News) about opting out..it got me thinking…..do I want my son to take these tests when he goes to school? He’s only 4 months old(so we have a ways to go), but for the first time I looked at education from a parent’s point of view instead of an educators. It was a big ah-ha moment for me.
The initial question of him taking the testes lead me to another thought….there is so much potential change going on right now that who knows what education will look like in 5 years when he’s ready to enter kindergarten, or fifteen years when he’s getting ready for high school…
I started thinking about what I would want school to look like for my son. I’m sure this will evolve over time, but here is what I’ve come up with so far…
- students are free to follow their passion
- students choose their major topics of study for the year
- hybrid learning is available
- students aren’t in a traditional classroom 8 hours a day
- students decide how to show what they learned
- some type of 1:1 program whether school provided or BYOD
- students create and collaborate through project-based learning
As a teacher I tried to integrate some of these practices. I know it takes time and it can be very overwhelming with all of the different changes coming at us at once. One thing that I learned and that I stress when I’m talking to teachers who want to make a change, is don’t try to do it all at once. Make little changes and build upon them. Maybe start with something you’re already doing and think about how you can change one aspect of a project or lesson.
So my question to you is: What do you want our schools to look like in the next 5 or 10 years? What little changes can you make or have you made to work towards your vision?