Striving To Reach Every Talented Child - Heidi Williams

"Why set limits to what our children can do?"

Moving from a traditional teaching pedagogy to a 24/7 and 365 days/degree learning pedagogy is not an easy task; however, this is the single most important factor in meeting the needs of ALL children - including those who acquire information quickly and have a passion and interest in specific subjects and/or topics!

Due to our ability to access technology on demand, students are continually learning. They are interactively strategizing with players from multiple countries when playing games, in the evening at home. Access to wonderful iPad apps such as BrainPop has them acquiring new skills on car trips to and from soccer practice or on Sunday morning in their PJ's while doing handstands.

In a traditional school setting, our students left us...and for the most part...returned in the fall to pick up where we left off. However, the use and accessibility of technology has resulted in student learning that is asynchronous, differentiated and unpredictable. Our children explore their passions and interests, with or without us! It is for this reason that education must make a paradigm shift in how we educate our children with 21st Century Skills.
Why do we need to educate our children differently?

Industrialized Model of education needs to go!

1. What career (other than 'school') requires students to be good at everything... 

If we continue to ask our children to be good at everything (reading,  writing, math, science, social studies) and lock them into a learning "box," we will never allow them to explore and expand their strengths to find out what they are truly capable of!

2. Not everyone learns the same way...

Within the confines of a school building and classroom, our children will never be exposed to the plethora of ways that one can learn. We need to redefine everything and acknowledge that learning occurs everywhere and all the time. Focusing on extending learning, thinking and creating, is what our schools should be doing!

Honor each child's unique learning style!

3. Computational Thinking and Computer Science needs to be part of every classroom!

Computer science is about solving the world's problems. Students can contribute to helping the world each and every day. Collaboration, creativity, communication, and critical thinking must be the focus!

Articles and Book by: Heidi WIlliams