I have been thinking a lot in recent years about innovative teaching ideas and am always on the lookout for them.
Williston teachers, in particular, reflect current educational thinking about how to maintain a vibrant and relevant learning environment. Williston emphasizes five Cs across our program: character, critical thinking, communication, collaboration, and creativity.
In the English department at the end of the term, all members of the class of 2015 participated in “a paper of many parts” as they studied Romeo and Juliet. The portfolio included assignments that emphasized the five Cs; students wrote a monologue in the voice of a minor character, a sonnet in iambic pentameter, a critical analysis of a passage, and interviewed someone who had read the play but was not a ninth grade student.
While portfolio assessment is certainly nothing new, the approach to this particular assignment is part of a holistic and thoughtful methodology.
Our students learned skills they will need to be successful for Century 21.5 (as I like to call that future time when the class of 2015 will have become mature professionals).
We hear a lot about preparing students for the 21st century, but it’s also worth remembering that we are into our second decade already.
So the real point is that Williston’s curriculum—as with our ninth grade program, which encourages the collaboration and empathy (intrinsic to working with those who do not necessarily share the same background or perspectives)—is constantly evolving as we look toward the future.
Do you agree? Have your own experience to share? Let me know in the comments section below!