Matt Renwick of Reading by Example has invited educators to a month-long book club study of his Digital Student Portfolios ebook. Read his overview intro post here and join the Google+ Community. It promises to be a great learning experience.
Chapter One: Purposes for Digital Portfolios
First, digital portfolios reinforce meaningful and purposeful learning: they represent the student’s choice in reflection and sharing to their audience as well as the school; they differentiate for the learners and their goals, and are part of the daily work of students as creators and designers of their own learning in collaboration with the teacher and peers. This picture tells more than any standardized test score, report card grade, or mark on a piece of work.
Technology provides a variety of tools through which students can explain their growth and their mastery. Technology allows students more options in the content, and can choose relevant topics; access to current events and historical documents online allow the curriculum to be relevant. By sharing on line, others can participate with feedback of celebration and of suggestions. Technology allows teacher and learner work to be comprehensive and personalized.
Thinking about the Digital — It’s about engagement, so what is the:
Available — for students to connect
Connective — bandwidth
Compatible — with needs of learner
Allocation — time, funding, training
Resources — why that tool?
Content — how connects to expected essential understandings
Integration — with curriculum, instruction, assessment to support learning
Agency — that students may self-assess and revise to improve
Visible — learning is sharable
Independence — able to self-assess and work towards potential
Inquiry — results in further thoughts and research
Empathy — engaging in conversations, feedback, and learning with others
How do we lead others?
I appreciated the review by Matt Renwick of Michael Fullen’s book The Principal. I believe the in the concept of “learning leaders,” which the principal must be, because in my classroom, I must learn along side my students as the lead learner there. I cannot forget what it means to be a learner, and I will learn about and from my students. A principal should do the same with his/her staff. Read the article for other key points.
And what are we learning?
In my classroom, we learn for two purposes: the state requirements and the student’s interests and development as a whole person.
In our school, we learn for two purposes: the state/federal requirements and the practices, pedagogy, and essential principles that engage students and empower them to self-directed learning.