Thursday, October 16, 2008

Life Long Learning

Life long learning. An often banded about turn of phrase since the turn of the century. What does it really involve? What do we need to do in our schools to ensure students are leaving with the necessary skills, attitudes and dispositions to continue to learn throughout life? What needs to take place in our classrooms so that students build confidence around knowing 'what to do when they don't know what to do'? Honestly how many times a day would a students truly be challenged and put in a situation where they are 'stuck'? Isn't it experiencing these 'I'm stuck' situations that true learning occurs?
Students responses are always enlightening - I quizzed some students recently about what teachers could improve on. The responses 'stop teaching us stuff we already know' certainly caused some deep reflection. What percentage of kids feel challenged on a daily basis? How many learn in-spite of what we do?
One needs to direct some more conversations with students and teachers about getting to that ZPD (Zone of Proximal Development) Vygotsky. After all isn't that the best way to develop Life Long Learning attitudes and dispositions?

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