Summer of learning – ShortCourse day 2 – inquiry & engagement

Great presentation by Norm Bradley who represented SD23 very well, but much of my mind is spinning on two other presentations from today’s busy day (might be another post on the relationship piece later…;-)

Inquiry – a great presentation by Judy Halbert & Linda Kaser

Promoting school based inquiry – using ‘hunches’ to work out the ‘what’ and ‘why’ something is happening. Using a spiral (version of a feedback loop) to:
Scan (observe what is going on with our learners)
Focusing (working out what the focus needs to be)
Developing a hunch (a hypothesis)
Learning (how & where we can learn more about what to do
Taking Action (what will be done DIFFERENTLY – not more of the same)
Checking (has enough of a difference been made)

And then a challenge was made, and I found my first week (or more) project –

Spirals of inquiry: Scanning- 4 questions every student and why they matter – a cognitive leadership tool
Can you name two adults who will believe you will be successful in life
Where are YOU going with your learning
How is it going?
Where to next?

And the. With each adult and child in the learning community (albeit not at the same time):
10×2 = 10 days in a row with a 2 minute chat (not about schooling)

Gotta get thinking about my/our thinking


Engagement has long been of concern – Nothing new – but why an issue of late – and why attached to 21st C skills, PBL, etc

Start with Why go to What and then How (won’t be talking about this as there are 1000s of entry points. Need to nail:

Why talking about engagement:

What is engagement:

#1- why is engagement important? Engagement leads to Learning which leads to Achievement.

Can’t raise long term achievement results when focused on achievement – too easy to focus on the outcome – short term gain (but not foundational change) and ‘teach to the test’

Even focusing on learning may jot be far enough upstream. Gotta focus on engagement.

Why more important today? Or different today? – because we are broadening what achievement is – separating content and competencies.

UNESCO report on what future learners ‘need’
Millennial tensions during time of report – education for the 21st C
They came up with 4 pillars of Education
To know
To do
To live together
To be

How to deal with this with a bloated curriculum (bullets can become trivia)

Time to rethink the curriculum – esp the fragmentation of ‘subjects’ artificial creation to…create dept heads? Label report cards? Who knows/cares

The permanent residue of being educated: critical thinking creative thinking communication collaborative how do you know if/when learner is engaged – CEA study found 3
Social engagement
Academic engagement
Intellectual engagement

What do you do in school today report:

When asking about engagement, we often default to intensity – we need to engage types of engagement.
Compliance (just do it)
Attention (teacher becomes performer to ‘push the rock up,the hill’)
— moving to intrinsic engagement – moving from ‘sage on the stage’ to ‘guy on the side’
Connected (has meaning – want to learn not just curious – a snowball going downhill)
Impassioned (not every kid reaches this at same time – transformational)

In other words, whether or not a learner is engaged is merely the tip of the iceberg and much more work is to follow!


About technolandy

Principaling on the Pacific in Powell River BC Pushing 'technologization' in education: blending technology and curriculum seamlessly. Advocate for better understanding of Anxiety in Education (and use of self-regulation) Utilizing ePortfolios & Descriptive Feedback to personalize learning!
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