Coast/Metro 2011-2011 Series Speaker: Karen Hume
Tuned Out: Engaging the 21st Century Learner
I was lucky enough to get this chance to hear Karen Hume speak on engagement, especially since this is something that I think about in my own teaching. (ie, as an English teacher, what can I do to promote engagement, when students have to be in my class?)
Today was mostly an introduction to the ideas from her latest book. It sounds like follow-up sessions will go into greater detail about the five areas that promote student engagement and achievement.
A few things that stood out during Karen’s talk:
  • Doug Willms:  “The longer students remain in school, the less likely they are to be intellectually engaged.”
  • Emotions trump everything in learning and engagement.
  • Disengagement among students tends to kick in starting at grade 6, and worsens from grades 7-10.
  • “Disengagement is simply the result of unfulfilled needs.” — Lee Colan
  • For students to develop academic competency and engagement, they need:
    • to feel connected to an adult with high expectations who provides support, feedback and recognition;
    • to understand the purpose and relevancy of tasks
    • challenging work
    • autonomy
    • confidence
  • If teachers aren’t engaged, then students won’t be either.
  • To be engaged, teachers need:
    • connection (to colleagues, admin)
    • sense of purpose (and a shared sense of purpose)
    • challenge
    • autonomy (and opportunity to get involved in decisions, but does not mean working alone)
Lots to think about!
Homework for next session:
-bring an object that signifies 21st century learning
-results from quizzes on our own learner preferences
-thoughts from whatever we’ve worked on in the meantime
-art supplies (the focus will be on creativity and engagement)