Posted by Christy Williams on May 13th, 2016
The way of the world is rapidly changing as the 21st century surges forward. In response to the acceleration, classrooms must evolve to ensure that students are prepared to be competitive in their educational and workforce environments. As instructors, you can best equip your students by creating a classroom environment conducive to supporting the growth of 21st century skills. Among the necessary components are problem based learning opportunities, collaboration, technology, digital enhancements, and global perspectives.
Problem Based Learning
Problem and project based learning is one of the premier characteristics of a future forward classroom. Students are exposed to concepts in relation to their real world relevance. They apply their learned skills towards solving actual problems. Problem based learning allows students an opportunity to learn beyond the textbook and strengthen critical thinking and problem solving skills. Learners can conduct research, access experts and produce presentations that provide a multi-faceted demonstration of knowledge and understanding.
Collaboration is a key component of future readyclassrooms. Learners engage in dialogue regularly and often work in teams to solve problems. Digital and technological advancements make it possible for students and educators to connect at greater levels. Documents, resources and projects can be shared and accessed by multiple parties. Collaboration is one of the most highlighted of the 21st century skills that employers are looking for in new hires.
Future ready classrooms are filled with technology. Internet access, tablets, and computers or laptops are available for student use. The resources are supported by software and relevant programs to enhance student growth and achievement. Students use technology to research and access answers as well as to produce artifacts and projects related to their learning.
With technological advances, classrooms have been able to go digital. Textbooks are now electronic files that can be accessed via a number of devices. The convenient accessibility extends to worksheets and other learning materials. The absence of paper allows students to research, cross reference, collaborate and more in a more organized fashion.
Today’s connectivity makes a global approach to learning both possible and expected. Students are no longer relegated to textbooks, limited perspectives or second hand accounts of other cultures. Instead, they are able to connect directly and learn about other countries and cultures first hand. The global access and exposure provides students with an opportunity to expand their learning from smaller concepts to a more global point of view.
A number of characteristics are evident in future ready classrooms. Ranging from globally reaching thought processes to digital material access, the features make classrooms a breeding ground for 21st century accomplishments. Classrooms that display these characteristics along with collaboration, technology and problem based learning provide substantial support for learners to become well equipped with 21st century skills. Your future ready classroom will likely be a launch pad for life and work success for your students.