Student A loves school. Student A thrives on the challenge of a test. Student A studies three nights ahead of every exam. Student A is driven by marks and grades. Student A is good at “playing school”. School comes quite naturally to student A. Student A wants to be told what to do to get the grade. Student A participates in every class discussion and is proud of accomplishments. Student A answers every homework question as soon as student A gets home from school.
Student A loves tests and exams.
Student A gets good grades and wants to be successful.
Student A is not a risk-taker because student A is mark driven.
Student A is not a critical-thinker because there is too much risk in not getting an “A”.
Student A won’t take a risk, it’s unsafe.
Student B is disengaged. Student B doesn’t care much for school. Student B has been told by the system that student B is dumb. Student B has never been taught how to take a test, yet said test determines student B’s profile. Student B doesn’t study much. Student B’s fixed mindset controls decisions around school activities. Student B doesn’t often complete homework. Student B wants to do homework, but quite often doesn’t know how. Incomplete homework ruins student B’s night. Student B can’t sleep because student B is afraid.
Student B is afraid of tests and exams.
Student B fears grades and marks but wants to be successful.
Student B is not a risk-taker because it’s unsafe.
Student B is not a critical thinker because student B thinks student A has all the answers.
Student B won’t take a risk, it’s unsafe.
Employers want risk takers. Employers want problem solvers. Employers want communicators. Employers want collaborators. Employers want people to learn from failures. Failure is an opportunity for growth and reflection. Employers want a growth mindset. Neither Student A nor student B fit this profile.
At school, failure is bad. Staying in at recess is scary. Repeating courses is scary. Telling mom “I failed” is scary. Failure is bad. Failure often leads to punishment. Bad bad bad.
This whole 21st century educational pedagogy thing – it’s not about just using technology. It’s not about just using iPads or twitter. It’s about embedding technology so deeply that student B has a chance. Technology is not an event. Technology is scaffolding.
21st century pedagogy is about equity. Fairness is not sameness. Fairness is not everybody gets the same, but everybody gets what they need.