Myth Busting!

 Misconception    Primary Innovation Studio
Students are not required to meet Colorado State and district Standards. Units and explorations are planned according to district and Colorado State Standards. Students are expected to perform appropriately and are aligned with other MHE Second Grade Classrooms. However, the heart of the studio is:

STUDENTS FIRST, STANDARDS SECOND
There is no structure, kids run wild. There is a very established, practiced and revisited routine and classroom culture of learning routines. Integrity is a sound tenet of the space, and is embraced and discussed ALWAYS.
Students who prove that they can show learning individually get that chance. Those who are not ready, get a higher level of “teacher” direction. It’s all about the student and his/her needs. Guided reading, writing and math groups occur daily.
Students design their own learning experiences. While personalized learning paths are embraced, students are coached and supported as they explore and respond to content; however, in unique ways.
There is lots of ‘free’ time. Students have content to embrace and practice through jobs and responsibilities. They are continually supported and their path is individualized according to their unique needs.
It is never quiet. There is always a buzz in the classroom; however, students who need quiet spaces are encouraged to find them and/or their needs are addressed and supported.
There is no research to support this environment. Last year, my students exceeded past students’ gains, especially in the areas of reading fluency and the use higher level vocabulary. In mathematics, students’ exposure to higher level concepts increased and struggling students were offered more support opportunities. Students’ critical thinking skills were documented and noted through writing samples and verbal skills.
Students just play instead of learn. Yes, students do play and they do have fun as they are involved in learning experiences which are engaging, hands on and student centered. Joyful play is at the heart of learning for anyone.
 Students use technology too much. In the Primary Innovation Studio, technology is a tool just like a pencil, paper, a paint brush or a book. Students use tech when they need it and/or when it fits their learning challenge. There is not a ‘tech time’ or tons of direct instruction in regard to using tech. It is just there like all of the other materials in a learning environment. You won’t hear this: “Okay kids, it’s IPAD time.”
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2 thoughts on “Myth Busting!

  1. You have a way of expressing all the things I am trying to wrap my head around these days! I love how yo clarified each of these “myths” about 21st century learning. You know what is right for kids and you have created a learning space that embraces that! Thank you for pioneering this and inspiring me to be a better teacher.

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