Showing posts with label independent work. Show all posts
Showing posts with label independent work. Show all posts

Wednesday, 18 April 2018

Developing Unique Solutions to Open-Ended Problems

The ability to develop solutions to open-ended problems is an important skill in a knowledge-based economy. Our Grade 9 Science students had an opportunity to gain practice with this skill through the culminating project in the Electricity unit.
 
Using knowledge developed in the unit, students had to design and build an electrical gadget. This gadget had to include an energy source (battery), conducting wires, and multiple loads (lights, motors, etc.) Students also had to use ammeters and voltmeters to measure their gadget’s current and voltage, and predict how much energy the gadget would use over a 24 hour-period.

 
Very few initial designs produced the desired result. Consequently, students were forced to continually re-think their initial assumptions and try another approach, which is a key element of effective problem solving. This process also enabled students to demonstrate perseverance and engage in meaningful teamwork, another essential element of problem solving.
 
 
Overall, this project enabled students to take risks in thinking and creating, which will be immensely helpful as they move forward with their learning at Greenwood and beyond.

Monday, 27 November 2017

Supporting Self-Directed Learning


Giving students opportunities to self-direct their learning within the classroom is a tremendous way to enhance student engagement and confidence.
Most of our high school math classes use an approach that allows students some choice in how they learn. Students can work individually using an online lesson prepared by Greenwood teachers or in small groups.

Some of our math classes are co-taught, which means there are two teachers in the room. This approach allows students to get direct instruction from one teacher, while the other teacher facilitates group learning. This approach is effective, as students use class time efficiently and learn in a way that meets their individual needs.


According to our students, having input into how you learn makes learning engaging. Our alumni tell us that this approach equips them with the high level of independence required to succeed in postsecondary studies.


  

Thursday, 20 October 2016

More Choice, Less Noise

Modelled on facilities found on university campuses, the Learning Commons offers a variety
of work areas including collaborative study rooms, independent work areas and soft seating.

When you walk into Greenwood’s Learning Commons, the first thing that strikes you is how purposefully students are working. Whether they’re coming in early, on a spare or on their lunch break, students have been making wonderful use of the Commons as a quiet work and study space.

Modelled on facilities found on university campuses, the Learning Commons offers a variety of work areas including collaborative study rooms, independent work areas and soft seating. Whiteboards and projection screens located in these breakout rooms are frequently filled with idea-building and test preparation.


Whiteboards and projection screens facilitate
collaborative idea-building and test preparation.


What do students think?


Here’s what a few Grade 12 students have to say about this new workspace:

“In the old building, it was hard to find a spot where it was guaranteed to be quiet. There’s a mutual understanding that everyone here wants to keep the noise down, too.”

“I’m more motivated to work when others around me are working.”

“The breakout rooms are great for having quiet conversations and doing group work without disturbing other people.”

“A lot of people from our grade are using this space, so you can always find someone else who is working on the subject you’re studying.”