Bottle Flipping is sequestered to the back deck in the Robinson household. If you don't know what I am talking about, see this Dude Perfect video:
It is all the rage. I see it at soccer practices. At breakfast. In my class. In the car. I am not sure, but I think it actually can cause parental madness.
But I can't ban it all together. To see someone work to perfect something must be pondered as an educator. It is the equivalent of kids developing their skateboarding skills, practicing that ollie over and over and over again until they get it just right. It causes me to ask myself what causes this drive. And how can I utilize this for learning. When we tap into students' own drive, learning is transformed from blowing on embers to managing a blaze.
This is the second in a series of posts that look at the Connections-based Learning Collaboration Lens. In the previous post we examined what it means to empathize local and global needs. Now that my students have discovered needs that they want to address in response to the Dominican Republic provocation, the next step is to bring out students' own learning goals. Here is where bottle flipping meets school. Can we tap into students' own interests while guiding them in meaningful directions? Can we construct learning goals together?
Co-construct Learning Goals
In our Engineering Brightness CBL, the students were asked to ponder the connection. An answer to the light poverty in the Dominican Republic is a natural response. Hearing about the need for safe efficient light sources leads to students to consider how they can help. In our case, after brainstorming and discussing the Dominican Republic connection, the students were to write down their goals for learning.
I comment on these goals encouraging students to elaborate, press into, or try a different direction for their goals. Often students have ideas on what they want to do, but I encourage them to develop what they want to learn. As I do this, I keep in mind my own goals for this CBL. In this case, my goals stem from the competencies that I selected from the new British Columbia curriculum. They look like this:
Students also get to make their own rubric that looks at the focuses of the CBL Collaboration Lens, considering ideas such as Design, Network, Create, and Celebrate as they construct their learning goals. Later, this rubric will be used to self-assess after the students receive meaningful feedback on their digital portfolios.
You might notice that below each rubric strand is a place for evidence. When I ask the students to do a final evaluation, they need to add evidence that supports how they assess themselves. I take a copy of these Co-construction sheets and then give them back to the students. They can use these sheets to guide them as they develop their proposal and carry on with their work. Will their own goals engage them as much as bottle flipping? Time will tell.
The proposals the students came up with are amazing. I am going to outline them in the next post: Dream a Proposal | #CBL Collaboration Lens. Here is a little taste of what one group came up with:
Consider partnering with us as we fight light poverty in the Dominican Republic