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Measuring Skills for 21st Century Education - educationsector.org -November 2008

Measuring Skills for 21st Century Education - educationsector.org -November 2008

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Published by Dennis Ashendorf
“The common idea that we can teach thinking without a solid foundation of knowledge must be abandoned, notes Lauren Resnick, a professor of psychology at the University of Pittsburgh, in a new report from Education Sector, Measuring Skills for the 21st Century.

“So must the idea that we can teach knowledge without engaging students in thinking. Knowledge and thinking must be intimately joined.”

The report is by Ed Sector’s senior policy analyst, Ellen Silva, who notes:

The belief that there should be a solid, specific, and shared core curriculum, an idea advanced most notably by the nonprofit Core Knowledge Foundation, founded and led by former professor and literary scholar, E.D. Hirsch Jr., is not at odds with this approach. The Core Knowledge curriculum supports the point that learning factual knowledge and the ability to apply, analyze, and solve problems go hand-in-hand. Teachers using the Core Knowledge approach do not stress rote memorization of facts; they use an array of strategies including workshops, research projects, dramatizations, and collaborative learning groups because they know that students will learn best if they are exposed to both subject knowledge and ways to apply this knowledge at the same time.
“The common idea that we can teach thinking without a solid foundation of knowledge must be abandoned, notes Lauren Resnick, a professor of psychology at the University of Pittsburgh, in a new report from Education Sector, Measuring Skills for the 21st Century.

“So must the idea that we can teach knowledge without engaging students in thinking. Knowledge and thinking must be intimately joined.”

The report is by Ed Sector’s senior policy analyst, Ellen Silva, who notes:

The belief that there should be a solid, specific, and shared core curriculum, an idea advanced most notably by the nonprofit Core Knowledge Foundation, founded and led by former professor and literary scholar, E.D. Hirsch Jr., is not at odds with this approach. The Core Knowledge curriculum supports the point that learning factual knowledge and the ability to apply, analyze, and solve problems go hand-in-hand. Teachers using the Core Knowledge approach do not stress rote memorization of facts; they use an array of strategies including workshops, research projects, dramatizations, and collaborative learning groups because they know that students will learn best if they are exposed to both subject knowledge and ways to apply this knowledge at the same time.

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Published by: Dennis Ashendorf on Nov 11, 2008
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05/09/2014

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EDUCATION
SECTOR 
REPORTS
Measuring skills FOr THe 21sT CenTury 
By Elena Silva
Nvbr 2008
 
 ackNowledgemeNtS
ThankstomyEducationSectorcolleaguesKellyBathgate,KevinCarey,StaceyJordan,RobManwaring,RenéeRybak,andBillTuckerortheirhelpinthinkingabouttheissuesoassessmentandstudentlearningoutcomes,andtoThomasTochandAndrewRotherhamortheirsupportinthewritingandeditingothispaper.ThanksalsotoAbdulKargboorhissupportindesigninggraphicsandormattingthereport.RobinSmilesdeservesspecialthanksorhercareuleditinganddiligenceinmanagingtheproductionothisreport.IwouldalsoliketothankCeciliaLe,whocontributedsubstantialtimeandeorttothisprojectasaFordhamFelloworEducationSector,andClairaWilliams,whoalsoprovidedvaluableresearchassistance.Mysincereappreciationtothemanypeoplewhowerekindenoughtoreadandcommentonanearlierdratothispaper.Iamparticularlygrateultothestudents,teachers,anddirectorsatSt.Andrew’sSchoolinMiddletown,Delaware,andatNewTechnologyHighSchoolinNapa,Caliornia,whograciouslyhostedourvisitstotheirschoolsandclassroomsandspenthourscollectivelyspeakingtousabouttheirteachingandassessmentpractices.ThanksalsotoAn-MeChungotheCharlesStewartMottFoundationorherongoingsupportothiswork.ThisreportwasundedbytheCharlesStewartMottFoundation.EducationSectorthankstheoundationortheirsupport.Theviewsexpressedinthepaperarethoseotheauthoralone.
 aBoUt tHe aUtHoR
ELENA SILVA
isaseniorpolicyanalystatEducationSector,wheresheoverseestheorganization’steacherqualitywork.Shecanbereachedatesilva@educationsector.org.
 aBoUt edUcatIoN SectoR
EducationSectorisanindependentthinktankthatchallengesconventionalthinkingineducationpolicy.Weareanonprot,nonpartisanorganizationcommittedtoachievingmeasurableimpactineducation,bothbyimprovingexistingreorminitiativesandbydevelopingnew,innovativesolutionstoournation’smostpressingeducationproblems.
© Copyright 2008 Education Sector.Education Sector encourages the ree use, reproduction, and distribution o our  ideas, perspectives, and analysis. Our Creative Commons licensing allows or the noncommercial use o all Education Sector authored or commissioned materials.We require attribution or all use. For more inormation and instructions on the com- mercial use o our materials, please visit our Web site, www.educationsector.org.
1201ConnecticutAve.,N.W.,Suite850,Washington,D.C.20036202.552.2840•www.educationsector.org

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