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Past or Present Paradigms of Thinking

Past or Present Paradigms of Thinking

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Published by Michael King
This article is written for the purpose of providing the reader with information on how to adopt technology into the Common Core by relooking at traditional classroom tools and transitioning into new ways of teaching and learning. The Digital Sandbox explores the future of learning through the recreation of 21st Century learning environments. Visit the Digital Sandbox: http://digitalsandbox.weebly.com/
This article is written for the purpose of providing the reader with information on how to adopt technology into the Common Core by relooking at traditional classroom tools and transitioning into new ways of teaching and learning. The Digital Sandbox explores the future of learning through the recreation of 21st Century learning environments. Visit the Digital Sandbox: http://digitalsandbox.weebly.com/

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Published by: Michael King on Jul 10, 2011
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PAST OR PRESENT PARADIGMS OF THINKING

By Mike King Published: July 10, 2011

In every story there is a story line and what keeps the story line interesting is the back stories.
Today we are going to tell the story of Adopting Technology into the Common Core. We are also going to tell the back stories of how students will learn best in the Common Core. These back stories will be about inflection points, and past or present paradigms of thinking. The new back stories will be about thinking outside of the box for a new generation, a new generation of learners who will be asked to perform authentically while thinking abstractly.

Let's take one example of an inflection point as it might be related to the future. This back story concerns the launching of Netscape as Thomas Friedman points out the importance of “inflection points” in history. You know, inflection points, the point in a curve at which it changes direction from convex to concave, or vice versa. Friedman states in his book entitled the World is Flat that when Netscape was launched “We went from a world where value was created in vertical silos of command and control to one in which value is created horizontally on this platform by who you connect and collaborate with… I would argue that shift from command-and-control to connect-and-collaborate is the mother of all inflection points. … It is the biggest event, I would argue, to change human beings and how they interact, since Guttenberg invented the printing press.” Now how does this back story on inflection

points relate to the plot of our story -- Education is at an inflection point – a strategic opportunity to change course or direction.

We are now introduced to the next back story of a paradigm, a paradigm of dysfunctional proportions , the idea of accountability as established through No Child Left Behind. A paradigm is a set of rules and regulations that does two things: (1) it establishes boundaries; and (2) it tells you how to behave inside the boundaries in order to be successful. But what if the paradigm is wrong? What if the boundaries that are set for you are out of proportion to how you measure success? In this case the back story of No Child Left Behind.

A little bit too late, or is it a little bit misunderstood? "Our education system was never designed to deliver the kind of results now needed to equip students for today's world- and tomorrow's. The system was originally created for a very different world. To respond appropriately, we need to rethink and redesign." The problem with this statement is that it was published in 2006 which advocates the old paradigm of thought as the book entitled "Change Leadership," is operating under the premises of No Child Left behind. What is prominent in this back story is the failure to recognize a system that forces us to continue to improve the current system, a system designed in reporting progress on two dichotomy lines, success or failure.

In April of 2011 the National Center for Fair & Open Testing

concluded that practices

implemented through NCLB have been unsuccessful. NCLB has not succeeded, with rare exception, in even maintaining the previous rates of improvement. In a recent June 13th, 2011 article of "eSchool News" the Secretary of Education, Arne Duncan, was reported as saying, "that 82 percent of U.S. schools could be labeled failures in the year 2012 if No Child Left

Behind isn’t changed." This statement only reinforces popular opinion that the majority predict that no one state will meet the law’s goal of having 100 percent of students proficient in math and reading by 2014.

These statements of predicted failure for public education under the NCLB Act is articulated in another way in terms of lack of authenticity in an article November 2008 article “Why Rising Test Scores May Not Equal Increased Student Learning.” In the article the author David Berliner states, "It is not uncommon for 20-60 school days per year to be spent in testpreparation activities. Children trained to answer questions are drilled on items that will appear on their test. But that is not education. It is training. It is less clear that any authentic learning has occurred.” Have we now after ten years of struggling with the reality of the first paradigm, finally came to grips that the educational system is in fact, in need of reauthorization?

Now that leads us back to the plot of the story and its most essential question, "What is reauthorization?" Reauthorization is simply moving away from the first paradigm as we are now in a paradigm shift. A paradigm shift is discovering problems that we cannot solve which triggers a catalyst in new ways of thinking. Thinking the Common Core way. A way to reach success for all as it is defined in college and career readiness. Yet we know that in every paradigm shift begins a new set of problems. It is the special set of problems that everyone in the field wants to be able to solve. But in the shift it becomes very complex in that no one has a clue as how to solve it.

This article is written for the purpose of providing the reader with information on how to adopt technology into the Common Core by relooking at traditional classroom tools and transitioning into new ways of teaching and learning. The Digital Sandbox explores the future of learning through the recreation of 21st Century learning environments. Visit the Digital Sandbox: http://digitalsandbox.weebly.com/

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