Thursday, 6 August 2015

Beyond Academics: What a Holistic Approach to Learning Could Look Like

I saw this article on Facebook the other day and thought it sounded very like Montessori.

This article is great reading but if you don't have the chance to read it all I have copied sections from it for you to read and ponder on. 

Academics aren’t everything: Teachers often see themselves as responsible for specific academic content, but schools will never see the success they desire without accounting for some of the non-cognitive factors that play a role in development. The report points out that adults must act with a holistic approach to learning: “Cognition, emotion, affect, and behavior are reflexive, mutually reinforcing, and inextricably associated with one another as a part of development and learning. Adults will make little headway if they target only one particular component or subcomponent in isolation.”

The focus on testing and accountability in school undermines educators’ ability to provide developmental experiences. “Testing has started to define what matters in schools and that’s how we think about what is successful,” Nagaoka said. This way of thinking creates incentives for school leaders, teachers and parents to focus on only on the academic content, while neglecting the many other factors that lead to success. In many cases schools have lost sight of what they want their students to become in favor of high test scores, which might not get them anything in the real world.

Learning happens throughout life, not just at school. 

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