Personalized Learning

The Fairbanks School district is currently rolling out Personalized Learning in a big way. Schools are having parent night open houses to showcase the concept with parents visiting classrooms set up with individual learning stations and teachers are presenting how they will implement the concept through project work and computer-aided instructional modules. I thought the article did a good job at identifying pros and cons. Here is another article that does similar:

It seems clear that defining and implementing personalized learning within a specific school, classroom, and subject can be a huge challenge. Transitioning from standard teaching methodologies means a huge shift in perspective and planning and preparation. At my school, the staff is still exploring how personalized learning will be embraced as a school goal. In my classroom, it seems very difficult to accomplish as there are 24+ students and limited resources. Our students would benefit greatly from the pros of personalized instruction such as working at their own pace and in ways that capitalize on their individual learning strengths. However, I am not sure it is very workable for the biology and earth science curriculum. Currently, my mentor used a variety of activities to support varied ways of learning (4-square, labs, notes, video) but the class works in tandem on these activities and keeps a similar pace. Students whole fall behind have the responsibility of catching up. Faster students may not be as challenged as they might be with personalized learning strategies.

I think there is room to use computer aided instruction to add a personalized learning component to the science classes. There are enough Chromebooks for all students and they enjoy working on them. Planning time to revise curriculum delivery is the major limiting factor.



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