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Phenomenon-Based Learning

gtchat-03072017-phenomenon

Phenomenon-based learning is a cutting edge approach to education pioneered in Finland. It “does not include a strict set of rules, but rather comprises a combination of beliefs and best practices supported by ongoing research. In this approach, a classroom observes a real-life scenario or phenomenon – such as a current event or situation present in the student’s world – and analyzes it through an interdisciplinary approach.” [ref] In other words, it is the ultimate in project-based learning.

The benefits of phenomenon-based learning include showing students value in theories and information in the learning situation. Students use authentic methods, sources and tools; learning is intentional and goal-oriented.

Phenomenon-based learning is not without its critics. They believe it stretches students too thin; they become deterred from excelling in a particular field. Veteran teachers have resisted phenomenon-based learning; reluctant to give up authority in the classroom to students. They question the lack of providing prior knowledge to students before embarking on phenomenon-based learning. News reports in error stated that phenomenon-based learning replaces teaching traditional subjects which it does not.

Other types of learning can complement phenomenon-based learning. These include project-based learning; Socratic learning; and flipped-classrooms. It also works well with makerspaces and is responsive to student voice. Lisa Van Gemert added, “Essential Questions and the Depth & Complexity models both complement it as well.”

Phenomenon-based learning  can be used to meet the diverse needs of all students. Students from all backgrounds benefit from the structure and flexibility of phenomenon-based learning. Teachers can decide on potential project topics based on students background knowledge and personal experiences.

What strategies can teachers use to transition to phenomenon-based learning? Teachers should be open to altering teaching routines and mindsets; become well-versed in collaborative teaching. Transitioning to phenomenon-based learning does not mean abandoning traditional subject-based teaching. A transcript of this chat can be found at Storify.

 

Global #gtchat Powered by the Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented  is a weekly chat on Twitter. Join us Tuesdays at 8E/7C/6M/5P in the U.S. and Wednesdays at 13.00 NZST/11.00 AEST/Midnight UK  to discuss current topics in the gifted community and meet experts in the field. Transcripts of our weekly chats can be found at Storify. Our Facebook Page provides information on the chat and news & information regarding the gifted community. Also, checkout our Pinterest Page and Playlist on YouTube.

Head Shot 2014-07-14  About the author: Lisa Conrad is the Moderator of Global #gtchat Powered        by TAGT and Social Media Manager of the Global #gtchat Community. She is a longtime  advocate for gifted children and also blogs at  Gifted Parenting Support. Lisa can be contacted at: gtchatmod@gmail.com

Links:

Phenomenon-Based Learning: What is PBL?

Personally Meaningful Learning through Phenomenon-Based Classes

Finland: Replacing Subject with Phenomenon Based Learning (YouTube 3:39) https://goo.gl/1ErY7w

Finland’s Phenomenon Based Learning (YouTube 7:10) https://goo.gl/LYY6Ms

Finland Education Reform Introduces Phenomenon-Based Teaching

How We Learn: The Surprising Truth About When, Where & Why It Happens (Amazon)

Finland’s School Reforms Won’t Scrap Subjects Altogether

Phenomenon Based Learning Teaching by Topics

General Aspects of Basic Education Curriculum Reform 2016 Finland (pdf)

Notes on the School of the Future and the Future of Learning 

Using Physical Science Gadgets & Gizmos, Grades 6-8: Phenomenon-Based Learning (Hawker Brownlow)

Learning and Teaching with Phenomenon

Elementary Science Phenomena Checklist and Bank (Google Doc)

Concern, Creativity, Compliance: Phenomenon of Digital Game-Based Learning in Norwegian Education

How to Come Up With an Engaging Phenomenon to Anchor a Unit (pdf)

Switching Gears into Transdisciplinary Learning

Georgia Science Teachers: Science GSE Phenomena Bank

Phenomenon Based Learning Rubric (pdf)

Work the Matters: The Teacher’s Guide to Project-Based Learning (pdf)

Phenomenon for NGSS (Next Generation Science Standards)

Using Phenomena in NGSS-Designed Lessons and Units (pdf)

Qualities of a Good Anchor Phenomenon for a Coherent Sequence of Science Lessons (pdf)

Phenomenon-based Learning: A Case Study

Jack Andraka: A Promising Test for Pancreatic Cancer … from a Teenager (TED talk)

Photo courtesy of Pixabay   CC0 Public Domain

Graphic courtesy of Lisa Conrad.

Is STEM a Viable Alternative to a Gifted Program?

STEM Alternative

STEM has become an alternative in some U.S. school districts for gifted programming. In order to understand the reasoning behind this decision, our chat first focused on whether or not school districts should be required to offer a gifted program at all. Most people agreed that it was necessary, but also reasoned that the program must be funded and properly administered by knowledgeable faculty and staff.

Strong opinions were voiced concerning the need to provide all students what they need to meet their potential at any level. The concept of mastery-based education was introduced as an alternative for education which in part could eliminate the need for special academic programming. However, it was pointed out that STEM programs do little to address the social and emotional needs of gifted students.

Scientist

‘Is STEM a Viable Alternative to a Gifted Program?’ Many present felt it was not an alternative but should be a component part. Some had good experiences when STEM programs were combined with Ability Grouping. The addition of ‘A’ (arts) was welcomed by all.

The discussion then turned to finding some positive attributes of STEM programming if it is the only option available. Here are some of the responses- It was noted that a well done STEM program can increase a student’s appreciation for mathematics; offer a challenging curriculum which gifted students need; and provide increased interaction with professionals through mentoring & job shadowing.  Enhancing STEM programs by integrating communication, verbalization and writing skills as well as incorporating passion-based and project-based learning would improve these programs for gifted students. A more collegiate atmosphere in STEM courses could stimulate creative thought. A full transcript may be found on our Storify Page.

 

Global #gtchat Powered by the Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented is a weekly chat on Twitter. Join us Fridays at 7/6 C & 4 PT in the U.S., midnight in the UK and Saturdays 1 PM NZ/11 AM AEDT to discuss current topics in the gifted community and meet experts in the field. Transcripts of our weekly chats can be found at Storify. Our Facebook Pageprovides information on the chat and news & information regarding the gifted community.

Head Shot 2014-07-14About the author: Lisa Conrad is the Moderator of Global #gtchat Powered by TAGT and Social Media Manager of the Global #gtchat Community. She is a longtime advocate for gifted children and also blogs at Gifted Parenting Support. Lisa can be contacted at: gtchatmod@gmail.com

Links:

Gifted Education: Full STEAM Ahead NJAGC Annual Conference 2015

Gifted Children and STEM 

STEM: Meeting a Critical Demand for Excellence

Statewide Public High Schools for Advanced Students

National Consortium of Secondary #STEM Schools

STEM – Its Importance and Promise for Gifted Students (pdf)

Cultivating Talent: Gifted Children and STEM

STEM Resources for Educating Gifted Students (pdf)

STEM and Gifted Education: Questions and Answers for Parents (pdf)

STEM ming the Tide: Colorado Response to National Crisis in STEM Education (pdf)

STEM is Gifted Education

Partner with STEM to Enhance Opportunities for Gifted Children

STEM to STEAM Education for Gifted Students (Amazon)

Relationship Between #STEM Education & #Gifted Education – Part 1

Relationship Between #STEM Education & #Gifted Education – Part 2

Putting Art in #STEM

Energizing Your Gifted Students’ Creative Thinking & Imagination (Amazon)

Why did ‘nerd’ become a dirty word?

K – 12 Summer Programs from The Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented

Google Science Fair 2015

Is Your Gifted Student Being Supported in Public School?

Cybraryman’s STEM/STEAM Page

STEM vs. STEAM: Why The “A” Makes All The Difference

Partners Create STEM Hubs in Ogden Schools

The Value of STEM Education Infographic

 

STEM Graphic: Courtesy Lisa Conrad

Photo: Courtesy of Pixabay.

Honest Collaboration with Technology Our guest: Ginger Lewman

Ginger Lewman 2014

 Ginger Lewman

This week’s guest was Ginger Lewman. Ginger is a PBL and GT Keynoter/Consultant as well as a Google Certified Teacher based in Kansas. She is also Co-Creator of Life Practice PBL and of STEAMmaker

We first discussed some strategies to encourage reluctant educators to use 21st c. technologies in their classrooms. Ginger told us, “It’s a very complex question. Some don’t have access because of blocks, bandwidth or hardware issues beyond their control. If blocks are the issue, check out ‘Unmasking the Digital Truth‘ to find out the TRUTH to CIPA, COPPA, FERPA.” She went on to say, “Acknowledge it’s not all about tech and NOT about tools. It’s about learning, connecting, going deeper – which tech supports.”

Developing modern communication skills by providing authentic learning opportunities was considered next. Teachers must first understand the importance of digital citizenship and then model the use of such resources as Kidblog, Edmodo, Vidconf, and social media platforms. Students today must also be able to find reliable information online. Ginger firmly believes that kids learn best by doing and encourages Project-based Learning. Jo Freitag of Gifted Resources pointed out that participation in global projects can help build modern communication skills.”

What are some of Ginger’s favorite essential learning tools available to teachers in collaboration with technology? For starters, Google Hangout, Skype, and Facetime. She also likes Twitter, Facebook and Google+. Ginger will be sharing even more tools during her presentations at TAGT 2014 ‘In Focus’ Conference in December. A full transcript of the chat can be found on our Storify Page.

 

Ginger Lewman will be at TAGT’s Annual Conference 2014 Dec 3rd  & 4th  in Fort Worth, TX. You can register for the TAGT 2014 Annual Conference here.

 

Global #gtchat Powered by the Texas Association for the Gifted and Talented is a weekly chat on Twitter. Join us Fridays at 7/6 C & 4 PT in the U.S., midnight in the UK and Saturdays 1 PM NZ/11 AM AEDT to discuss current topics in the gifted community and meet experts in the field. Transcripts of our weekly chats can be found at Storify. Our Facebook Pageprovides information on the chat and news & information regarding the gifted community.

Head Shot 2014-07-14About the author: Lisa Conrad is the Moderator of Global #gtchat Powered by TAGT and Social Media Manager of the Global #gtchat Community. She is a longtime advocate for gifted children and also blogs at Gifted Parenting Support. Lisa can be contacted at: gtchatmod@gmail.com

 

Links:

Time to Debunk Those PBL Myths

Ginger Lewman’s Livebinder

Apps for Gifted and High-Ability Learners from Ginger Lewman at Livebinder

Apps for Gifted Kids  Hoagies Gifted

Edupreneur from @GingerLewman

Improving Google Classroom for Students Around the World

GingerLewman at ESSDACK

Meet GingerLewman at Keynote.com

TeachePBL-PLC at ESSDACK: 6th Grader Reflection (YouTube)

Evil Teacher Traps in the PBL Environment

Cybraryman’s Technology Pages

Cybraryman’s Project Based Learning Pages

Cybraryman’s Google Docs, Forms, Drive

Cybraryman’s Google Hangout

Cybraryman’s The 4 Cs+

Owning Problems … and Results

Do It On Their T.E.R.M.S.

LifePractice PBL

Why Project Based Learning (PBL)?

Project Based Learning from Edutopia

The Secret to Encouraging Reluctant Teachers to Use Ed Tech

Project Based Learning on Pinterest

Twitter for Education on Pinterest 

Your Digital Dad (Free download) from Kevin Honeycutt

Creativity and Creation Apps for the iPad Livebinder from Ginger Lewman

Report: Teachers Better at Using Tech than Digital Native Students

#gtchat Showcase of TAGT ’12 Speakers: Dr. Carolyn Coil

On Friday, October 5th, #gtchat hosted the first in a series of chats with speakers at the upcoming TAGT ’12 Conference in Dallas, TX this November 28th through the 30th which will include both educators and parents. Participants at chat were from 13 states and 4 countries.

Dr. Carolyn Coil was our guest and she talked about two presentations she will be giving at the conference ~ “21st Century Self-Management Skills for Gifted Students” and “Advanced Activities/Assessments Focusing on Rigor, Higher-Level Thinking & Problem Solving”. Carolyn’s remarks were well received by chat participants with many retweets throughout the session. Brian Housand, a former student of Carolyn’s and a speaker at the TAGT Conference, was present and added many valuable comments as well.

Links:

Assessing Gifted Assessment Tools

Carolyn Coil’s website

Carolyn Coil at Pieces of Leaning

Carolyn Coil on Amazon

Standards-Based Activities & Assessments for the Differentiated Classroom (pdf)

Standards-Based Activities & Assessments for the Differentiated Classroom (video)

 Carolyn Coil at #TAGT2012 Annual Conference

An Introduction to Differentiation (Carolyn Coil’s Blog)

Ideas on ProjectBasedLearning from Edutopia

TAGT ’12 Session Planner

BagtheWeb on PBLs

 

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