Time Must Be A Variable For Student Success
Nowhere in my readings have I found encouragement and funds to reward systems that are trying to build an educational environment based on students’ mastery and making time a variable. As long as time is fixed, then student progress is what is variable within the fixed time frame. Thus, 30% of the student population is punished through failures.
If we moved in core areas - mainly English and Math - to Computer Based Learning ("CBL" or Computer Assisted Instruction “CAI”), the student becomes the class and each student is given time to master the materials. Further, what is learned becomes a tool for future learning. In science and social studies, projects that are meaningful to students can be agreed and assigned. Small groups then may use technology for research purposes as well as to make powerpoint presentations to fellow students. This transformation cannot be done without the community, without curriculum design and without teachers who are trained to utilize the environment correctly.
Student management also is important so that the teacher, the student and the parent see the progress of each student. This type of system provides accessibility to all partners, including the principal and state, as well as a vehicle to help determine the effectiveness of the learning environment in the classroom.
If you know of locations where the above model is being used, please let me know. Overall, appreciate your thoughts on transforming our educational system to treat each student as the class.