Wednesday, September 30, 2009

21st Century Learners & Educators

According to the information on this week's website regarding the skills required of 21st century learners:

(1) How prepared are you right now to be a 21st century educator?  

(2) Which one skill (if any) do you wish you possessed greater knowledge, depth of understanding or sheer mastery as a 21st century educator?


  1. 1. As of now I feel that I'm fairly well prepared to be a 21st century eduactor. Unfortunately, I did feel like there are a lot of areas in which I could be stronger, and I don't feel confident that I will be as proficient in those areas as I would ideally like to be before I start teaching. I do feel that I have a strong basis and a general understanding of what skills students need to possess to be effective 21st century learners; enough so that I can bring a number of critical ideas and instruction to my classroom. Although I feel that there are areas where I could be stronger, I think that at least having an awareness and a strong grasp on some of the necessary skills gives me a basis from which to continue improving myself as a 21st century educator. I may not be 100% proficient as a 21st century educator before I begin teaching, but I do think that I will be able to continue to build those skills within my classroom, and hopefully throughout my teaching career.

    2. Ideally I would like to have total mastery of ICT (Information, Communications, and Technology) literacy. I know that my students are going to come into the classroom already being somewhat technology savvy. My goal as an educator will be to help my students learn how to use technology as a learning and communicative tool. I want students to understand the endless possiblities that exist with technology, and to be able to be effective users and producers of media, avid researchers, and effective communicators. I also want to instill an attitude of flexibility and adaptability to change, and to help my students become critical users of information technologies. In order to help my students become efficient technology users, I need to learn as much as I can about the available tools and options that technology offers for learning and teaching. This class is a start!

  2. 1. I feel that right now I have a good foundation to be a 21st century educator. Overall, my strengths outweighed my challenges so I figure that is a good start. Being born into the technology generation has definitely given me an advantage as to acquring and using many of the technological skills that I need to become a successful 21st century educator. I also think that it is extremely beneficial to be able to have such available technologies. If there are any areas I feel I need improvement upon, I feel there is always some kind of tutorial or FAQ that is only one mouse click away.

    2. One skill I would like to improve upon is the idea of changing priorities and being more flexible. My last year teaching, there was a unit that was basically thrust upon me in the month of February that I was required to teach. I had other activities planned out and this new unit totally messed up my schedule for what I had wanted to accomplish. I eventually gave in, but I was frustrated throughout the duration of the unit that it was not something I wanted to be teaching. Looking back on that, I realize that unfortunately with today's climate in schools, this will not be a one-time incident and that I need to be flexible in my teaching. Even though I might not agree with certain expectations placed upon me, I need to do my best to ensure that the students are getting the most beneficial educational experience I can give them. It is this idea of flexibility that I can improve upon which will help me become a better 21st century educator.

  3. 1. As it stands now, I think that I am well on my way to being a good 21st Century educator. I agree with Trevor that being born into a generation in which we grew up with budding technology and the confidence to learn new technology and use it helps us to adapt to the growing changes that the 21st Century bring about. The largest challenge for me is remembering to incorporate these aspects and skills into the classroom, it's too easy for me to get hung up on core content and forget about life skills and information, media, and technology literacy.

    2. I think that the one skill I can still hope to improve on is my skills with communication and collaboration. Poor collaborative learning models growing up, in which I was most often forced to take on the work of the whole group because their was no structure of accountability, have turned me off to collaboration and group work in my learning and my teaching. I believe that implementing cooperative learning projects that don't have accountability pitfalls will go a long way in opening me up to collaborative efforts in the future. Hopefully soon I will be a good model of communication and collaboration skills for my students.

  4. 1. Reflecting on my teacher preparation and outlooks on the goals and objectives that education should aim to meet, I feel that I have a good foundation to become an effective 21st century educator. Reading through the different strands on the Partnership for 21st Century Skills and Route 21 website, I feel that I have absorbed a number of those priorities in education and emphasize them in the ways that I plan & implement lessons, the technology I incorporate into my teaching, and the ways that I assess students. I will begin teaching next fall and can assume that through my first few years of teaching, I will have successes - and failures! - that help me refine my view of what it means to be a 21st century educator and to teach in a way that values the skills that students need to develop to be successful, vibrant, and aware members of tomorrow's society.

    2. Picking just one skill that I wish I possessed greater knowledge or sheer mastery of was difficult to do, because I feel that I could benefit from more knowledge of and practice in using many of these skills. However, if I had to choose just one it would have to be "Global Awareness: Using 21st century skills to understand and address global issues." With respect to high school math education, I feel that a lot of the ways in which problems are taught do not allow students to make meaning or connect the material to their lives. Instead of teaching proportions by talking about baking cookies, what about looking at the number of people in the world who live on less than $1 per day? Instead of polling the class and making a graph on what kind of candy bar everyone likes, why not look at how graphs are represented in the media and are constructed to prove a point, or sway people's thinking? These ideas are some that have been in my head recently. Knowing different ways to implement them in the math classroom and knowing which (if any) do work to promote student engagement in discussion about globally just societies would be instrumental in how I go about planning my first few years of teaching - and would dramatically reduce the number of mistakes and blunders that I am sure I will make!

  5. 1. I think I am pretty enough to be a 21st century educator. Even though I was not born in a technology generation as my students are, I have quite knowledge how to use and manage the technology in my teaching field. This is because working with the youth impelled me to acquire this knowledge in a school setting. The necessity makes the invention, I can say. The important thins is adaptability to change. The technology has changes so fast. For example, when I studied TESOL in Korea in 1999, one of my courses was how to use internet in English teaching such as using email, chat, web magazine etc. Those are pretty simple, right? That was only 10 years ago. But, as we can see in our classroom, computer based teaching is basic of the basics these days. The most important thing for teachers in 21st century is to have adaptability from unknown information especially technology information. That also we have to teach to our students to have this literacy as a 21st century skill.
    2. One skill I wish to possess as a 21st century educator is critical thinking and problem solving, especially analyze and synthesize is what I want to improve in my teaching career as well as administrative part in school. I want to solve the problem with different angles with many different perspectives, however I feel I am well used to my own conventional way of thinking. People say that I am creative in some way, but I know sometimes get lost the track because I had too many different ideas. Yet, too many thought does not mean critical thinking so that it leads to problem solving. I need to analyze and synthesize the issues with real creative way of approach. To be a 21st educator means in this sense, to know possible different solutions through many different kinds of approach with multiple layers of literacy such as information literacy, media and technology skill. I think this kind of course also broaded my horizon to a new world by using different source of literacies.

  6. What an interesting way to look at myself as an educator! I am so used to being evaluated on such different criteria; this was very eye opening. Like many other posts have stated, I feel my education and experiences in the classroom have given me a strong foundation from which I can grow into a 21st century educator. I found many of the skills to be strengths simply because of my personality or experiences, which made me feel confident; however, I also realized several areas for growth. I believe as true educators we are never done learning and will always have challenges, especially as the world around us changes and new skills are needed to succeed in society.

    As an elementary school teacher, I wish I possessed greater mastery in creativity and innovation. I wish I were more creative and innovative as a person and educator. I am very structured, detailed and goal-oriented as a teacher, and I feel this sometimes stifles creativity or hinders innovation in my students. I would hate for my students to not have opportunities to express themselves creatively or develop as innovators simply because this is an area of growth for me. Additionally, I would like to incorporate 21st Century Themes (global awareness, financial, economic, business and entrepreneurial literacy, civic literacy, and health literacy) in my teaching. As a kindergarten teacher, I feel the only theme I truly incorporate is health literacy. Obviously I cannot integrate these themes in the same way a teacher of older children could, but I do not think kindergarten students are too young to learn about our world and other nations, finances, and civic duties. I especially feel financial literacy is an area in which our schools are failing students. Kindergarten is a perfect age to lay the foundation for what I believe are the most important themes: global awareness, and financial, civic, and health literacy.

  7. 1. Although I feel pretty competent about myself in terms of a 21st century educator, as soon as I am exposed to the reality, this competence of mine is diminished in the light of some new qualities which are required by different classroom situations. Diversity of students constantly asks me to be more effective to handle challenges due to the cultural differences. Therefore, lifelong learning is the only way for me to be prepared to face the fast changing faces of education. Furthermore, understanding the individual students should have the focal point among any set of skills. In the end, 21st century skills are the resource for me to help the students to grow as much as they can.

    2. There are many skills which I wish I possess the great knowledge;however, critical thinking and problem solving skills are not easy to improve. As far as I understand these skills are the essential basis for creativity and innovation skills which are the most important goals of education. Only if I possess sheer mastery of these skills, I can be effective to help the students to be creative incoporating whatever they have learned with what they are going to learn. They can catch fish as many as they want only after they learn how to catch a fish.

  8. 1.) As mostly everyone else has stated, I also feel that I have a strong foundation to be a 21st Century Educator. I too grew up in this era of great technological advances. I feel that I have experienced using some new technologies in the classroom as a student such as Smart Boards, and interactive websites. Using these as a student has only strenghten my confidence in utilizing them in the classroom as a teacher. I also feel that I possesed many of the skill sets the website highlighted. I do feel that I could definetly use some help in mastering some of the skill sets, but overall, I have a strong foundation to grow from.

    2.) The one skill that I feel I defiently need more help with is Health Literacy. Actually, I don't really understand what this entails. Am I suppose to be teaching my students what basic health services they are entitled to? Am I suppose to know what services are avaliable? Where would I find out such information? I don't even know how I would monitor family health goals, and I feel awkward thinking that it is my responsibility to monitor such goals. I think that this is the skill set I need the most help with because clearly I don't know what exactly is expected of me.

  9. 1. After reading the information on the website, I would have to say that I am confident in my abilities as a 21st century educator. Most of the attributes of a 21st century educator can be considered my strengths, and I think that I gained these skills because of my exposure to international news and events as a child and through my studies as an undergraduate student. Many of these skills were taught and reinforced as part of my major at Arizona State University, but others, like the core subjects and 21st century themes were mostly learned through my experiences at school when I was younger and from my own interest in learning about the world. Most of my challenges had to do with time management and multitasking, which is something I’m very bad at and I have to work hard to improve.

    2.The one skill that I wish I possessed is communicating clearly, which is under the communication and collaboration in learning and innovation skills. I have a really hard time trying to communicate what I’m thinking to others. I’m better at communicating through writing than I am at communicating orally. For some reason, I can’t find the right words to convey what is in my mind. I think it has to do with my anxiety over speaking publicly. As a teacher, it is very important that you know how to communicate effectively in order to teach your students, so this is something that I really need to work on.

  10. 1. Right now, adequately prepared. I think these skills are monumentally important but I myself (along with many others in the class I'm sure) learned only fraction of them in school and the others I've acquired through "real life". Just growing up in this era has increased my understanding of many of the ideas the Partnership espouses. While I may understand these ideas and value their importance, I think I would need to learn the most effective ways of incorporating them into the lessons.

    2. Many of them. Because I teach adults from all over the world, mastery in global awareness would be perfect, not only for my own sensitivity and knowledge, but also for the opportunity to effectively impart this on the students and have them pass it on. I think also a solid understanding of how to instill critical thinking and problem solving skills, as well as creativity and innovation, because these transcend all subjects. In this era, informational and media literacy are also critical of course.

  11. 1.) I feel that I am in the process of being prepared to be an effective 21st century educator. As previously stated by my peers, I consider myself a life long learner and a work in progress. The process of learning is never over. Throughout my life as a student I have been able to gain the skills needed to be an effective 21st century learner. However, I have been able to improve these sets of skills through real life application. Once I enter the field of teaching in the classroom again, I will definitely come in better prepared and eager to improve myself as an educator.

    (2) When assessing my strengths and weaknesses for this weeks assignment, there are several skills that I wish I could improve upon. One skill in particular that I feel I need to improve upon the most is my ability to collaborate with others. I do not necessarily have a difficult time working with others but I prefer to work alone. In my opinion, it is impossible to work alone in any capacity. How else are you going to learn? I would also like to improve in the area of ICT literacy.

  12. 1,Be honest, my dear teacher,those abilities can really make me become omnipotent in 21st. I won't be only a educator,but also can get chance to be a president once I have these abilities.
    I have been already prepared to study how to be an educator in 21st. learning is a lifelong process, after we fish school, we enter in the society. The real edcation just begin. I want add something for the 21st learners, how can we learn our lessons from our past, and create more chances to the future. I know it sounds abstract, but it is really work for 21st,we are so afraid of failure and loose, but how many people cherish what they already had and use it efficiently.
    That is only one ability I have,yet not from the article. I hope that I can share this point with other people.
    2,I really want to learn that how to handle the stress and presure, because I think the spirit control the mental health and work ability. I'd been studied that for a while, but I have figured it out completely

  13. 1. It was very interesting to reflect on my strengths and weaknesses based on this criteria. I do feel that I am confident in my abilities to be a 21st century teacher; however, I also realize that I have many areas in which I can improve! I agree that I have learned and developed many of these skills through life experiences, rather than explicitly taught in school. It is eye-opening to realize how much more there is to teach, in addition to just the core subjects.

    2. I wish to improve in area C: Information, Media & Technology Skills. I need to become stronger in these areas, in order to provide my students with a better education. The other area that I would like to become more aware and involved with is some of the 21st century themes such as: global awareness, financial, economic, business & entrepreneurial literacy.

  14. 1. In classroom practice, I would say that I am fairly well prepared to be a 21st Century educator. Recently graduating from a respected education program and having a few years of experience in the field has combined to lend me a decent amount of knowledge on the modern classroom dynamics. Sometimes it seems as though being a 21st Century educator is very overwhelming. For example, there are so many new technologies and methods and expectations thrown into our curriculum each year, and rarely is anything old removed. However, the fact that we have to apply real-world issues into curriculum can lead to really great learning experiences as long as we can combine them with traditional standards. It is teaching in a different way than the practices with which we were instructed. No longer are the text book readings and practice problems enough. Now we must learn how to strategically plan civic issues, internationalism, creativity, and problem solving skills into standards shaped for traditional education. All in all, it all seems like too much to possibly teach in thirteen years, but at least we are headed in the right direction.
    2. I wish I possessed greater knowledge in the technology field, specifically media. Our school has the ability to streamline video to all rooms, and there is even a designated “news room” for a journalism class to use, but I don’t have the ability or knowledge to use the technology. In my high school, journalism was a huge subject, and it was something that inspired my own career path, so I would love to be able to provide the same opportunities to my students. Also, I hope to someday be able to master the art of leadership. I know that is something that comes with experience, but even now I could use those skills in my classroom.

  15. After reading the website, I think that I am pretty prepared to be a 21st century educator. Having just received my credential a little over a year ago, I feel like I have the “latest” information and teaching “skills” to help me be an effective teacher. While reading the framework, I felt confident in almost all of the key elements for success. I feel as though USD especially prepared me in the core subjects and learning and thinking skills. I am also lucky to be surrounded by motivated and effective teachers who help me learn and grow as an educator. Because I am so new to this profession though, I know that there is so much more for me to discover and experience to become an even more effective teacher in the 21st century.

    I wish that I possessed greater knowledge on ITC literacy. I have a basic understanding of technology in the classroom (document cameras, power point, educational websites…) but I know there is so much more to learn. I know my students would benefit from opportunities to use and learn from technology in the classroom.