Today’s students are wired differently

Today’s students are “wired differently” from previous generations. We must understand what this means for our classrooms if we want all students to have the necessary skills and knowledge needed to succeed in this changing world. This challenge has become the focus of my work.

Hard drives are cheap! No business I know of is hiring anyone to memorize and store information in their brain. Yet that remains the dominant learning activity in our schools. The Common Core is a conscious strategy designed to change the instructional delivery in our classrooms by focusing on teaching critical thinking, problem-solving, collaborative learning, and improving technological literacy.

Just a few years ago, the thought of using a mobile phone or PDA as a teaching tool in schools seemed radical. In most schools students are still prohibited from using phones/devices in classrooms, or required to have them off during school hours. The schools of the future will be very different. One day, you will hear teachers say, “Class, turn on your phones or devices. It’s time to work.”

About Jim Warford

Jim Warford is the author of, The Chemistry of Culture: Strategies You Can Use to Create a Culture of Learning. For 15 years Jim Warford was Senior Advisor and Keynote Speaker for the International Center for Leadership in Education. Jim is an author, speaker, Leadership and Instructional Coach. He was named in March 2003 as Florida’s first Chancellor of K12 Public Schools. He stepped down in September, 2005 to become Executive Director of the Florida Association of School Administrators, representing over 10,000 Florida school leaders. As a Senior Advisor for the International Center for Leadership in Education, he works with states, districts and schools to provide coaching and executive training and support to school leaders and their staffs. As Florida’s Chancellor, he led the creation and state-wide implementation of Florida’s Continuous Improvement Model, FCIM, which resulted in that state’s dramatic gains in student achievement and an 80% reduction in the number low-performing schools. FCIM remains Florida’s required intervention for all low-performing schools. As Superintendent of the Marion County, Florida Public Schools, he first implemented the Continuous Improvement Model district-wide. As a result, school grades went from three “F”, eight “D” and only one “A” school in 1999 to twenty “A”, 16 “B” and no “F” schools in 2003. Under his leadership the high school dropout rate was cut in half. He taught applied technology courses at the high school level for 17 years and created a Computer Graphics/Video Production program that won many national and state awards. He was named Vanguard High School Teacher of the Year three separate times.
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