Framework for Teaching & Learning
- Principle #1: Active Learning Community
- Principle #2: Challenging Expectations
- Principle #3: Meaningful Knowledge
- Principle #4: Purposeful Engagement
- Principle #5: Individual Responsibility
Principle #1: Active Learning Community
Students learn best when they have a sense of belonging to a positive learning community in which they have regular opportunities to work collaboratively.
- Organize the classroom environment with flexible opportunities for individual and group learning and resources to support a self-managed classroom.
- Develop and revisit classroom norms in partnership with students to ensure inclusive and respectful interactions.
- Use effective restorative conflict resolution practices to re-establish feelings of intellectual safety when needed.
- Provide direct instruction and guided practice in the skills and dispositions of effective collaboration.
- Affirm identity development over time and offer opportunities for learners to reflect on and express their various evolving identities.
- Facilitate student to student discourse leading to the social construction of knowledge.
- Model disciplined thinking and encourage questions, debate, dialogue and discussion as the hallmarks of academic discourse.
- Structure opportunities for students to share work publicly and promote learning through engagement with others as mentors and critics.
- Use classroom resources and space to develop independence in the learning process.
- Uphold and exhibit classroom norms for respectful behavior and productive collaboration.
- Participate in conflict resolution processes with a willingness to understand other perspectives.
- Support the expression of various identities in the school community.
- Express ideas and opinions clearly while also actively seeking to understand and appreciate multiple points of view.
- Share work publicly and exchange meaningful feedback to improve process and product.
Principle #2: Challenging Expectations
Students learn best when they understand performance expectations and are individually supported in meeting challenging standards.
- Use learning targets to describe content standards and learner expectations achievable by all with flexible pacing and targeted support.
- Build learners’ understanding of success using rubrics, examples and models of student work.
- Offer multiple and varied ways of demonstrating mastery and timely formative feedback that supports student progress.
- Sequence content and manage the amount of new information in order to attend to cognitive load.
- Anticipate or uncover misconceptions to design differentiated, responsive instruction.
- Pose intriguing questions, problems and tasks that engage all students in productive struggle.
- Design learning experiences with a strengths-based approach, avoiding deficit thinking.
- Engage students in practice, rehearsal and critique protocols to refine knowledge and skills.
- Ask questions to clarify expectations, learning targets and available resources.
- Describe the attributes of success and reflect on their own related strengths.
- Use models, rubrics, and feedback to evaluate and improve their own work.
- Build effective personalized habits of work and study.
- Persist in the face of challenges, seeking teacher and/or peer support as needed.
- Develop stamina, focus, and confidence as a result of overcoming challenges.
Principle #3: Meaningful Knowledge
Students learn best when they see content as meaningful and organized around big ideas and questions and can transfer learning to new contexts.
- Learn about students’ family and cultural backgrounds to maximize opportunities to amplify connectedness to the curriculum.
- Link new learning to students’ prior knowledge and life experiences.
- Develop tasks that require students to synthesize, transfer and apply knowledge and skills to new situations.
- Make purposeful connections to broad concepts, themes, and cross-curricular ideas and skills.
- Engage students in applying new knowledge and skills to authentic situations that have an impact on others.
- Design learning experiences that position students as producers not just consumers of information.
- Be curious about new learning and find connections to life experiences and background knowledge.
- Organize and synthesize new information into broad themes, topics and concepts with cross curricular meaning.
- Share personally relevant experiences when studying new ideas and concepts.
- Demonstrate understanding of big ideas and concepts by applying them to new or novel situations or problems.
- Actively participate in producing meaningful products, performances, or presentations that have an impact on others.
- Recognize and acknowledge that meaning is different for everyone and seek to understand the value of new learning for others.
Principle #4: Purposeful Engagement
Students learn best when they are actively engaged in authentic learning tasks and given opportunities to construct meaning and develop understanding.
- Activate curiosity through the design of learning experiences that appeal to learners’ emotions like wonder, surprise, or purposeful uncertainty.
- Structure lessons with an inquiry-orientation and to promote learner agency and self-direction.
- Use media and technology tools to enhance relevance, research, and real world impact.
- Make thinking public and engage students in examining each other’s ways of knowing.
- Give students contributing roles to build individual strengths and talents.
- Situate new learning in a local or global context to highlight relevance.
- Respond to differences by enabling learners to engage with, make sense of, and demonstrate understanding in different ways.
- Remain open and interested in new ideas and learning experiences.
- Take initiative to bring innovative ideas and new resources into the learning community.
- Actively explore interests, questions, and intriguing problems.
- Use technology skilfully and responsibly as a tool for learning and exhibiting work.
- Hold themselves to a high standard of excellence that keeps them focused.
- Explain the local or global context for learning.
- Embrace partnership and leadership roles in class with self-awareness and adaptability.
Principle #5: Individual Responsibility
Students learn best when they make choices about and take responsibility for their own learning goals and progress.
- Give students opportunities to make choices about content, process, and/or product.
- Enact student-led classroom routines to encourage independence and resourcefulness.
- Introduce students to diverse role models who have overcome challenges and negative stereotype threats.
- Help students understand that mistakes, failures, and self-doubt are temporary and a normal part of the learning process.
- Develop the habit of reflection - monitoring one’s own thinking and setting goals for improvement.
- Explicitly teach strategies for recognizing and regulating emotional states that impede learning.
- Model and discuss healthy ways to balance academic expectations, personal interests and family life.
- Know themselves as learners and make good choices about what, when, and how they want to learn.
- Take ownership for effective work habits and strategies that lead to productive outcomes.
- Seek role models and trusted adults who inspire confidence and model resilience.
- Persist through challenges and feelings of self-doubt.
- Learn to use metacognitive strategies to monitor thinking.
- Self-assess and reflect on achievement in order to set ambitious but attainable goals.
- Manage and regulate emotions in order to be ready to learn.