Hacktivation Nation Conference: Scaling Deeper Learning Practices School Wide

July 21, 2017

Scaling Deeper Learning Practices School Wide


Jose Garcia, NTN School Development Coach
Sunday, July 30


Have you or your colleagues received training in Deeper Learning practices, then been challenged to implement, sustain or scale at your school? This is a common experience that many schools go through as they begin to implement hacks in support of their ideal student outcomes, school mission, and vision. New Tech Network has 15 years of success working with teams of teachers to bring about school-wide deeper learning practices with project based learning as the primary instructional practice.  In this session, we will build an understanding in what works and doesn’t work in scaling practices; you will leave with a diagnosis of your school as a system, and a plan for successfully maintaining Deeper Learning practice, aligned with NTNs crucial criteria for school transformation.

Project-based learning (PBL) is at the heart of our instructional approach.

In PBL, learning is contextual, creative, and shared.  Students collaborate on meaningful projects that require critical thinking, creativity, and communication in order for them to answer challenging questions or solve complex problems. By making learning relevant to them in this way, students see a purpose for mastering state-required skills and content concepts.

Students aren’t just assessed on their understanding of academic content, but on their ability to successfully apply that content when solving authentic problems.  Through this process, project based learning gives students the opportunity to develop the real life skills required for success in today’s world.

New Tech Network schools also use Problem-based learning. PrBL is a form of inquiry-based instruction used primarily in Mathematics that places the students in several smaller Problem scenarios rather than a single, large Project scenario. Supported by NCTM and the NSF, much of what makes PBL so successful is present in a PrBL environment, including Entry Events, the Need-to-Know (NTK) process, and student-centered scaffolding.