The last thing anyone wants is confusion.
This summer we changed G21 a bit. I am hoping teachers who might be confused by the changes can read through this and it will all be more clear.
There are now three “levels” of G21.
- School G21: this is a unifying theme for projects at your school. It’s a general umbrella theme so that everyone is thinking about one particular area. This will presumably change each school year. Schools will also pledge to do something around this theme, which could be a guest speaker, several class projects that collaborate together, an assembly or event, or even a fund raiser. While students and teachers both will be invited to participate, participation in this theme-related event is up to the school administration.
- Classroom G21: This is what we’ve done in the past. A project is identified for students and all students in a given class participate. Examples of projects might be: a video, a podcast, a paper, a musical composition, a dance performance, a game, a blog, etc. Projects should give students opportunities to practice 21st century skills with 21st century tools. These “classic” style projects must be completed in the first semester.
- Student G21: Teachers can elect to give students more voice into the product. In this example, the product is chosen/designed by the student. Instead of specific learning objectives, students are challenged to work on a problem/issue and the product may be part of the solution. Most projects would involve research. These “individual” projects can also be done in teams of students who share similar interests. It’s conceivable that a classroom may have 5 of these projects if students are working in groups. This level is optional, and replaces the “classroom” G21 for folks who take up this option. These projects must be completed by the end of the 3rd nine-weeks.
For some teachers, they may in the past not have done a project with all of their students (say, at the secondary level). We want all kids to experience the opportunity to work on a G21 project. The same project does not need to be used across different subjects. Projects can also be done in conjunction with other teachers.
The big difference this year is the school-based theme and matching projects to the theme. During the planning sessions, we can discuss how much or little your project needs to align to your school’s theme. For folks with project ideas planned this summer, our expectation is that only minor adjustments would need to be made to align most projects to a school’s wide-arching theme.
If you have further questions, let me or your building administrator know! If your question is of concern to more teachers, you can also leave me a comment below.