Several contributors offer concrete approaches to deeper learning based in dialogue. Mary Hendra encourages students to take a stand in a “human barometer” activity; Tara Della Roca coaches students to achieve a balanced perspective in reflecting on their own work; Liza Eaton and Cyndi Gueswel integrate student agency with academics by fostering relational skills and habits of scholarship. Beth DeLuca offers her students a variety of ways to share their reflections on literature; Cara Littlefield consults with her students about how she might best give directions; Jessica Ross and her students go deeper into humanities content by looking closely at art. Meanwhile, Tim McNamara urges educators to step outside school and take advantage of the resources and personal assistance offered by the online learning community.
In our UnBoxed interview, Tony Wagner, who delivered the keynote address at Deeper Learning 2013, describes a “going deep” moment in his own learning. He goes on to argue that schools must change if they are to become places of deeper learning, and calls for educators and other stakeholders to join in a national conversation about purpose and accountability. Wagner, Sarah Strong, Eduardo Briceño, and Karen Fasimpaur all point out that deeper learning in schools starts with the adults, and offer practical suggestions for how to begin. In the end, deeper learning is not about what we know, but rather about how we engage with what we don’t know. It is a matter, not of prescription and predictability, but of reflection, dialogue, and the willingness to venture together into uncharted territory.
UnBoxed readers may use their smartphones to link to related content while reading. To get started, simply download a free QR reader on your phone. Then, wherever you see a “tag” or icon, open the application and scan it with your phone’s camera. A website, video, or document will appear, offering further information and context.
The UnBoxed cards in this issue offer glimpses of projects and practices that we find inspiring. These cards are freely available on our UnBoxed website in a printer-ready format. Simply print, fold, share and discuss. Each card refers the reader to a web address for further information.
We wish to thank the K-12 and university educators who have reviewed our submissions for this issue and offered invaluable counsel. We invite all of our readers to join us in conversations about purpose, policy and practice in education by submitting your thoughts for publication or serving as a peer reviewer.