Jill Hobson’s 4 Education Pillars
Jill Hobson, Education Strategist sees 4 education pillars as having education importance for school leaders, educators, and students, today. Hobson believes that while you can talk about them all separately, they are each a part of the bigger picture for positive change in education.
Jill Hobson’s Four Pillars interview with Connect Learning Today—In her own words:
Student Engagement is critical, and without it, learning doesn’t happen. Students need to be volunteers to learning. Learning has to be designed to draw students in, and when you do, they will want to learn. Today students may have one, or more devices with them, at all times. These devices have become a part of their lives, just as they are a part of our lives wherever we are. As an adult these devices are part of our work, and for students, that work is schoolwork, and use of student devices applies there as well. Students, today, should be put in situations, where they can use these digital devices. If we don’t, we are automatically setting up students to disengage. ClassFlow is a perfect place to use those digital tools for learning. It allows an educator to dynamically flow content back and forth—between student and teacher.
I have a more heightened awareness of how important collaboration is, as well as the role it plays, especially for the learning of workplace skills. In the real world, nearly everything you do is collaborative—and you rarely work alone. We need to create more opportunities in education for students to work together interdependently. Having students in groups doing individualized work, while sitting next to each other isn’t collaboration. Students need opportunities to work together to problem solve, find answers to questions, and become united and committed to those solutions. The beauty of collaboration using ClassFlow is that it can be a part of student learning, even without each student having his/her individual learning device. Groups working together, using one device per group works well. There’s a great opportunity, here, for collaboration between students and teachers, too—with polling, responses, and through all the newest and latest features being added to ClassFlow all the time—including assignment and commenting. There’s a great opportunity to build collaboration.
Differentiation and Personalization are not synonymous. Differentiation is about providing content for a process or product in a way that meets a child’s education learning needs. Personalization is more than that. Personalization is tapping into students’ interests and passions, their excitement and creativity, and allowing them to express those in their learning. It’s a way of keeping students engaged. Personalization, collaboration, and engagement aren’t things that stand-alone—they are intertwined. With ClassFlow’s newest features, we’re heading towards creating more avenues for students to show what they know, but do it in ways, where they can incorporate their personal interests, and creativity in the way they respond. Students need to investigate and explore interests, and find ways to connect them. Students disengage from school when they don’t find it relevant or meaningful. We need to provide the platform and opportunities for students to maintain interest and stay engaged. That’s where technology can be a powerful tool for a teacher, and regardless of class size. It will help educators scale differentiation and personalization.
Feedback is a critical piece for improvement in the teacher and student learning process. Students and educators need feedback. If all I do, as a teacher, is test to see if students have mastered, or haven’t mastered—it’s not enough. If there’s assessment, but no feedback until after the class is over, or later—and teachers and students don’t see that—that’s precious time that we can’t get back. Feedback needs to be a part of the learning process, and in the moment. It makes the instructional process more powerful. It also helps a teacher reflect to work on his/her best practices for improvement. In ClassFlow, a teacher can create and deliver a lesson, see what students are doing, how long it takes to answer questions, see how many attempts students have taken to discover the correct answers, and much more. That’s powerful data. Short, quick, informative polls are possible, too. Feedback that may have not been scheduled ahead of time, but offers so much more understanding, and comes directly from the lesson flow between students and educator is invaluable. It can create a whole different course correction for the teaching and learning process.
~Interview by Ken Royal