Learning is active, engaging, and social. Students need to be engaged and motivated in their learning before they can apply higher order, creative thinking skills. They are most engaged when they themselves are part of constructing meaning, not when teachers do it for them. By encouraging students to meet challenges creatively, collaborate, and apply critical thinking skills to real-world, unpredictable situations inside and outside of school, we prepare them for future college, career, and citizenship success.
Effective classroom instruction that embraces both high standards and accountability for students' learning can be project-based, focused on service and the community, experiential, cooperative, expeditionary ... the list goes on. These engaging learning strategies are grounded in instructional objectives, provide clear feedback, and enable students to thrive cognitively, socially, emotionally, and civically.