I have thought a lot about the idea of authentic products. I have a strong belief that when students get the opportunities, an audience can push students to create stronger products. As well, since most of our students will function in large measure in a digital environment, having them create digital products is critical for preparing them for the future. Students can create some incredibly impressive digital products, which can be highly motivating.
Every week, it seems there are new ways for students to collect information, share information, collaborate with others, present, synthesize.
We have a depressing number of students with little or inconsistent access to the digital world. We need to forgo a few intersections and passing lanes in this province and make sure students can access, create, connect, collaborate, and publish in the digital world. Infrastructure, training, portable labs, software.
Of course, there are plenty of ways students can ‘publish’ in a non-digital formats. To name a few:
- Letters to leaders/newspapers on topics of concern
- Posters, leaflets, pamphlets distributed into the community
- Coffee houses for poetry reading
- Presentations to local boards, councils
- Student news letters
- In-school displays
However, there are still a variety of reasons students hand work in to me. Not everything can be or needs to be published. Provincially examined courses are different from other courses. Each group of students requires different types of accountability. It’s a complex picture.