Along with a review of the existing literature, Steelcase Education researchers conducted a qualitative research study involving schools, educators and students from across the U.S. and Europe to recommend the following strategies for educators, schools and districts seeking to implement more personalized learning experiences for their students. Researchers visited thirteen schools and conducted 44 interviews.
Create a vision that considers both short-term and long-term goals. Explore how a personalized learning approach will require shifting roles and responsibilities for students, parents, educators and administrators.
Collaborate with teachers, students and parents to build ownership and create transparency.
Consider all parts of the educational system and how they relate to one another. Shifting an existing system is complex, so it’s important to think through the various moving parts and how they will affect each other. What’s right for one district may not work for another.
Start Small and Iterate
Take small steps to begin. The size of the step will vary depending on the school and people involved. Allow room for everyone to step past their comfort zone, yet at a pace that will not create too much stress.
Encourage a growth mindset, as it’s about trying new approaches, learning from them and iterating as needed. Adults are learners, too. We all need reminders that it’s okay to learn from mistakes.
Think Global, Act Local
Connect with the wider world, as a school is not an isolated community. Students will be working in an interconnected, global society and schools should reflect the world around them.
Consider unique context and culture, as there is no one-size-fits-all. What works for one school may not be the best solution for another. Schools can learn from one another yet must discover what personalized learning experiences mean for their own community, school, students, teachers and culture.
NEXT CHAPTER – Eight Strategies to Implement Personalized Learning Experiences
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