Celebration of Learning. At first glance, it looks like a typical open house. Twinkling lights hang outside classrooms. Student art is displayed on tables. Slide presentations roll through various photos of students showing off their work. Parents are mingling, anticipating the pride that will soon fill them up when the see their student stand in front of them to present what they have learned. Everything screams “Celebration!”
But wait. Stop in front of a student’s project display or pop in during a student’s presentation and you’ll witness something – actually experience something – quite different.
Whether you are in a kindergarten classroom or a twelfth grade literacy room, you’ll see and hear students talking not only about what they learned but the process in which they learned it. They’re having conversations with their adults and other students. They’re talking about how they collected their data, why the work they presented was relevant to their learning, and how they learned about their topic. Stay a bit longer and you’ll hear students reflect on their learning by telling you what went well, what they could have been better and what they learned about themselves as a learner.
“I learned that if I give myself enough time for research, I can present a project that I feel proud about.” “I learned that if I care enough about my topic, I will work harder.”
Celebration of Learning in the Personalized Mastery Learning classroom is so much more than showing off student work. It’s a deeper example of students’ learning process and the self reflection that helps them become confident, life-long learners.