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Boost your students' 21st century skills

How do we measure students' inquiry, problem-solving, and critical thinking abilities so that we know they are prepared to meet the challenges of the 21st century? John Barell explains how inquiry leads to problem-solving and provides specific steps for pre, formative and summative assessment that informs instruction of 21st century skills. Included are examples that show how to use today's technology in the classroom and how to use inquiry to develop and assess students' ability to:

Think critically and creatively; Collaborate with others; Become self-directed learners; Adapt and become resourceful; Develop a sense of leadership, responsibility, and global awareness

The authors challenge teachers to reflect on their own learning, thinking, and problem-solving processes as well as those of their students. The text ...

“STEM Changed My Life!”
“STEM changed my life!”

Karla is an eighth grader at Perkins Middle School in Sandusky, Ohio. The science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) project I describe below is one that changed her life. She transformed herself from a person who accepted what others told her to do to someone who took much greater control of her own life.

STEM projects are problem-based experiences that focus on developing students' abilities in science, technology, engineering, and math. Many schools across the country have adopted such innovative approaches, some in an effort to qualify for Race to the Top federal funding. These projects seek to enhance students' interests and capabilities in subjects in which our citizens have not performed as well as students in other countries.

But ...

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