Ensure a Broad Set of Learning Opportunities for All Students - Overview
A broad set of learning opportunities must be provided to all students if they are to learn about the inter-connections among their lives, their planet and their futures. Teaching and learning should not be compartmentalized into or prioritized as a limited set of specialized disciplines and selected core subjects and confined to classroom-based teaching & learning. A broad set of learning opportunities is provided by requiring :
A broad set of learning opportunities must be provided to all students if they are to learn about the inter-connections among their lives, their planet and their futures. Teaching and learning should not be reduced to a narrow set of core subjects or confined to classroom-based teaching & learning. A broad set of learning opportunities is provided by requiring :
A broad set of learning opportunities also requires the extensive and more purposeful use of "extended education" strategies, programs and activities which occur outside of the classroom. This less formal but nevertheless organized learning occurs through extra-curricular and co-curricular activities, school routines, rituals and events, on-line projects, social media campaigns, use of community radio and local media outlets, family-based education programs, student peer and student leadership programs, mentoring programs, community faith-based, health or social/civil or youth organizations and others.
Various theories and models of learning styles, multiple forms of intelligence, differentiated instruction and brain-based learning linked to different stages and types of cognitive development have been defined and discussed by psychologists and others for years. Leading education organizations promote such models that help teachers to use different teaching, learning, student engagement, assessment and supervision/classroom management strategies and methods to meet the needs and respond to the interests of their students. However, ministries and faculties of education will need to provide more support and guidance as well as more professional autonomy to enable teachers to overcome the many barriers to individualizing and diversifying their practices.
Education International, representing the world’s teachers and the Brookings Institution have published a report (Anderson et al, 2018) as well as national and school-level planning tools to promote this much needed breadth of learning opportunities. Their technical paper begins by noting that the UN 2030 goal #4 (education) has made a commitment to offering a wide breadth of learning opportunities. UNESCO is now working to monitor the breadth of learning opportunities as part of its work monitoring achievement of Target 4.7 learning objectives for students. OECD has included the concept in its Education 2030 – Learning Compass initiative (OECD, 2019). UNICEF (2019) has joined other organizations in calling for a broad base of transferable skills and knowledge because of the uncertain futures that students will face.
Education International, representing the world’s teachers and the Brookings Institution have published a report (Anderson et al, 2018) as well as national and school-level planning tools to promote this much needed breadth of learning opportunities. Their technical paper begins by noting that the UN 2030 goal #4 (education) has made a commitment to high-quality education for every child and young person by offering a wide breadth of learning opportunities.
This need for a wide breadth of learning opportunities is now recognized by two leading global education agencies, OECD and UNESCO. However, we should be careful to ensure that both the breadth of opportunities is sufficient and that the opportunities are provided to all students. The breadth been recognized by the OECD Education 2030 – Learning Compass initiative (OECD, 2019) when it "recognises the intrinsic value of learning by elaborating a wide range and types of learning within a broad structure, and acknowledges that learning does not only happen in school." However, the OECD Learning Compass is less clear about ensuring that all students benefit. The emphasis is on "student agency", enabling "individual learners" to use the compass to find their way towards a "collective well-being".
This breadth of leaning opportunities was also recognized as a starting point in the development of Target 4.7 of the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (Learning Metrics Task Force, 2013). This task force defined seven "learning domains" to depict this necessary range of learning opportunities. This is a good starting point in defining the necessary breadth. However, there are are other domains that need to be considered since they already form part of the crowded landscape in schools. The additional domains include character/moral/religious development, financial literacy, exploration of careers & vocations, social studies and ancestral/second languages.
The FRESH Working Group on Health Literacy, Life Skills & Social Inclusion has added these domains in a diagram to show a wider range of learning opportunities that is often reflected in the core subjects offered by most countries. As well, the FRESH Framework and Partners have elaborated on the learning that occurs outside of the classroom. This learning occurs in less formal and extended education programs such as , extra-curricular and co-curricular activities, school routines, in the community and online. Please click on web link to the FRESH info-graphic showing these many types of extended education opportunities as well as the core list of subjects/curricula. This info-graphic illustrates how teaching & learning about health, personal & social development can and does occur inside and outside of classrooms.
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This Section: Common Topics or Terms
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Here is our list of topics and sub-topics for this section:
- Introduction & Overview
- Education Equity, Inclusion & SuccessMulti-component Approaches (MCAs)
- Staff Wellness
- Student Conduct & Discipline
- Engaging/Empowering Youth
- Parent Participation
- Community Involvement/Ownership
- Learning/Behaviour Models (LBMs)
- Behaviour & Learning Theories
- Government/ Inter-Sector Actions/Levers