A new 21st century pedagogical model

This is something I have pondered for years, a new model, a 21st century model, for understanding and implementing best practices into teaching.  We were asked to consider this in the course I’m doing called ‘Advanced Pedagogy’, and as an online learning designer, I have been very heavily into instructional design models and models for creating new learning experiences.  I’ve explored many of these, and other learning models, on my blog over the years but the few that have particularly stood out to me are:

  • The TEC-VARIETY Model
  • Hybrid learning model

In the 2014 K-12 Edition of the Horizon report, hybrid learning was outlined as a mid-range trend, and this involves utilising a range of teaching and learning modes to facilitate experiences for students that produce quality learning outcomes.  A quote I found particularly valuable from the report said:

“Schools that are making use of hybrid learning models are finding that using both the physical and the virtual learning environments to their highest potentials allows teachers to further personalise the learning experience, engage students in a broader variety of ways, and even extend the learning day.  Hybrid models, when designed and implemented effectively, enable students to use the school day for group work and project-based activities, while using the network to access readings, videos, and other learning materials on their own time, leveraging the best of both environments.” (p. 12)

I think that any model we utilise pedagogically needs to be flexible, agile and adaptable to the needs of all learners.

Another point I think is important in any model is that it is progressive in nature or provides some sort of continuum on which to base the starting point of learning about something new and the mastery of something.  I think that students need to have something to aim for, so having a model that presents a continuum will provide teachers with guidelines on which to frame learning and progression of.  Like the progression through syllabus stages, e.g. stages 1-6, however, more micro progressive.

The TEC VARIETY model is one that was developed to address motivation and engagement in online learning, but which I feel is applicable to all teaching and learning if considered in the right light.  The model is an acronym for the following: tone/climate, encouragement, curiosity, variety, autonomy, relevance, interactive, engagement, tension and yields.  Each of these elements have been researched and proven to have significant effect on engagement and motivation.  More can be read at www.tecvariety.com

The TPACK model is also a favourite of mine and one that I feel is crucial in the 21st century.  It is a holistic model that comprehensively covers how to work seamlessly with content, pedagogy and technology in curriculum design and its about understanding how each combination of the three work together to create a model for 21st century learning.

Will work on visuals for my combined ideas and the most important ones but as I was reading another one of the course readings, it mentioned other elements that I thought might be relevant for a new pedagogical model.  Kalantzis and Cope (2012) conducted research that was published under the title of ‘New learning: a charter for change in education’ and in it they said: “The transformed economic system emerging from the current financial crisis will require human capacities that only education can nurture, based on deep knowledge, practical imagination, creative participation, intellectual inquisitiveness and collaborative commitment” (p. 83).  These words immediately stood out to me as essential elements in a new pedagogical model for the 21st century but what would they look like in the classroom?



Johnson, L., Adams Becker, S., Estrada, V., and Freeman, A. (2014). NMC Horizon Report: 2014 K-12 Edition . Austin, Texas: The New Media Consortium

Kalantzis, M., & Cope, B. (2012). New learning: a charter for change in education. Critical Studies in Education, 53(1), 83-94.


Horizon Report 2014 K-12 Edition – Free and open education for all

The further I read into the report, the more I was convinced it was one of the best reports ever, and when I recommend current research to new teachers, I recommend and will continue to recommend this report.  I have had an interest in Open Education Resources (OER) for a number of years and thoroughly enjoyed doing an OER Workshop on WikiEducator a while back as well, it was very informative and valuable.  When I decided to become a teacher, it was so that I could help provide opportunities for others that they might not otherwise have, and OER can facilitate that more than any other type of learning resources I feel.  Education should not become a money-making enterprise (despite the need for money to efficiently run etc) but should facilitate growth in collaboration and sharing across networks of educators.  When I see teachers selling their resources online it gets to me, why do they feel the need to sell their resources and not share?

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-xGRztrWv-k]

The report highlights that “the goal is that OER materials are freely copiable, freely remixable, and free of barriers to access, cultural sensitivities, sharing, and educational use” (p. 10).  Creative Commons is so new still but it is a great start to ensuring the culture of sharing resources is increased.  Only a mid-range trend, meaning it will become more prevalent within classrooms in approximately 3-5 years.  The thing is, and this is evident even within my own teaching context, that teachers hold very tight to their work and things they create.  However, isn’t any resources we create whilst in another’s employ, owned by that employer and therefore subject to the copyright restrictions of that organisation? Policies, it will all come down to policies but also the education of educators in what OER is and how it can benefit others in the future.

For great projects being conducted in this field, check out oercommons.org

From oercommons.org 2007 - 2014, OER Commons, a project created by ISKME. Except where otherwise noted, content on this site is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 License.

From oercommons.org 2007 – 2014, OER Commons, a project created by ISKME. Except where otherwise noted, content on this site is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 License.

The Horizon Report 2014 K-12 Edition – Changing roles of teachers

I love reading the Horizon report each year and getting a glimpse of what educational research is saying will be increasingly adopted within various educational contexts.  Reading through the 2014 K-12 report recently, I was intrigued and captured by the ‘Elements of the Creative Classroom Framework’ (ECCF) and how it outlines the dimensions dealt with in the report.  (I also loved it because I am a very visual person.)  The ECCF elements include: infrastructure; content and curricula; assessment; learning practices; teaching practices; organisation; leadership and values; and, connectedness.   The report deals with each of these elements within it as they pertain to trends, challenges and emerging technologies, however, most particularly on policy, leadership and practice.

[youtube http://youtu.be/m7rKL3XcRtc]

A fast trend that was identified that I believe was crucial to include in this report is ‘Rethinking the roles of teachers’.  More than ever, technology has changed the role of the teacher in 21st century classrooms.  Gone are the days of teachers being the source of all information, the ones to lead activities and instruction.  The Horizon Report says:

“The integration of technology into everyday life is causing many educational thought leaders to argue that schools should be providing ways  for students to continue to engage in learning activities, formal and informal, beyond the traditional school day.” (p. 6)

The video above is an oldie but a goodie, looking at the roles of 21st century learners, requiring that teachers: be lifelong learners; be apart of a larger network of professionals; make connections between learning in all different contexts; create long-range goals for technology integration; be competent will digitally-enabled pedagogies; and, so many more aspects not yet identified perhaps.  Classrooms need to be student-centered more than ever because I believe students are engaging in more informal learning than ever before, e.g. watching YouTube to learn new things.  Teachers need to adopt teaching methods that students of the 21st century are familiar with to a certain extent and that is through videos and games more than ever.

Some key points made about the role of teachers include:

  • Teachers are no longer the primary sources of information and knowledge for students
  • Teachers need to reinforce the habits and discipline that shape life-long learners
  • Teachers are increasingly expected to be knowledgeable on the practices, skills and resources that will be useful to students as they continue their education and seek gainful employment.
  • Incorporating entrepreneurship into education will help teachers to bring technology into the classroom and into developing lifelong learners.

The report identifies the key to nurturing the new 21st century roles of teachers as being in professional development.  I believe this to be true to a degree, however, school policies and strategic plans need to cater for the change in pedagogies and classroom structures as well.  Such drastic changes in teaching methodology will require changes in organisational structure and culture, which cannot happen immediately but can begin to cater for 21st century needs over time.  School structures are still very hierarchical and traditional classrooms have operated in the same way essentially, with all students answering to an authority-figure who is in charge.  Do school structures need to change a little bit to distribute power more evenly?  At the school where I work, teacher professional development often occurs in areas that students can see, in order for students to see their teachers as lifelong learners as well.  I think that this strategy is one great way that reflects 21st century paradigm shifts.  Will continue to reflect more on teacher’s roles…