By: Krystle Crossman
Deeper learning is not a new concept or practice. It has been around for a long time. But studies show that the schools that are more focused on a deeper learning method are producing more graduates than other schools. With the implementation of Common Core standards and state required testing students have more pressure than ever to learn everything that is thrown at them. When this happens other skills that will be necessary later in life get pushed aside and they are left without.
In schools that do not focus on deeper learning the students must focus strictly on the academics and the material that is on the required tests that they will have to take. They are so busy being focused on this that other skills such as problem solving, teamwork, and self-directed learning often fall to the wayside. Those skills are extremely important later in life such as in college and on the job but in many schools they aren’t as important as drilling the required materials into their heads. There are some schools that focus on deeper learning instead. This is when the students study hard and learn the required material but in the process also learn those other valuable skills that they need. The learning in these schools is more project-based so that the students will have to do research and present what they have learned but they will also have to figure out how to collaborate with others, use public speaking methods, and use self-directed learning as well.
Schools in California and New York that focused on deeper learning outperformed their peers when it came to testing. One of the biggest problems with the new standardized learning is that teachers are too afraid to come out of the box and teach students new things. The outcomes of the testing can directly affect the teacher and so they focus only on what needs to be learned and nothing more. This unfortunately robs the students of a broader education. The teachers feel that deeper learning is yet another new standard that is being forced upon them but they are really concepts that have been around for years. Students perform better and learn valuable skills that last into adulthood but many are too afraid to make the change.