Aiken County, an Education Associates partner that is using Project Discovery district-wide, has been featured in CEC Smartbrief this month for applying classroom knowledge to the real world.
During a conference for more than 200 Aiken County School District administrators and teachers this week, a national consultant showed them some math questions a student might find on a test.
• Express probabilities as fractions, percents or decimals.
• Classify triangles according to angle size and/or length of sides.
Then the consultant, Dr. Bill Daggett, produced other questions: Calculate percentages of advertising in a newspaper. Tour the school building and identify examples of parallel and perpendicular lines, planes and angles.
The last two questions are asking essentially for the same answers, but students are far more likely to respond positively to them, Daggett said.
“That’s a framework that’s interesting and relevant to students,” said Dr. Beth Everitt, the district superintendent. “It’s important to put their work into a context that they can understand.”
She invited Daggett to Aiken to meet with educators and discuss reforms on reaching children most effectively in the classroom. A study of 75 high-achieving schools highlights their focus on rigor and relationships along with the skills and knowledge they have to learn.
“It goes beyond academics and includes the need for personal skills, which employers tell us,” Everitt said. “They want to know how people get along and where they’re going in their careers. The world is changing and will continue to change. Education has to change with it.”