Rigor is creating an environment in which each student is expected to learn at high levels,
each student is supported so he or she can learn at high levels,
and each student demonstrates learning at high levels (Blackburn, 2008).

Monday, November 28, 2011

Real Life Learning for Young Students

Students are never too young to experience real-life learning. Erin Owens creates a fun taste of reality for her first graders. As a culminating activity for an economics unit, the class takes a field trip to a Krispy Kreme (doughnut) store. They observe real-life examples of key concepts: marketing (posters and signs), jobs (cashier, doughnut maker, and manager), goods and services, and teamwork. To apply what they learned, they set up a class store. As a group, they determined the store name, what to sell, costs and needed materials, how to market the store, and the necessary jobs. “All of this took team- work and in the process, the students took ownership of their learning. It was amazing to see the application of concepts in progress. They had job applications, divided into teams, and thought of every- thing we would need to effectively run the store. I served as facilitator and material gatherer, they planned everything. At the end, the other first-grade classes came to purchase our bookmarks.”

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