21 st century content and context
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21 st Century Content and Context. How will I ever use this in the real world?. 21 st Century Content and Context. How will I ever use this in the real world?. WELCOME BACK. Welcome Back!. Essential Question.

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21st Century Content and Context

How will I ever use this in the real world?

21st Century Content and Context

How will I ever use this in the real world?


  • Welcome Back!

Essential Question

  • How should we change CTE instruction to incorporate 21st century content and context?

    • How do we “engage with” digital natives?

21st Century Skills Framework

21st Century Content

  • Global Awareness

  • Financial, Economic, Business and Entrepreneurship Literacy

  • Civic Literacy

  • Health & Wellness Awareness

Technical Literacy

  • Read, understand, and communicate in the language of a career field.

  • Use mathematical reasoning and understanding to solve problems found in a career field.

  • Understand scientific and technical concepts, principles, and processes for application in a career field.

  • Use technology to complete projects and authentic tasks in a broad career field.

21st Century Context

  • Make content relevant to students’ lives

  • Bring the world into the classroom

  • Take students out into the world

  • Create opportunities for students to interact with each other, with teachers and other knowledgeable adults in authentic learning experiences

Perkins IV Requirements

  • Describe how local recipients will encourage students to take “rigorous and challenging” core academic courses (HSTW key practice)

  • Align programs to rigorous technical standards (HSTW key practice)

  • Strengthen academic and technical skills of students through integration (HSTW key practice)

  • Provide experiences in all aspects of an industry

  • Provide professional development (sustained, classroom focused, not one-day)


High Standards

Low Context




High Standards

High Context








Low Standards

Low Context


Low Standards

High Context











Apply in


Apply across


Apply to predictable



Apply to unpredictable





Adapted from W. Daggett


Where is your teaching in relation to these quadrants?

Culinary Arts

Create and market a signature sauce based on French cuisine for a new seafood restaurant

Research the origin of French sauces





R Low

Measure ingredients accurately for a bechamel sauce

List the types of sauces used in French cuisine

Low RelevanceHigh

Building Construction

Analyze the cost and efficiency of using “green” wall products for use in the interior renovation of a 1970’s ranch style home. Present your recommendations to the home owner

Research types of wall finishes and categorize according to construction cost





R Low

List the steps in installing dry wall

Apply “mud” to dry wall seams

Low RelevanceHigh

Where is your teaching in relation to these quadrants?

Basic Assignment

  • Assume you are a marketing representative for a major tennis shoe manufacturer. Survey 20 teens and find the average cost and purchasing rationale for purchasing tennis shoes.

Proficient Assignment

  • Assume you are a marketing team for a major tennis shoe manufacturer. Survey 20 teens and find the average cost paid for tennis shoes. Analyze historical and current teen market trends and develop a report based on your findings.

Advanced Assignment

  • Assume you are a marketing team for a major tennis shoe manufacturer. Survey 20 teens and find the average cost paid for tennis shoes. Prepare a report, including a hypothesis and conclusion(s) that summarize your findings, that will explain the trends in the teen market to your manager. Close the presentation with a “teen dream shoe” design and sales pitch based on your hypothesis.

What type of assignments do your students complete?

Are you teaching contextually?Always=5; Most of the time=4; some of the time-3; Occasionally=2; Hardly ever=1

  • Do assignments & instruction include many real problem-solving situations?

  • Do assignments & instruction result in students believing, “I need to learn this.”

  • Do lessons and activities help students project into possible careers & workplaces?

    (Adapted from CORD)

Are you teaching contextually?Always=5; Most of the time=4; some of the time-3; Occasionally=2; Hardly ever=1

  • Are students in interactive groups that require decision making?

  • Does instruction improve students’ reading and writing skills and mathematical reasoning and achievement?

  • Do assignments and assessments require students to use 21st century content, technology tools and skills?

    (Adapted from CORD)

Traditional Assignment:Research Paper on a Disease

  • Go to the library and do research

  • Write ten pages

  • Use proper essay form

  • Include a bibliography

Project-Based Assignment

Develop family medical histories

Write a proposal to study health issue of personal or community concern

Keep a research log

Produce a newsletter

Develop lesson plan and materials for underserved population

Present to real audience

The Revised Assignment – Infection Control

Memo to Family Practice Physician staff about excess staff absenteeism due to illness

Team research






Protective Wear

The Revised Assignment – Medical Dilemmas

As a member of hospital ethics committee you must contribute to an oral presentation regarding continuing life support.

Professional issues

Ethical issues

Legal issues

Moral issues

Psychological issues

Personal issues

Researchers found that students’ scores on standardized tests and alternative assessments were higher if their classes involved work that resembled real situations. Newmann, U. of Wisconsin

Six A’s of Quality Projects

  • Authenticity

  • Academic Rigor

  • Applied Learning

  • Active Exploration

  • Adult Relationships

  • Assessment

Adapted from: Real Learning, Real Work: School-to-Work as High School Reform, Adria Steinberg.

Characteristics of Well-Designed Projects

  • Students are at the center of the learning process

  • Project work aligns with standards and is central to the curriculum

  • Projects are driven by curriculum-framing questions

  • Projects involve ongoing and multiple types of assessment

  • Project has real world connections

  • Students demonstrate knowledge through a product or performance

  • Technology supports and enhances student learning

  • Thinking skills are integral to project work

  • Instructional strategies are varied and support multiple learning styles

Teacher’s role

  • “Guide on the side,” no longer “sage on the stage”

  • More coaching and modeling, less telling

  • More finding out with students, less being the expert

  • More cross disciplinary thinking, less specialization

  • More performance-based assessment; less paper-and-pencil, fact-recall assessment

  • More developing self-directed learners

When working on projects, students develop real-world skills

  • Work well with others; more interdependence with other students in group work

  • Make thoughtful decisions; more choices and decisions in learning activities

  • Take initiative; more responsibilities to manage project tasks and timelines

  • Solve complex problems; engaged in finding solutions to genuine problems – workplace, community, home

  • Self-manage

  • Communicate effectively

Scenario Template

You are a (insert a real-world role). You are faced with (insert a problem). You must (insert what must be done to solve the problem). Once you have decided on a course of action, you will (insert an opportunity for presentation to an authentic audience).

RAFT Writing Activity

Role – What is the writer’s role? reporter, observer, eyewitness

Audience – Who will be reading this writing? teacher, editor, tv public, web viewer

Format – What is the best way to present this writing? Letter, article, report , poem

Topic – What is subject? Famous mathematician, a worker, a reaction to a specific event?


Just as project-based learning fundamentally alters the curriculum, it also requires a more comprehensive form of assessment to evaluate student performance.

Student portfolios, oral presentations, journals, and multimedia reports provide a clearer picture of student achievement. Performance assessment is

"real-life" assessment -- the way adults are judged in society and in the workplace.

Assessment for Learning

  • Rubrics

  • Scoring Guides

  • Team vs. Individual

  • Peer assessments

  • Student-led conferences – self-evaluation


  • G – goals from the real world

  • R – roles that are authentic and based in reality

  • A – audiences to whom the students will present

  • S – situations involving real world conflict to be solved, decisions to be made, investigation to be completed, or invention to be created

  • P – products and performances culminating from the study

  • S – standards for evaluating project-based products and performances


  • Every student in West Virginia must be:

    • A critical thinker

    • A problem solver

    • An innovator

    • An effective communicator

    • An effective collaborator

    • A self-directed learner

    • Information and media literate

    • Globally aware

    • Civically engaged

    • Financially and economically literate

Guiding Questions for Content Area Breakouts

  • How can student-centered projects and problems incorporate these attributes?

  • How should existing projects and problems be revised to provide opportunities for higher order/deeper thinking?

To access a copy of this PowerPoint

  • http://wvde.state.wv.us/hstw/


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