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Interest, Talent and Academic Rigor: A Model for FACS as the Cornerstone of the Curriculum.

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Presentation on theme: "Interest, Talent and Academic Rigor: A Model for FACS as the Cornerstone of the Curriculum."— Presentation transcript:

1 Interest, Talent and Academic Rigor: A Model for FACS as the Cornerstone of the Curriculum

2 The Enrichment Triad Model Developed in 1976 by Dr. Joseph Renzulli (U. Conn) Originally designed as a model for the education of gifted and talented students Since its original implementation in schools around Connecticut, several researchers (including Renzulli) began to wonder if the model would be equally beneficial to the general student population.

3 The Enrichment Triad Model Now implemented in schools all over the United States and around the world, the ETM has been proven to: Increase creative-productivity Improve self efficacy Increased post-secondary education plans of students


5 ETM in one FACS classroom

6 Guiding Questions: What do people with an interest in this area (for example, film making) do? What kind of products do they create and/or what services do they provide? What knowledge, materials, and other resources do they provide? What methods do they use to carry out their work? How, and with whom, do they communicate the results of their work? In what ways can we use the product or service to affect the intended audience?

7 Language of the Discipline


9 Forensic scientists extract human DNA Doctors and nurses learn suturing Fashion designers design and sketch Engineers learn circuit design Culinary artists create food art

10 Type III Projects provide opportunities for applying interests, knowledge, creative ideas and task commitment to a self-selected problem or area of study, acquire advanced level understanding of the knowledge (content) and methodology (process) that are used within particular disciplines, artistic areas of expression and interdisciplinary studies, develop authentic products that are primarily directed toward bringing about a desired impact upon a specified audience, develop self-directed learning skills in the areas of planning, organization, resource utilization, time management, decision making, and self-evaluation, develop task commitment, self-confidence, and feelings of creative accomplishment.


12 Lunch & Learns… For two years, 7 th grade students have spent 5 th and 6 th period (a total of about 50 minutes) in special sessions with experts in their field. Guests to date include: Cornells Biofuels Department Binghamton Universitys Art Gallery A professional Architect A cardiac nurse The Binghamton Zoo SUNY at Cortland – Sports Management Cornell Universitys Fabrics & Textile Program Binghamton University – Engineering Research BAE – Engine Controls

13 After School Activities Lectures on relevant topics to students areas of interest. High School teachers visit and share special interests and areas of expertise with students (fencing, reptiles, starfish dissections, photography and publishing books!) Community Members – PTS President hires culinary arts students to manage sale of baked goods. Health & Wellness committee hires Sports & Exercise students to explore possibility of intramural sports in the middle school. Students have begun organizing documentary night in their area of expertise. Students have planned after school clubs for students with particular interest in their Academy (Creative Writing Club, Flag Football, Fitness/Running Club, Creative Joy Art Club).

14 Youre thinking, Lovely… but what about… State tests Common Core SLOs Budget Burn out

15 Constructivist Learning This model is student-centered. It allows the teacher to be the facilitator of learning (not the imparter of knowledge). Helps create contextual learning experiences. Allows the learner to apply knowledge. Is an interactive process motivated by creation of disequilibrium for the learner.

16 Cognitive Engagement Allows students to make authentic choices and regulate their own learning. Allows students to immerse themselves in a task. Encourages mindful discovery and observation.

17 21 st Century Skills This model promotes critical thinking, problem solving, global awareness and collaboration. It is problem and project based. It engaged students in authentic problem solving. It assists students in becoming college and career ready.

18 Student Performance: Academy models have been proven to increase students ability : to plan a task and consider alternatives to monitor one's understanding and the need for additional information to notice patterns, relationships, and discrepancies to generate reasonable arguments and explanations to draw comparisons and analogies to other problems to transform factual information in to usable knowledge to fluently access relevant knowledge and selectively extract meaning from information to predict outcomes to apportion time, money, and resources to communicate effectively in different genres and formats to apply knowledge and problem solving strategies to real world problems

19 And then other teachers started to notice… So, we designed Career Academies and clustered students with similar interests into groups: Engineering & Technology Human Performance & Nutritional Science Applied Design Social Science Medicine

20 In Social Studies this year… Students will be studying the election through the eyes of their own specialty. (Mental health care for Psychology, Education reform for future Educators, green energy for engineers and so on…) Groups of students will be expected to endorse one candidate over another based on proposed policies related to his/her career interest.

21 In Math this year… Students will be studying statistics through the lens of their own specialty. For example, XX% of students from poverty graduate high school (for future teachers) or XX% of the United States energy is gathered from solar energy (for future engineers) or XX% of the children living in the United States do not have access to adequate nutrition (for future culinary artists or nutritionists).

22 In ELA this year… Students will be writing their first major research paper on a topic related to their career discipline: For example, a future psychologist might write a paper on trauma in childhood and a future architect might write a paper on the design of the Empire State Building.

23 In Science this year… Students are looking at global warming and environmentalism through their career lens. For example, a future doctor might ask what the impact of global warming might be on human health. An animal scientist might wonder about animal extinction. An engineer might explore current inventions to combat these problems and a fashion designer might design a shirt to promote an environmental campaign.

24 In Health class this year… Students examine tobacco through the lens of their chosen career discipline… A future fashion designer creates a cigarette fashion in which to read her speech on the dangers of tobacco use.

25 Future architect, Aaron: I did get frustrated a lot. I mean… A LOT because of all the hard work it was. The measurements we had to get it just right and it was very difficult but we finally got it done and laid it all down and I thought…Im taking a lot of pride in what weve done because it looks very nice. And as this went on…it did change me as a person because if we just started it and I didnt actually learn anything I would have just laid it down. I wouldnt have paid attention to it. I would have just wanted to get it done. You know…it was really fun. I really do want to be an architect still, when I grow older and my plans are to graduate from Cornell University. I really want to go to Cornell and do architecture. I want to build and design buildings that go into nature…where you dont bulldoze down trees. And I got that inspiration from an article that I read about someone who made these spheres. Three spheres…and its a hotel. I really like nature and I dont want to destroy the trees that everyone is taking down. I want to save the environment. I dont wanna tear more trees down because thats what is giving us oxygen. And I dont want to add on to more of everything. I want to contribute to nature.

26 What are students gaining? In addition to the exploration of a specific career interest and the 21 st Century Skills that are required for this type of learning, students are gaining a set of skills that are critical to future success for themselves and for our society.

27 In todays careers, wisdom is required if we hope to create a socially and environmentally just and equitable world. The careers of the 21st Century require not only an understanding of self, but the application of intelligence to complex problems that will require responsibility, ethics, teamwork and collaboration. In a world of isolationism and disconnectedness, we can no longer afford workers who engage in selfish, self-centered, socially irresponsible or social destructive behavior.


29 Family Fun Making career decisions Hands-on and technical skills Love/passion/absorption Global concerns/empathy for all living things Hard work Transformative change Post-high school plans Influence of teachers Classroom environment Understanding of career choice Independence Collaboration/relationships Desire to know more/become an expert Lifestyle Reading and writing Destiny

30 I believe that the exploration of careers (when done in a meaningful way) gives students the opportunity to become truly college and career ready by giving them a set of valuable skills and allowing them to understand their options. It also gives a critically important opportunity for exploration of self, community and relationships. Students gained an understanding of the value of their relationships and interconnectedness with other people. Students gained an understanding of how their unique talents could be used to make the world a better place. Students gained an appreciation for the joy associated with hard work. They learned what it felt like to be in a state of flow.

31 Social Studies teachers initial thoughts: The kids are so much more responsible for their own learning. In addition, when I sat in on lunch and learns or judged projects, I was able to talk to the kids about them, therefore strengthening bonds between the students and myself. Hearing students debate about who to vote for, based on actual candidates policies was so rewarding. The learning is deeper and richer.

32 Initial thoughts of the health teacher: This was such a better learning experience for not only the kids, but for me as well. My students taught me things that I didnt know! On a daily basis, my students gathered information about what they were interested in…which made them more motivated to complete the project and do it well. In addition, they learned more about the Health topics that I introduced in class. I feel as a whole my students learned more by doing these independent research projects then they would have with a traditional project or worksheet in my class. And, Ill be honest. This model is saving me from feeling burnt out and discouraged by education.

33 Initial thoughts of the ELA teacher: As the year progressed, I noticed how stressed, burnt out, and disengaged my students were becoming because of benchmark assessments, test preparation, and state standards that needed to be met. I then reevaluated my original thoughts on the career path activity idea only to discover I could not have been more wrong about it being just another thing I had to do. Once I began to really ponder the idea of getting students more excited about their futures, I uncovered the value of Career Academies. Not only do my students need the opportunity to explore their futures, but they need to have the chance to do so in a structured and meaningful way. That is why I decided to go ahead and plan a unit based on this great idea.

34 Initial thoughts of the math teacher: I would like the students to take time to discover how much math will be used in their college major should they decide to attend college after high school and in whatever career they choose. Since 7th grade math focuses on the basics of many different areas of math, I would like the students to learn how 7th grade math will be crucial to their success in high school and college math. I have found that my students are more invested in my curriculum when they can actually see the importance or use of a topic in math class. There have been times this year where I have incorporated examples that relate to different career academies. My students have been more engaged in math class on these days.

35 Initial thoughts of the science teacher: Students were actively involved with their learning during the duration of the investigation. Students who frequently struggle and need assistance and supervision were independently researching and utilizing the laptops in the classroom to express their learning. It was thrilling to witness students shine; student who normally have difficulty learning and expressing themselves in a more traditional classroom setting, overwhelmed the instructor with the level at which they worked independently. Students were eager to start working every day and enjoyed showing their presentation to their peers. The freedom students felt from having choice in their learning, is still noticeable and carries into classroom instruction and projects.

36 And if youd like to speak with me further… Send me an email:

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