The Four C's, Constructivism, and Digitizing Curriculum: An Inclusive Approach to Teaching Transferable Skills

The Four C's, Constructivism, and Digitizing Curriculum: An Inclusive Approach to Teaching Transferable Skills

Amy Earl (American College of Education, USA), Vicki Anne Carbee (American College of Education, USA), Karina Becerra-Murillo (Jurupa Unified School District, USA & American College of Education, USA) and Amanda Marie Evans (James Madison University, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-6967-2.ch004
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Abstract

It is estimated that by 2055 humans will have entered the fourth industrial revolution, a period where technology devices will replace or redefine the human workforce. In preparation, countries around the world have transitioned their educational practices to address the needs of the ever-changing global economy and technology advancements. This shift towards preparing a technology literate workforce is frequently referred to as 21st century skills, the implementation of curriculum which meets the projected needs of learners in the future workforce. Although educators are encouraged to integrate technology in training to better equip the learner in navigating the continuously evolving digital workspace, how this is done is less clear. The purpose of this chapter is to share an inclusive method of how educational systems can digitize constructivism with 21st century skills to ensure all students are prepared for the global workforce.
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Introduction

With rapid advancements in artificial intelligence, genetic engineering, robotics, technology is “blurring boundaries between physical, digital, and biological worlds” (McGinnis, 2020, para 1). It is estimated that by 2055 humans will have entered, The Fourth Industrial Revolution, a period where technology devices will replace or redefine the human workforce (Kodama, 2018). In preparation, countries around the world have transitioned their educational practices to address the needs of the ever-changing global economy and technology advancements (Shafie, et al., 2019). A workforce’s productivity is linked to a nation’s prosperity and science, technology, engineering, and mathematical (STEM) professions are helping to ensure competitive economic growth (Allen, 2015; Elliot, 2016). The 21st century workforce seeks employees capable of developing solutions to diverse social, political, economic, environmental, and security challenges (Niederhauser & Schrum, 2016).

Background

This shift towards preparing a technology-literate workforce is frequently referred to as 21st Century Skills, the implementation of curriculum which meets the projected needs of learners in the future workforce. Although educators are encouraged to integrate technology in training to better equip the learner in navigating the continuously evolving digital workspace, how this is done is less clear. One method for educators to include 21st Century Skills is through digitizing constructivism approaches. Constructivism prioritizes the student and student needs within the educational setting (Anagun, 2018). Digitizing constructivism is the incorporation of digital media into pedagogy while maintaining the individual learning needs of the student as a priority. This approach allows educators and students to create meaningful and personalized experiences in a face-to-face, blended, or digital classroom. The purpose of this chapter is to share an inclusive method of how educational systems can digitize constructivism with 21st Century Skills to ensure all students are prepared for the global workforce.

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Main Focus Of The Chapter

The term, 21st Century Learners, describes a population of students who were born and are being educated in the twenty-first century (Sahin, 2009). The concept of 21st Century Skills promotes constructivism and assists students in learning simple and complex concepts in a developmentally appropriate way (Howard, 2018). Shaped by Piaget and Vygotsky, a constructivist understands that learning is not linear for all students and requires flexibility from the educator (Fosnot & Perry, 2005). Constructivism occurs when learners manipulate personal experiences and rearrange learned information in meaningful ways because of personalized mental manipulation (Piaget, 1987). Constructivist education analyzes progress and individual development through the learner’s personal understanding rather than a teacher’s evaluation of the students’ understanding (Fosnot & Perry, 2005). The goal of constructivism is for students to be empowered in creating and organizing information. Constructivism promotes autonomy, flexibility, and independent decision making in the workforce.

Key Terms in this Chapter

Summative Feedback Loops: Teacher feedback which can help the student learn about their performance and affect future performance.

Accountable Talk: Another framework which helps students create student-led and inquiry-based discussion.

Narrated Slide-Deck: A presentation which is narrated by an individual to explain the slides.

Discussion Breakout Rooms: A feature within an online platform which allows large groups of students to be divided into separate “rooms” to foster smaller and more intimate discussions.

Oral Presentation: An address which is spoken.

Thinking Together: Program is a resource which sets rules and provides stems for discussion for students to utilize when engaging in deliberative communication.

Collaborative Bell-Work Discussions: A topic for discussion between students which is assigned to be quickly completed at the beginning of class to frame the lesson.

Chats: A discussion which can be virtual or face to face revolving around a certain topic.

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