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Updated by Amy Vickrey on Sep 07, 2014
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Amy Vickrey Amy Vickrey
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21st Century Learner Websites

This is a list of thought-provoking videos that define and/or identify what 21st century learning looks like. Add to the list, please!

A Vision of Students Today

#1: This is a very thought-provoking video about what students today are doing with their technology in class and what they aren't doing in class that is expected. There is no narration; there is techno-sounding music with messages and text written on classroom walls, boards, and desks. There are also students holding up single sheets of paper with statistics and thoughts on them. Their messages are clear: they are multi-taskers dealing with societal problems they didn't create. The overwhelming fact that comes across is that most of them are on some type of technology the majority of their day.

21st Century Skills: What Do We Do?

#2: This video asks the question, "What do we do?" Our nation's workforce comes out of high school ill-prepared for college or a career. It proposes we make our students "masters with content, not of content." There are three steps to education and using content to teach skills: foundation, explanation, and application. The video has good music that builds intensity from problem identification to the solution.

Rethinking Learning: The 21st Century Learner | MacArthur Foundation

#3: This video starts begins with a man talking about the mind of a gamer and then moves through a couple of other speakers speaking about the minds of 21st century learners. It focuses on "informal" education outside of school. There is a statement about formal education "still" being viable and relevant, "but"... It is disturbing to hear school spoken about as if it might be on its way out; however, the video ends by saying formal education is still necessary, we just need to figure out how to combine or blend informal and formal and work with them together in schools. It has good music and high-quality video images.

Teaching the 21st Century Learner

#4: This video opens with the statement that 19th century traditional schooling was forced in the 20th century and now into the 21st century. School children now are "Digital Natives" of the "Digital Generation." We have to change our teaching styles to be more collaborative and globally-connected. There are no words in this video, just text, graphics, and images. The music is upbeat and timed with the transitions.

Pay Attention - Final Final Cut - TeacherTube

#5: This video uses music, images, and text with statistics and rapid-fire questions. It is meant to make educators think about how their students learn, what they learn, and what they do with this learning. It makes educators think about what they use to help their students learn as well. The rapid-fire questions are little hard to follow, though.

21st Century Literacy

#6: This video focuses on the meaning of literacy. It is not just learning to read and write. It means decoding pictures, music, and sound with text. It also means being able to communicate your learning through speech, not just writing. "Print is one-way communication." Successful achievement of literacy occurs through more self-directed learning. This video has high energy music, but an old flip cell phone graphic.

Engage Me!

#7: This video is about children and what they want to do with their education.They want to create and share their learning digitally through podcasts, blogs, wikis, etc. There is bouncy music, and most of the kids are elementary school age.

A Vision of K-12 Students Today

#8: The messages are about allowing students to create and to "engage me." There are some statistics about digital technology and education in China, as well. This video is similar to #7 above. There are no spoken words and more messages on signs held by young children. The music is slower and more poignant. The children seem to have sad, serious faces, which appeals to the viewer's emotions, rather sense of logic.

21st Century Learning Matters

#9: This video is meant to start the conversation of how we teach 21st century learners as if it was still the 20th century. We are encouraged, as teachers, to adopt and use the same technologies and learning as we expect from our students. 21st century learners need to be more self-directed in their learning; content is not enough, and assessment of learning must change. This equation is suggested: What? + How? + Where? = 21st century learning. There is a boring foreword by Dr. James H. Billington of the Library of Congress, but the rest is mostly a narration with a pleasant, Siri-sounding female voice.