Education in America needs to be more powerful if we want to prepare all our children for the real world. We need a learning approach designed for our times – one that builds on the basic “three Rs” of education to add what is, and always has been, the fourth R: Relevance. Today that means preparing young people for an ever-changing world where higher-order skills are in demand and learning never stops. We call this learning approach Connected Learning.
- Academically oriented
- Openly networked
- Shared purpose
This summer, major advocates for the potential of the Internet – including the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, Mozilla, the National Writing Project, and others – are putting Connected Learning into practice. The Summer of Making and Connecting organizes hundreds of events, projects and programs in communities across the nation, around the world, and online to help youth connect learning to their interests and to enable teachers to learn from and network with their innovative peers.
The campaign will engage hundreds of thousands of people in creating things on the web, with hardware, and on paper—working in schools and community spaces and at kitchen tables. The campaign brings together organizations from the worlds of DIY, making, writing, and learning to build the Connected Learning movement.
Our partners believe Connected Learning is an essential learning approach if we are to engage more students and better prepare today’s youth for real life and real work in a world of constant change. Just as previous generations harnessed the advancements of their times, schools and community spaces such as museums and libraries should leverage new technologies to deepen the connections between student interests, academic rigor and real world paths to success. Schools need to build on the basics so students graduate with the higher-order skills such as critical thinking, creativity, collaboration and communication they need to succeed. Because for education to be relevant and useful today, it must recognize that retreating from these realities means leaving a generation of children behind.
The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation supports creative people and effective institutions committed to building a more just, verdant, and peaceful world.
Founded in July 2003, the nonprofit Mozilla is guided by the principles of the Mozilla Manifesto. This summer, Mozilla is sponsoring the Maker Party 2013 as part of the Summer campaign.
National Writing Project
The National Writing Project focuses the knowledge, expertise, and leadership of our nation’s educators on sustained efforts to improve writing and learning for all learners. This summer, the NWP is launching the Educator Innovator Network to bring bring educators a wide array of summer learning opportunities.