A Day for Deeper Learning

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Where: Marshall County High School and the Performing Arts Center

When: Tuesday, August 1, 2017, 9-4


In some schools, students are engaged in meaningful, challenging work. Work they are excited about. In some schools, students aren’t sitting on the edge of their seats, waiting for the bell to ring. As a matter of fact, they aren’t sitting at all. They are working around the room, around the school and even outside…even in places other than the school building or on the school campus. And, they care about the work they are doing. They cared so much in fact that they can be found still working on projects long after the end of the school day.

These students are also fantastic communicators. They can talk in depth about their work, and they’ll shake your hand and look you in the eye when they do. They are impressive – to say the least – and they will be competing with our students for college admission, scholarships and ultimately, jobs. Who will have the edge?


The Hewlett Foundation defines deeper learning as a set of six interrelated competencies: mastering rigorous academic content, learning how to think critically and solve problems, working collaboratively, communicating effectively, directing one’s own learning, and developing an academic mindset — a belief in one’s ability to grow.

From http://www.hewlett.org/strategy/deeper-learning/, 12.15.16

Deeper learning prepares students to

  • know and master core academic content;
  • think critically and solve complex problems;
  • work collaboratively;
  • communicate effectively; and
  • be self-directed and able to incorporate feedback.

From http://deeperlearning4all.org/network, 12.15.16

Sessions will be led by a collection of practitioners and others who are experienced with Deeper Learning practices.

Sessions will explore topics including:

  • Personalized, deeper learning models for elementary, middle and high
  • Leading for Deeper Learning
  • One Blueprint: Lenz
  • Performance Assessments: Roundtables, Defenses, Chalk Talks, Gateways
  • Project-based Learning
  • The Power of Exhibition
  • Blended Learning as a Partner Piece
  • And MORE!


While economic data suggests that individuals will benefit from developing deeper learning abilities, the nation as a whole will only succeed if large numbers of individuals—particularly those from traditionally underserved groups—learn deeply. Making deeper learning opportunities more equitable is imperative from both a moral and an economic perspective.

The moral imperative is overriding. For years, U.S. schools have tended to offer a two-tiered curriculum, in which some students, primarily white and relatively affluent, have had opportunities for deeper learning, while others, primarily low-income and students of color, have focused almost exclusively on basic skills and knowledge. More affluent and white students get to analyze works of literature and write extensively, while low-income and minority students tend to complete worksheets that focus on memorization.

From an economic perspective, in today‘s information age, equity now becomes economically vital as well. The nation’s prosperity in the near future will depend more than ever on students from underserved groups. Children of color now account for about half of all births in the United States, and by 2050 the nation is expected to become majority-minority where more than half the population will be made up of people of color, compared with 35 percent in 2010. The U.S. economy can only thrive if the whole population, not less than half, is equipped to succeed.

· Trends in the economy mean that the fastest-growing jobs are those that require problem solving and critical thinking, while those that require only routine manual skills will be in decline.

· A 2012 report by the National Research Council concluded that deeper learning competencies—the ability to apply knowledge to new situations—are associated with better life and work outcomes.

From http://deeperlearning4all.org/understanding-the-need, 12.15.16

* A recent study by the American Institutes of Research (AIR) found that deeper learning public institutions graduate students with better test scores and on-time graduation rates nine percent higher than other institutions.

* Graduates of the deeper learning program were more likely to enroll in four-year colleges, attend selective institutions, and report higher levels of academic engagement and motivation to learn.

* Perhaps most importantly, deeper learning benefits students regardless of their background or incoming achievement levels.

From http://www.opencolleges.edu.au/informed/features/deep-learning/



In schools with a commitment to deeper learning, adults are “creating dynamic learning environments that enable students to develop a deep understanding of core content and can use that knowledge to solve problems, think critically, communicate effectively, and be self-reflective about their learning.”

From http://deeperlearning4all.org/network, 12.15.16


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