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Success in the 21st Century

Teaching Students Skills to Build Brighter Futures!

In the past, learning a skill or trade, following directions, and working hard was sufficient for success. However, today’s global economy is now driven by technology and innovation—and students’ skills must reflect this change.   

It is imperative that students develop an array skills that will allow them to compete in a global economy: they must be critical thinkers, have the ability to creatively solve complex problems, collaborate with people from diverse backgrounds, demonstrate superior interpersonal skills, communicate clearly in several types of media, learn ever-changing technologies, and know how to process floods of information.  In addition, students must learn to engage in debate and civil discourse as informed citizens. Those are some high expectations for today’s students!

Preparation for the future begins in the classrooms, and we are transforming our classrooms into environments that foster and develop 21st century skills by:

  • Focusing on academic discourse  Our teachers are trained to implement techniques to increase the time our students spend in productive partnerships, using academic language to build on others’ ideas and develop their own thoughts.  Our classrooms are set up to support group work and partnerships for collaborative discussions.  The focus on academic discourse builds interpersonal and critical thinking skills, and lays the foundation to express thinking and solve problems collaboratively creatively—and innovatively!
  • Making connections   In the past, different content areas (such as mathematics and literature) were taught as separate and distinct subjects.  Today, we see more connectivity between science and literature, math and the arts.  Our new curriculum in language arts and mathematics reflects the connectivity of different areas of study.   New curricula incorporate the Next Generation Science Standards.  
  • Fostering creativity and technological innovation  Through the use of technology, students, teachers, and families can maintain connections and extend learning.  Learning is no longer limited to a “place”, and students can access information digitally from all over the world. Our RAP (‘Realizing Amazing Potential’) program and many schools are developing ‘tinker’ spaces, utilizing 3-D printers, exploring coding, and ultimately transforming our classrooms into beehives of exploration and innovation.  

The rapid changes we experience in our world, oftentimes on a daily basis, requires students to be flexible, take initiative, lead when necessary, and ultimately become innovative thinkers. At LESD we are committed to ensuring that our students are competent and prepared to successfully participate in a global economy.