Conditions for Learning

Opportunity to learn was originally defined as the alignment between what was taught and what was assessed. It has gradually taken on a more specific meaning where educators and stakeholders are developing taxonomies and defining conditions for learning that allow deeper alignment between actions and outcomes.

This includes concepts related to conditions for learning “by focusing on student and teacher learning, school leaders keep their focus on outcomes rather than inputs. This inevitably leads to working side by side with teachers, supporting and decluttering efforts to improve teachers’ learning and that of their students.”

As we saw in the recent 822chat, opportunity to learn is taking on a meaning of addressing the needs of the whole child.

What are Necessary Conditions for Learning?

“Engagement, basic needs are met to be ready to learn, feeling safe.” – Michelle Smart

“Relationships have to be built if a student knows you care about them and why you want to teach them, then you’ll see magic happen.” – Ryan Timm

“Once the students’ basic needs are met then true learning can occur – their mental health, their physical health, their pain is dealt with, then with a safe, encouraging, and stimulating environment, amazing things can happen!” – Kris Felicello

Ensuring the Right Conditions for Learning

What can school leaders do to ensure the conditions for learning are established in schools and classrooms?

“Relationships are the most important part of ensuring conditions for learning. Some take longer to develop. The road can be long and slow for some students to develop connections, but the more we hang in there and stick with our kids, the better the outcome.” – Erika Garcia

“Establishing inspirational relationships with teachers and staff, coaching teachers as designer artists of learner experiences, and coaching teachers in evidence-based best-practice strategies.” – Chris Chappotin

“By keeping learning the focal point and giving teachers the support they need to be flexible and creative to meet the needs of the students.” – Tracy Bratton

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