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Students learning in depth - Maple Ridge News

September 29, 2015 , by Neil Corbett - Maple Ridge News

Jocelyn McIntosh, a Simon Fraser University grad and B.C. teacher for the past 10 years was recently interviewed by the Maple Ridge News on the Learning In Depth (LiD) program.

B.C. schools are shifting their curriculum away from the traditional ‘long list of topics and facts’ that students must learn and instead, educators are moving towards providing their students with a different way of learning by becoming experts in a topic through something called, Learning in Depth or LiD.

It’s an interesting but not so new concept, which is making its way into the B.C. school curriculum more and more. LiD focuses on making children an expert or authority on a topic such as whales, coral or money rather than having just a little bit of knowledge on a smorgasbord of topics.

Jocelyn McIntosh, who did her master’s at Simon Fraser University where LiD was part of the program, has been using LiD with her Grade 4-5 students at Glenwood elementary for the past two school years.

 “They get a topic, and they become an expert for the year,” McIntosh explained. The LiD program allows students to grow their knowledge in a particular field creating experts on a topic out of each student. In turn, that student begins to believe in themselves more and more; they create an “emotional connectedness” to the material. Learning becomes easier.

The psychology is similar for children and adults, said McIntosh.

McIntosh has been a teacher for 10 years. She said that the traditional curriculum of a “checklist of things we had to teach,” has no depth to it. “Learning one thing in depth helps us feel confident,” she said. “The more you know about a topic, the more you feel confident and engaged.”

McIntosh believes that the LiD plan fits well into the new curriculum in B.C., which will be implemented over the next three years.

“Flexible learning is at the heart of the refined approach and it will help teachers tap into the passions and interests of individual students. Students can learn about core subjects while doing projects related to their interests, such as music, hockey, or dinosaurs,” said the Education Ministry’s press release on the new curriculum.

Jocelyn McIntosh, will be offering a workshop on LiD during an October professional development session.

The full article was published in the Maple Ridge News on September 22, 2015 and written by Neil Corbett,.

You can read the full article at: Students Learning In Depth

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