Teachers hold the key to student success
"We think about the world in all the ways we experience it. We think visually, we think in sound, we think kinesthetically, we think in abstract terms, we think in movement, and in many other ways too. Intelligence is dynamic...and wonderfully interactive." (Ken Robinson, 2006)
We learn multi-modally, too. So let's teach that way. Every day, in every lesson. Embody Learning is a teaching model that guides teachers to connect content to classroom strategies that engages students dynamically - physically, intellectually, emotionally and socially. You might say it engages students naturally, the way students are as real people. Which equips teachers to make content relevant to students' lives as they make the learning experience real.
The Embody Learning model is built on three basic components of an engaging lesson: Engage, Explore and Show...
Teachers set the focus for each learning experience - each lesson - with this first vital step: engaging students. It creates the environment for delivering every standard and all content, creates relevance, captures attention and feeds curiosity. Effectively, the engage step of the lesson earns student buy-in, links to students' existing knowledge of the subject area and to previous lessons. The engage step opens doors that bring students wholly into the new Embody Learning lesson as the teacher guides the class toward full engagement, full student ownership and preparation for discovery...
- Understanding who is in the class and what engages them personally
- Openness to explore new and better engagement methods
- Classroom management
- Presentation skills that connect with students, exemplify confidence
- Creativity that disrupts the ordinary, spans curiosity
- Repertoire of physical session-starter activities appropriate to grade level and subject
- Solid lesson planning, with a vision
- Student engagement rubric
- and so many more...
Students learn by embodying knowledge using their senses, responding to interaction with classmates, inquiring, negotiating and discovering through a variety of learning experiences or strategies that the teacher has designed to enhance lesson content. Teachers' connection of content to core Embody Learning strategies create opportunities for students to build understanding and meaning - the ultimate learning goal. In the explore core of Embody Learning, verbs are expressed physically, math problems are worked out with students standing in for numbers, history and science and language play out in the bodies, emotions, interactions and imaginations of learners right there in the classroom.
Embodiment becomes the vernacular for learning; teachers and students come to facilitate learning through movement, dialog and visualization. Soon students initiate Embody Learning constructs as a preferred mode. The classroom is owned by all learners who enter it with enthusiasm and pursue knowledge ambitiously.
- Comfort level with students exploring knowledge, sharing ownership of the process
- Embody Learning lesson observation rubric
- Strategies for lesson content
- and so many more...
When students “show” in an activity rather than just “tell” on a written assessment, the experience provides a more rigorous revelation of how well students understand the meaning and relevance of content. In Embody Learning, students “get it.” They “live it/do it.” And in most cases, they have discovered the main point in collaboration with their peers and gone on to test the point, enhancing it with the Embody Learning experience.
In the Embody Learning classroom, the teacher can see at any moment what content students are using. Each class is a performance assessment, the critical tool in the learning process. With the content so transparent, teachers provide ongoing input so students can adjust, refine, rebuild and fine-tune their constructs through sharing and discussing the evidence of content that is demonstrated in their use of Embody Learning strategies.
Most Embody Learning lessons will include demonstrations of the learning by students, often in groups, of new knowledge before the full class. This active engagement and class-wide demonstration provides students a multi-sensory understanding and meaning of content that deepens actual learning. And the results show up in test scores.
- Communication (see Embody Learning Skills Rubric)
- Listening for opportunities to empower students to teach; and for breakthroughs
- Make a habit of allowing time for students to show what they have learned
- Embody Learning Skills Rubrics
- Video samples of strategies that demonstrate learning (for variety)
- and so many more...