Three Ways Vertical Non-Permanent Surfaces (VNPS) Are Evolving Classroom Learning
Originally posted in November 2017.
Continuing with the relaunch of our popular blogs, here is the next installment for your Summer reading list. Enjoy!
In recent years, student engagement has become a top priority in the classroom.
In fact, nothing is cooler than seeing students engaged in solving problems and figuring things out using visual learning tools like our flipcharts and notebooks. Great things happen when they can properly show their thinking without worrying about making mistakes.
And it's all about letting students do the following:
1. MAKE MISTAKES
Learning is about taking chances and making mistakes. And no, I didn't make it this up. There's a process called mistake-driven learning. Among the many advantages, it teaches students to take risks, encourages them to jump in and solve problems, and builds their critical thinking skills. A key component to this is leveraging erasable and reusable surfaces so students aren’t afraid to make mistakes and have to start over on a new surface.
In fact, there's the notion of the thinking classroom, a concept developed by Peter Liljedahl. It's based on experiential learning, building on your mistakes, and working collaboratively. In the thinking classroom, everyone learns together, talks it out together, and understands together, usually working problems out on a flipchart, notebook, or other non-permanent surfaces.
So make no mistake: A thinking classroom is a doing classroom.
2. THINK LESS AND DO MORE
Think less. Do more. That is our motto... for the most part. Sure, this can get you into trouble when it comes to using your judgment in life situations. But also in life, just as in the classroom, there comes a point when you need to stop planning and start doing.
By providing all students with a large, reusable surface, they don't need to create a perfect plan of attack before putting ink to paper. A lot of us think best while we are doing, so you never know what you can solve and achieve until you actually start working the problem out. This is where VNPS and other free form surfaces help students show their thinking when they can’t properly express their ideas.
Which brings us to our third and final point.
3. VNPS AND PATTERN RECOGNITION
And along the lines of jumping in and getting things done, back to Vertical Non-Permanent Surfaces. In the math classroom, for example, random groups of math students work with Wipebook Flipcharts or other erasable surfaces. VNPS’s allow students to start doing whether they are at their desks or working in a group. This allows each group to visually work out and recognize specific patterns needed to solve a problem -- which can be as simple as working with the order of operations, as seen in this coin activity.
VNPS HARD AT WORK IN THE CLASSROOM:
See for yourself how Wipebook vertical non-permanent surfaces play a central role in helping students draw connections, think outside of the box, identify patterns, and ultimately solve increasingly complex problems in a TEAM setting:
Productive struggle! These learners have been trying to solve skyscrapers #9 for several classes. Eagerly complete their work, so they can solve the puzzle! #thinkingclassroom pic.twitter.com/TZMK36lhyZ— Meagan Mutchmor (@MutchmorMath) February 11, 2019
WRITING FUNCTIONS AND COLLABORATING
Circles of Evaluation never go away! :) Teachers are up and at it this morning writing functions and collaborating at #CSPdWeek @coschoolofmines @GitHubEducation @Wipebook #VNPS pic.twitter.com/2rdGCWyM7B— Jen Poole (@mrspooleyo) July 24, 2019