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Will the REAL 4C’s Please Stand Up…

4Cs (logo 4 hands) Ver 02

Had to have a "gander"...8 Shock, horror....the web is awash with talk of the 4C’s – but not always the 4C’s of allthingslearning. For example, did you know that the 4C’s are also used in – Marketing (knew these ones), Healthcare, the Retail Business and (even) the Diamond Business? The first set of 4C's I stumbled on was because of a friend’s blog – and I was "directed" to a website called simply 4C. This site is run by Tyson Seburn, an educator in Toronto, and he has a lot to say about professional development for teachers – especially ELTers interested in tech and design. His 4C’s are:

Community - Collaborate - Connectivism - Consulting But, I guessed that last one of his meant I was barking up the wrong tree! That having been said - it's a great site! 8

Onwards-and-sideways...8 Then I got a bit "lost" – some surfing on the waves of the “21st Century Teacher” took me to the ACTFL site (the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages). And…blow me down if I didn’t find the 5C’s (of foreign language education):

Communication – Cultures – Connections – Comparisons - Communities

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That looked promising - but then I noticed "comparisons" and thought "Mmmmmmm...."!

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Spoilt for choice, I decided that procrastination was my best option

- and so decided to "delay" my research (and this post).8 Twitter....to the rescue. Out of the blue, a few days later, a tweet led me to come across what I thunk I was looking for - the 4C's I had originally been told about:

4Cs (logo 4 components) Ver 02

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Ahhhh - that's better, I thought...

8 I liked the way this set covered the priorities we need to have for kids (and teachers) as we walk down the road towards the Brave New World that is unfolding before us - and this one also included "creativity"!

But, there’s one final twist to this story!8 I once heard it said that “coincidence” is what we call something when we can’t see the “levels or pulleys”…So, yesterday morning I was pulling all my stuff together to finally do this post – I get another tweet, from Stephen Covey this time, (not a personal one, mind) saying – “…rid yourself of the five Emotional Cancers":

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Bloody hell…all this digital stuff is getting a bit much – need to "unplug" a little!8 Of course, Covey’s 5C’s were not what I had in mind – but they do “contrast” nicely with the new “kids” on the block. Afterall, isn’t it easy (in “uncertain times”) to get all wrapped up in negativity? The 4C’s do not do this – they represent a constructive, positive and optimistic "way ahead" for those of us that have lost faith in the “McCurricular” we are so-often asked to serve up our LEARNers. 8 Ken Kay, CEO of EdLeader21, has been running a great “series” on his Edutopia-based blog the past few weeks. In this series, he has been outlining how schools and districts can implement the P21 Framework for Learning (developed to assist teachers get their heads around the LEARNing outcomes that students need to become effective citizens, parents and employees in the 21st Century).

  1. The P21 guys have taken the care and time to prepare a cool video that neatly shows the “challenge” – helping kids take it “above and bejond”.

  2. They have established solid links with Project-Based Learning – a favourite at Edutopia – that aims to encourage learners to explore real-world problems and challenges with a view to creating more active and engaged LEARNing.

  3. They have also paid attention to the practical steps that schools can take to "breathe life" into the 4C’s (often a “missing” ingredient with models like this).8 Ken hasn’t quite finished all of his “steps” – but the final two (6 and 7) are on the way very soon. Why not take a look at the first few (and keep yours eyes open for the others):

  4. The Seven Steps to Becoming a 21st Century School or District

  5. Step 1: Adopt Your Vision

  6. Step 2: Create Community Consensus Around the 4C's

  7. Step 3: Align Your System to the 4C's

  8. Step 4: Use the 4Cs to Build Professional Capacity

  9. Step 5: Embed the 4Cs in Curriculum and Assessment

  10. Step 6: Use the 4C's to Support Teachers

  11. Step 7: Improve and Innovate: Create a 4C's Organization

My LAST word on this...a "big"


...to all the steps!

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P.S: Since I first published this post, Ken had finished his wonderful series (and the book that goes with it). Check it out!

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