Closing Day activity explores 21st Century learning
The world is flat!
The 350-plus participants at HFM BOCES’ Closing Day program
perked up when they were told the world is no longer round, as
they were taught in school.
Author Thomas L. Friedman’s observation that the world is flat
is actually the title of his best-selling book that analyzes the
progress of globalization and its impact on the 21st century.
That impact, on education, is the focus of HFM BOCES’
Professional Development Plan for 2008-09.
author’s “flat-world” metaphor describes the level playing field
that is developing for global commerce and competition, which in
turn is having a significant effect on education in America.
The staff development component of the Closing Day program
introduced themes that will echo throughout 2008-09 at HFM.
A short video introduced the audience to the 21st Century skills
that young people will need to succeed in today’s world. The
video noted that schools and students must move beyond
traditional core subjects to include higher levels of creative
thinking, global awareness and a mastery of technology and
After the video, the large crowd was divided into 14 smaller
groups to participate in a brief awareness exercise. Each group
was given a unique question to ponder and asked to select the
21st Century skills that were relevant to the discussion.
Among the questions they considered were:
True or False: India and China play a role in the increasing
cost of oil and gasoline in the United States.
True or False: 1.3 billion people live on less than $1 per day.
True or False: India is preparing to market an automobile that
will cost just over $2,000.
All of those statements are true, as participants learned during
the awareness exercise that demonstrated the effect changes in
the global community will have on how young people are educated
in local schools.
“We wanted to start a dialog today,” said Coordinator of
Instructional Services Stacy Ward, who is a member of HFM’s
professional development planning team. “We want to continue to
spread awareness among the staff and emphasize the real need for
educational change in the region.”
The professional development plan is part of a regional Call to
Action initiative, a partnership between HFM BOCES and three
other area BOCES to develop resources and programs designed to
help area students prepare for the educational and employment
demands of the 21st century. Click
read more about the Call to Action. Click
learn more about HFM’s 2008-09 Professional Development Plan.