Looking at student work
I teach in an inquiry learning elementary school (PYP), an environment which facilitates and empowers deeper learning very effectively. As I have explored inquiry in the classroom, I have noticed that I do far less teaching and far more documentation.
Students engaged in authentic learning shouldn't be bothered by standards or specific learning outcomes, yet they constantly accomplish them. As a teacher, I see myself more as a learning documentarian seeking out evidence of their learning as they inquire into their interests and curiosities.
Google Doc experiment
How it works
Our learning continua are organized by phases, so I color coded each. When a student demonstrates a particular learning outcome, I indicate the date and hyperlink it to a digital version of the artifact. Examples so far have included scanned writing assessments, photographs, Evernote entries, videos, and blog posts. When an artifact is recorded, the shade of the box for that learning outcome is made lighter. A white box indicates a mastered learning outcome.
The example I provided in this post is for a sixth grader, so I took it for granted that the first three phases were mastered. Please have a look at phases four and five and follow the links to get a sense of how this type of document can work. If it were used from a young age and accompanied the student through elementary school, it would serve as an authentic representation of their learning.
This is still an experiment, and your comments and suggestions are highly welcomed. I would certainly appreciate collaborators on this project to develop an efficient system to document deeper learning!