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ERIC Number: EJ860983
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Nov
Pages: 2
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-2166-160X
AASL's New Standards: Worth the Time and Effort!
Franklin, Pat; Stephens, Claire Gatrell
School Library Monthly, v26 n3 p37-38 Nov 2009
The American Association for School Librarians (AASL) convened a task force to study the need for standards and developed guidelines for the 21st century called "Learning for Life" (L4L). These guidelines were ardently discussed, and experts were called in to address concerns about how the standards would cover all areas critical for 21st-century learners. Many people debated these ideas and eventually the standards emerged. At first glance, the AASL "Standards for the 21st-Century Learner" seem broad, but an examination of the first standard alone indicates this is not so. Standard 1 states, "Learners use skills, resources and tools to inquire, think critically, and gain knowledge." There are nine skills required to meet this standard from Skill 1.1.1 which states, "Follow an inquiry-based process in seeking knowledge in curricular subjects and make the real-world connection for using this process in own life" to Skill 1.1.9, "Collaborate with others to broaden and deepen understanding." These skills require teaching students in a new way. They are not about memorization of information or mastery of a particular software or Web site; they prepare students to be inquisitive learners who can use their wits to gain knowledge from whatever resource or emerging technology they encounter. The first standard is used as an example in this article, but each of the four standards comes with the four subsets (Skills, Dispositions in Action, Responsibilities, and Self-Assessment Strategies) that broaden the standard, increase its relevance, and challenge school librarians to teach to the needs of 21st-century learners. It is true that each state has standards and benchmarks and many local districts have their own standards as well. But, L4L is an attempt to create national standards so that all students, no matter where they live, become accomplished learners and are prepared to meet 21st-century challenges. A close look at the AASL "Standards for the 21st-Century Learner" reveals that state benchmarks can be aligned with the Skills, Dispositions, Responsibilities, and Self-Assessment Strategies found in each L4L Standard. In order to bring these standards to life in schools, they can't be viewed as "one more thing that has to be done." The authors contend that by communicating with administrators, collaborating with teachers, sharing information with parents, and working with students, with the L4L standards always in mind, the learning goals for students can be reached. (Contains 6 resources.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A