Current Projects

By Teachers with Teachers

Collaborations to Design, Conduct, and Publish School- Based Research Relevant to Practice

Andrew Sherman presents at the National Association of Independent Schools Annual Conference on teaching compassion with Harvard – Universidad San Francisco de Quito – Avenues School researchers. The project was a product of action research at Colegio Menor Quito and led to the development of an.understanding on how an aspect of socio emotional learning, compassion, is learned through stages. 

A Dynamic and Effective Approach to Classroom Observations

At the Live Curious, Go Beyond Innovation Conference Andrew Sherman and Maria Jose Teran presented on the development of a learning observation APP that promotes frequency data on observable aspects of transformational learning and provides immediate educator feedback on student engagement aligned to a. set of indicators. 

Covid 19 and Education in Contemporary Society

Covid 19 is having a devastating impact on humanity. In a crisis of this magnitude, educators are learning to be resilient and to search for opportunities to continue teaching. The delivery of academic material and the notion of school remain relatively unchanged for centuries. However, a global pandemic is calling into question how schools operate. What will emerge after a couple of months of online education will permanently impact teaching and learning. We will never completely return to the classroom format as the exclusive space for the presentation of academic programs and will need to incorporate aspects of on-line learning into how we deliver learning activities.

School prior to Covid-19 was an institution in charge of delivering content knowledge. Schools presented themselves to the public based on the type of academic program  they delivered. With the pandemic, we have come to realize that content knowledge is in reality an open source document curated by educators. Educators around the globe share resources and teachers access ideas and design materials necessary to receive a quality education without being in a school building. Schools will need to deliver the best of both delivery systems: people connected campus experiences and access to globally networked learning communities.

Post-Pandemic Education 

The absence of personal connection in virtual learning that students are currently experiencing is an essential reason why schools exist and will continue to do so. Students miss their friends, their teachers, the collaboration, relationships  and communication that comes from face to face classroom and interactions on a campus. We have come to realize that so much depends  on the expression in the eyes of the other, the tone of their voice, how they talk through body language. Learning is an emotional experience and is easier when it is co-created in the interaction of people sharing a physical location. 

If schools exist to connect people, then what role does the online aspect play in learning? With so much available online, how do you choose what is important? Schools will need to curate the use of the immense amount of resources available. The resources selected will showcase what schools believe to be the best information to prepare young people for the future.  Instructional time is limited and the content is vast. What is worth teaching and learning? To prepare students for continuous change, schools should select content  that is trans-disciplinary,  relevant, engaging and  allows for working through that content  in a critical and creative fashion utilizing new pedagogies of learning that focus on  doing and reflecting. Even online synchronous activities are devoted to active learning. Teachers have learned to use break out rooms on zoom and adapt discussion and cooperative group strategies to the online environment.  New approaches to learning are being born out of the necessity to find novel ways to connect with students in a virtual learning environment.   Learning should address real life problems both local and global and allow  students to see they can make a difference in this world. 

While teachers are becoming more tech-savvy during remote learning, we will need to leverage this new knowledge and continue to use tools that we have learned how to use in the virtual experience when back on campus, we will also need to understand school is a place for making personal connections, learning to socialize, and develop interpersonal relationships. This human connectivity provides a nuanced understanding of life and allows us to see significance in the academic content that is shared, a computer screen and wifi will never be able to replicate this. 

EAV’s New Campus Inauguration!

Gamut Education has designed a contemporary and innovative school. It has features like the Maker Space and Learning Commons that enables interdisciplinary project based learning. Classes are structured in such a way as to allow teachers and students to engage in collaborative and applied learning. Systems of social and emotional support are valued and have been implemented. All this promotes deeper learning and allows students to excel academically and in non cognitive domains. Come to the open house on Oct 8th to learn more about the academic programming. Hope to see you there! 

Retooling School

Andrea Buffara, Chief Operations Officer of Gamut Education, recently published her thoughts on school start-ups, creating a long distance working partnership and the non-negotiables of student well being. Ms. Buffara mentions the essential importance of working holistically with young children and caring for the cognitive, social emotional as well as nutritional needs. This is especially necessary as young children are spending more and more time in school settings. Buffara also talks about being a digital migrant, but  demonstrates her ability to navigate electronic tools to manage from a distance a business as well as providing accountability for quality operations Gamut Education works with school start-ups and investors interested in the education services business sector.

 https://well-schooled.com/2019/12/retooling-school/

Becoming Future Ready…..

Andrew Sherman traveled to EAV this week and delivered a presentation to current EAV parents and prospective families on changes in the international education landscape and how to undertake a competency based approach where young people learn skills applicable to diverse academic situations as preparation to be “future ready.” The American School of Vitória is a leader in providing educational experiences embedded with these critical thinking and creative problem solving competencies. He visited classrooms and spoke to teachers, as well.