Transformative Learning

Last week I had the pleasure of meeting with Robert Martellacci, Founder and President, MindShare Learning and discovered incredible synergies between the work that he is doing and how JA Canada is evolving. Following our meeting and fueled by the common ground, I made the time to read the C21: Shifting Minds 3.0 position paper this weekend.

This statement jumped out at me and inspired this post :

“The transformative view is that learning is a social process, with students and teachers working in partnership with each other and with experts beyond school, supported by digital technologies. In the transformative view, collaboration, creativity, innovation, entrepreneurial know-how, and ethical citizenship infuse teaching and learning. Students and teachers co-design their work. The learning environment, which extends beyond the classroom, is purposefully designed for students to think, research, analyze, develop and improve their ideas, and demonstrate deep understanding through the work they produce.”

This “transformative view” of learning experiences is exactly what JA creates with our most significant program: JA Company Program (Over a four-month period, JA’s Company Program teaches grade 9-12 students how to organize and operate a real business. Volunteers from the local business community work with students to launch and run a small enterprise. This gives students the real-world skills and experience that they need to uncover their potential.)

Achievers say that participation in Company Program provides a transformational event that alters ambition.*

I highly recommend looking deeper into the work of C21: Canadians for 21st Century Learning and Innovation, and consider having a closer look at the practical example of JA’s Company Program in creating the outcomes described as “transformative.”

* BCG Impact Study (2011) – for more information on JA’s impact.

Stephen Lippa, Vice President Education & Digital Strategy, JA Canada


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