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Our Canadian Editor, Brenda Dyck,
invites you to begin your learning activities with the Big Rocks...the
essential ideas that lead to profound learning. We invite you to
help us with our Rock Collection--documents, handouts, graphic
organizers, and other materials that will guide students toward higher levels
of learning. Send e-mail to Brenda Dyck
share your ideas.
This month, we begin with our
first Rock: Project Guidelines, a document that defines criteria for
implementing an effective collaborative learning project.
But what are the Big Rocks of
Learning? It all started with a story:
There was once a teacher who
wanted to teach her students to think. She filled up a glass container with
rocks...as many as it would hold...and asked the class, "Is it full?"
Without a second thought, they
all said, "Yes."
She then added some pebbles.
Next she asked, "Now, is it full?"
Only a few said "Yes" this time.
She carefully added several
spoonfuls of sand to the container. "NOW is it full?" she asked.
The students said, "No," but most
couldn't imagine how to add anthing more to the container...they were just
suspicious at this point.
They watched in surprise as she
added several ounces of water to the container. "What is the moral of the
story?" the teacher asked.
"You can always get a little more
done," said one student.
"There is no end to what you can put into something if you only try," offered
"Use little bits of time to accomplish big tasks," suggested another.
"Perhaps you are right," answered
the teacher, "but consider this: You have to put the big rocks into the
container first or the others won't fit."