As a school we are working through the consultation for the school plan 2026, the vision for the next 5 years of education. Staff have been asked for comments and given the opportunity to take part in discussions that are intended to help form the vision for the next 5 years. I saw this as an opportunity to suggest that we embed FOSIL.
One of the questions we were asked is ‘If you were choosing a school for your child in 2030 what would it look like’. This made me smile because my comment when I heard about Darryl’s move to Blanchelande College was that I would choose a school because it had implemented FOSIL across the board.
In the presentation we were asked to consider the OECD’s future of Education and Skills 2030 project. If you haven’t come across this it is well worth investigating. Central to the explanation is the Learning Compass (OECD, 2018) which they describe as giving the students ‘agency; the capacity to set a goal, reflect and act responsibility to effect change. To act rather than be acted upon.’
Data and digital literacy is one of three core foundations and the whole compass of competencies is developed through a ‘cyclical learning process; anticipating, acting and reflecting’ (AAR). I wonder if this is beginning to sound familiar? Apologies if I’m teaching my grandmother to suck eggs but I didn’t come across any other mention of this on the forum.
The Anticipation part of this process is going further than Connect. ‘Anticipation requires more than just asking questions; it involves projecting the consequences and potential impact of doing one thing over another, or of doing nothing at all’ (OECD, 2019) which gave me cause to question whether this is a development of connect or something broader. Are we asking for a level of anticipation when students connect? Should they be anticipating outcomes or is this in danger of narrowing their inquiry? I like the idea of anticipation, particularly if it conscious, that is to say that part of the connect process is to exercise conscious anticipation and consider what students anticipate as being the outcome of their inquiry and how that might influence their investigation.
AAR is designed for a wider approach to education than teaching based inquiry, it seems to be an approach to action across students’ lives ‘A key aspect of the anticipation phase of the AAR cycle is the ability not just to respond to current events but to anticipate future events’ (OECD, 2019). However, it seems that there is a connection to be nurtured here and obvious parallels to be drawn.
The OECD state that the AAR cycle is a catalyst for the development of student agency ‘… defined as the capacity to set a goal, reflect and act responsibly to effect change. It is about acting rather than being acted upon; shaping rather than being shaped; and making responsible decisions and choices rather than accepting those determined by others.’ This idea brought to mind the discussions, held elsewhere on the forum, about ‘FOSIL is Learning by finding out for yourself (not by yourself, which suggests minimal or no guidance and/ or interventions’ (Toerien, 2021). I think there is a connection here; the agency to find out by yourself, to effect a change in your knowledge rather than having that change imposed upon you by a teacher who tells students rather than leads them to inquire.
I will certainly be using this as leverage, not only in my case for an apprentice (which I’ve attached here but have not had feedback on) but also as a means of influencing the school’s strategic plan and vision for 2026.