Why Personalized Learning?
What is personalized learning, and what does it look like in practice? What are the core components of a truly learner-centered approach, and how do these translate into strategies to create this experience for learners?
The LEAP Learning Framework, which we've developed to guide our work, answers these questions. While personalized learning is gaining traction nationwide, there is still much confusing terminology surrounding it, as well as conflation with blending learning and other terms. For educators ready to embrace the concepts of personalized learning, there is a need for support in translating these concepts concretely into strategies. What does personalize learning look like in terms of teacher practice? And what is the student experience?
In developing the framework, we started by leveraging the strong base of definitions, guides and other resources already developed by experts across the country. We co-designed with teachers and school leaders. We worked directly with additional experts from across the country to generate and refine our framework and strategies. And we looked to learning science to back our assertions.
The LEAP Learning Framework is meant to support learning of all kinds, in school and out of school. We believe all learning should be focused on, demonstrated by, and led with the learner, connected meaningfully with mentors, peers and the community.
- Personalized learning is learner focused, providing opportunities that reflect an understanding of each individual’s needs, strengths, interests.
- Personalized learning is learner demonstrated, prioritizing mastery over seat time, and allowing learners to progress at their own speed based on demonstrated competencies.
- Personalized learning is learner led, empowering learners to take ownership of their learning, adjusting dynamically to their skills, curiosity and goals.
We know personalized learning is important to teachers. In a recent survey from the Gates Foundation, 86 percent of teachers said they are constantly looking for ways to engage students individually – so figuring out the best tools and strategies to personalize learning is critical.
Included with the framework is a growing sample of strategies for each core component, designed for school-based educators, to help them create a personalized learning experiences for their students. We plan to expand these strategies in the future to make them useful for parents, community organizations, and other stakeholders. View the complete framework and strategies here.