As some of you may know, I am what we in our district call a Learning Centre Classroom Teacher. In other words, ours is one of many open classrooms that accept visitors from stakeholders to come learn from and with our class as we venture through the landscape of contemporary pedagogy and learning. One of the things people are often struck by in my class is how we do ‘paperless’. My response has become a standard one:
We are paperless in the sense that students and I don’t use paper to submit and return assignments, but we use paper everyday in the process of learning, to collaborate and think. Paper is an absolutely essential tool for learning; we shouldn’t try to eliminate it just for the sake of it.
The most vital pieces of paper in our class are our individual sketchbooks, something I call the Thinking Book. Yes, we have smart phones; sure, we have iPad devices; and indeed, we have a few MacBook Pros. But, perhaps standing head and shoulders amongst the rest are our beautiful, hardcover sketchbooks.
Here are just a few pages from last year’s books. I find them so much more beautiful than ‘final product’ pieces of work.