@TeachThought Day 20: Student Work Curation

The topic for today's post centers on student work curation. I like the archival connotation of the term curation, that is truly what we do (and/or have our students do).

My curation is usually results in hanging items on the wall in class and out in the hallway. I will also tweet and blog student work. The curation I would like to focus this post on is the student curation that occurs in my middle school.

The middle schools in my district have a very well-crafted portfolio project for the three years students are in middle school, thanks to our district's Language Arts teachers and Teacher Libarians. The program is called APT to Succeed--the acronym stands for the types of student work that goes into the portfolio. Students should have a sampling of Academic, Personal Management, and Teamwork artifacts represented. (We help students find examples for each of the three components.)

This impressive program has been well-honed through the years and culminates with a 8th grade portfolio interview with an adult member of the community in our Media Centers. Students create and revise resumes throughout their middle school years and are expected to write reflection statements for each item submitted into their portfolio. The Language Arts teachers in the district remain committed to the process and all other teachers are supportive. The ELA teachers even have the community members select students to "hire" and those students go into the 6th grade classes to present their portfolios and give advice.

I make time to regularly give students the opportunity to select work for their portfolios. I am clear with students that their "best" work might not necessarily be the assignment they earned an A on--they should focus on overcoming challenges, as well.  I do not choose which History assignments go into their portfolio, my students make those decisions.

Student curation is student ownership of work. #teachthought #reflectiveteacher

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