As the education system changes and young adults are increasingly expected to be independent and prepared to jump right into new challenges, traditional teaching methods don’t do enough for personal development.
Beginning in September 2017, Rosseau Lake College is implementing Discovery Days, an innovative approach that allows students to develop important skills and realize their full potential independently.
Discovery Days will occur every Friday during the school year and transform the timetable into a student-designed day that allows for non-traditional learning. Rather than going to their regular classes, students will work on longer-term projects and have access to different learning spaces that allow for successful completion of those projects.
Through this process, students will have the opportunity to inquire, explore and investigate the world around them, providing critical decision-making abilities and developing personal skills that will set them up for success in postsecondary education and their careers.
The Discovery Days philosophy focuses on three stages of learning:
- Design Time: Students will work on Discovery Projects, including lab work, studio work, group collaboration and presentation tasks.
- Flex Time: Students will have the chance to work on passion projects of meaning to them to develop their own interests, hobbies and personal skills.
- Active Time: Students can enjoy learning outdoor skills, become involved in clubs, participate in athletics and attend Indigenous workshops.
Part of the Discovery Days development will include the creation of a new MakerSpace, and students will be encouraged to utilize the full wealth of resources available at Rosseau Lake College. They will get out of the classroom and move around campus to the venues that help them achieve their personal goals.
Teachers will take on a facilitator role in this new system, giving students the opportunity to engage and interact with faculty with whom they might not have classes. This will allow for students to seek out peers and faculty with similar interests and collaborate, build together and fully realize their passion. Passion projects, worked on during flex time, won’t even be graded – they are strictly for personal development and the opportunity to see a project of interest through from start to finish.
As changes continue in education, business and everyday life, gaining these personal leadership, project management and organization skills are crucial to succeeding in a globalized world that places greater emphasis on independence and self-starting.
Getting a jumpstart on personal development and independence will provide greater skills at the university level and as graduates begin their careers.