Why good schooling is three Ds and an E | Zaprendo

Alan Wagstaff, 25 February 2016

Why good schooling is three Ds and an E

What makes a good school?

A simple question on its surface, but one that has the power to divide educators and overwhelm parents. Because what that questions is really asking is ‘what makes a good education?’ and that is a very big question indeed.

In more than 30 years as an educator and administrator, I have come to believe that this question can be answered with just one word: Engagement.
Many of my peers and other experts in the field agree. Again and again, engagement in education is often pointed to as the main difference between success and failure.

‘Enhancing student engagement has been identified as the key to addressing problems of low achievement, high levels of student misbehaviour, alienation and high dropout rates.’
– Ming-Te Wange, School of Education at the University of Pittsburgh.

And it’s not just about test scores.

Studies published in the British Educational Research Journal show us that engagement can be a better predictor of success in later life than test results. Regardless of background factors, positive school engagement is associated with students who achieve professional, semi-professional or managerial careers two decades later.

So, we know that engagement in school has the potential to impact a learner’s entire life. But in order to achieve this kind of positive engagement, a good school (or any good educational experience) needs to cover the three Ds:

Delight: a positive learning experience every day
Depth: activities that encourage willing and lengthy engagement
Duration: motivating students to keep on learning for as long as possible

With the three Ds in place, a learner will be more engaged and more likely to have rewarding learning experiences over and over again.

But what does this look like in practice?

Through years of academic research and classroom application, experts (notably among them Professor John Hattie) have found strategies to achieve delight, depth and duration work best when:

  • learners are given the structure and tools they need to succeed
  • learners are empowered to track their own progress
  • the lesson is designed for the learners’ specific developmental stage
  • interventions to find and fill learning gaps are made quickly and frequently
  • the method of instruction is clear, compelling and caring
  • regular feedback gently guides the learner on their journey

At Zaprendo, all our products are built on these principles of student engagement.

As passionate educators, parents and app engineers, we combine the power of technology with innovative teaching strategies to create the most engaging learning experiences we can.

Each of the learning tools we build is specifically designed to appeal to young people through a tech platform they know how to use and a method of instruction that is both enjoyable and effective.

As the saying goes, if it gets you young, it’s got you good.

The same is true of a good education.

Our beautifully crafted, interactive learning tools are specifically designed to stimulate engagement, and inspire a new generation with the joy of learning for life.

Zaprendo combines the power of technology with innovative teaching strategies to create educational tools that spark the joy of learning for life.

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