Bronston Teaching Learning Methodology
At B.C.A. our Teaching/Learning Methodology is based on the principles of Self Directed Learning, known to B.C.A. as “U Direct Learning”. At B.C.A. we believe that preparing students to gain admissions into university programs is half the battle. Preparing students with the confidence and critical thinking abilities needed to manage the coursework, learning environment at the university as well as meet dynamic expectations of their future employers, is vital to the academic and professional success of students. To this end, we employ the use of teaching/learning strategies that prepare our students for the task ahead.
“U Direct Learning”
Our self-directed teaching/learning program, known as “U Direct Learning” is based on the modern concept that students learn better in an environment where they are encouraged to play a major role in their learning process. The concept of self-directed learning is not new and has been explored by several educational organizations and educators, to achieve the best teaching and learning methodology possible. With the help of guidance counselling and teachers, our students play a role in course selections and strategies to achieve their academic goals. The teaching process itself allows students to fully participate in learning through ongoing research, self and peer evaluation, and mastering of coursework through our Academic Challenge and Student Focus program. The students are thus groomed to become young adults who have learned to take responsibility for their own learning, giving and accepting constructive feedback, as they move along the continuum of learning.
Through this process, students become proficient as self and peer, evaluators, noting their own knowledge gaps and learning to seek relevant and academic resources for learning, while teachers act simply as coaches, guiding the students along the continuum of learning, assessment and evaluation.
Assessment and Evaluation at Bronston
The Assessment and Evaluation process at B.C.A. ensures that our students are provided with ongoing performance evaluation through assessment of varying modes of assessments. (Assessment for Learning, Assessment as Learning and Assessment of Learning).
Bronston teachers develop their courses based on the expectations outlined in the Ontario curriculum and align their assessment and evaluation with practices described in the province’s policy document, "Growing Success".
Following the principles of Formative Assessment, teachers do not progress to subsequent lessons unless students have demonstrated a clear and consistent command of each subject area. In some cases, it may be necessitated for specific students to be provided with extra lessons and or custom time tables in order to successfully complete lessons.
This mode of Assessment and Evaluation allows for the academic development of each student. Assessment is therefore of the nature that results in teacher and student-designed interventions towards the acquisition of knowledge by both the student and the teacher.
This process often poses confusion and questions by students and their parents of what they know as traditional education. Traditional education needs reform and Bronston makes all effort to be a leading force in the process of change.
Within the framework of "U Direct Learning", Bronston employs a non-traditional classroom approach. An open concept which accommodates multi-grades in a learning hub. This provides a conference and meeting room style, where students and teachers meet with the goal of teaching and learning. This means that students may be teachers at times with teachers as learners or vice-versa.
At Bronston, we believe that the traditional classroom arrangement promotes an atmosphere of the teacher being the sole custodian of knowledge, with students the recipients listening to the teacher, often located at the front of the classroom, directing students through lectures and expecting students to regurgitate his/her teachings. This method of teaching, learning, assessment and evaluation, is not acceptable in today's world of technological changes, where knowledge is dynamic. Bronston employs all efforts to refrain from this rather resistive approach to modern approaches to knowledge acquisition and dynamism of technological development.
Bronston maintains flexibility in the process of curriculum delivery through a process that allows students to view lessons throughout the world around them.
"As detailed in an October 2016 Education Week article, this could mean taking a subject such as a climate change and addressing it through mathematics or biology, rather than sitting down to an hour of pure, abstract math. The open classroom concept thus fits neatly with an educational ethos that favours student autonomy and making cross-curricular connections, eschewing such internationally common assessment markers as standardized tests. Fitting such a layout to the teaching of a more obviously traditional curriculum might prove more difficult."
Our multi-grade classroom format is unique. This allows students from varying grades to learn together, sharing ideas from varying points of view. One of the very few numbers of schools employing this teaching-learning strategy, Bronston has experienced remarkable results!
"Learning in Places":
Central to Bronston's "U Direct Learning" is the introduction of students early to the principles of learning from varying places using varying academic, human, cultural and environmental resources etc. Students spend time in lectures, meetings and also outside the lecture and meeting format to integrate with the community in different places. Our students learn quickly that learning can occur anywhere outside the school's walls. Assignment of varying project work, encourage students to determine areas in the community where they can adequately collect relevant data to complete their project work for their portfolio and presentation. For example, for a history lesson about Hamilton, you may locate Bronston students on a boat tour along the Hamilton lake, instead of a traditional lecture session!
At Bronston, we focus strongly on digitalization through the combined use of computers, laptops, IPads, smartphones and Learning Management Systems throughout the teaching-learning process. Digitalization is ever so important to Bronston through its implementation of "Learning in Places", Multigrade and Open Learning Space facilities. With our digital classroom system, teachers and students login anywhere to maintain student-teacher communication, obtain assigned lessons and submit/present assignments and projects, etc.
See more about Self Directed Learning by the University of Waterloo.