Starter Kit: Tips for starting

John Spencer in his blog considers content curation as a means of making student critical consumers:

Chefs enjoy great meals. Musicians listen to great music. Engineers make sense out of what other people have designed. The better they are at consuming, the more likely they are to be inspired to create something new. So, if we want students to be makers, we need students to be critical consumers.

Below, he gives teachers a list of 5 tips for starting content curation in the classroom:
Model content curation. Notice that few students walk into class with curation skills. We live in a consumer culture that values speed and amusement over slower, deliberate thought that is needed in curation. It’s not surprising then, that teachers often need to model the curation process.
Let students geek out. Curators are natural geeks. They get excited about ideas and topics within their domain. They engage in research in a way that feels like an adventure. If we want students to engage in content curation, we need to let them geek out. Tap into their prior knowledge and let them run with it.
Spend more time on it. Content curation takes time. Take a look at any master curator and you’ll see this commitment to time. There’s no way around it. If you want to see students curate, you have to carve out specific time for it.
Begin earlier. Traditionally, teachers wait until the end of the year to have students do research. It’s usually part of a multi-week project. If you begin at the beginning of the year, they will slowly learn the art of curation as the year progresses.
Let students own the process. They should choose the topics, the questions, and the sources they find interesting. This could connect to research, silent reading, blogging, or Genius Hour. It’s also important to let students choose the platform. Curation can happen in a journal or a notebook if they want to keep it private. Or it could happen in a blog, in a podcast, or in a video series. In some cases, visual curation sites like Pinterest can work for students who want to organize things in a spatial manner.



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