Critical Attributes of this Curriculum Project

Key critical attributes of this 21st century curriculum project:

1. Project-Based - students work collaboratively on a project driven by "Big Questions", identified problems that need to be solved or an idea or area of interest the students wish to explore.

2. Collaborative - students will be working collaboratively, in their own classrooms and with others globally, to conduct research, answer important questions, find and create information and knowledge, and create final student products.

3. Interdisciplinary and Integrated - rather than a fragmented curriculum, the disciplines and content standards are pulled from the overall project. The "Big Questions" guide student research, and cause a need for what the disciplines have to offer. The curriculum then becomes relevant, real-world and rigorous.

4. Authentic Assessment - products, performances, portfolios and testing are used to assess student learning. Their audience is the world.

5. Global Classroom - Connected to the Community - the classroom extends beyond the traditional four walls to encompass the entire community - local, state, national and global. Use of technologies and multimedia enable students to learn within an international, global community, learning how to work with people of cultures other than their own. This area also includes the important skill of learning other languages.

6. Technology and Multimedia - students use 21st century technologies to conduct studies and create student products demonstrating what they have learned. These technologies include wikis, blogs, email, Internet research, a virtual classroom, videoconferencing, and a variety to tools to create student-produced original films, documentaries, music videos, oral histories, photo essays and more.

7. Multiple Literacies for the 21st Century - incorporate important 21st century literacies such as Aural Literacy, Visual Literacy, Emotional Literacy/Intelligence, Ecoliteracy (environmental), Financial Literacy, Information Literacy, Technological Literacies, Multicultural Literacies, Physical/Health/Nutritional Literacies, Media Literacies and more.

8. New Paradigms for the 21st Century "School", "Learner", "Teacher" and "Curriculum" - See The 21st Century and Education.

9. Service Learning - a critical component, and the ultimate 21st century curriculum. Even kindergarten students can make a difference in their community by taking action. See video. In quality service-learning, the service project is designed to meet not only a real community need, but also classroom goals. By ensuring strong linkages between the service and the learning, students are able to improve their academic skills and apply what they learn in school to the broader community. Through service-learning, students demonstrate to teachers what they are learning and how they are meeting specific academic standards. See Service Learning.

Please view videos from the National Commission on Service Learning at You may also order these videos free of charge at