Seventh graders have an opportunity for real world problem solving in a common core classroom thanks to the Learner Active Technology Infused Classroom (LATIC) initiative.
In Watchung, NJ science teacher Kristina Franko and seventh grade social studies teacher Chris Mehl presented the initiative to the Board of Education. The inter-departmental initiative combines the Common Core curriculum with real world problems. The problems cannot be solved by Googleing a solution.
Teachers focus on problem based tasks, creating individual and group activities. The process encourages the students’ abilities in collaboration, creativity, and creitical thinking.
In Mehl’s class, seventh graders applied LATIC to the study of the Black Plague. They tackled required reading, and designed ways to show how it spread through studies of geography and history and government. They illustrated the exchange of body fluids by pouring pink liquid into clear cups. After the study was finished, Mehl posed the question “You have a pandemic in your town. What do you do?”