Open Note, Open Book, Open Screen 

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There's the traditional testing model for measuring whether or not your students are learning what you teach. It goes something like this: study, memorize, pass the test. Of course, during the test, students aren't allowed to reference the materials because that would be comparable to giving them a "cheat sheet," right? And would it tell you anything meaningful about what they've actually learned if they had the answers right in front of them? You'd be surprised at the answer.

That model, we'll call the “closed model,” is a fine tool in and of itself for measuring whether or not students are reading and memorizing basic information. But when it comes to teaching the complex, disparate skills needed to be a productive student and proficient writer, its effectiveness starts and ends about there. 

At WWD, however, we have a different philosophy. And it looks like this: open note, open book, and open screen changes the game. With it, you're able to evaluate the progress of your students in a different way. On the one hand, you can have a better understanding about how they learn (and what works best for them), but also their abilities at simply searching for information. And in today's world, you probably know how critical that skill can be.

Think of it as a discovery tool... it gives you a chance to look at their process for locating relevant information within a body of text and linking it with a particular set of questions. By having this perspective, you can then teach them more effective strategies for how and where to look up information so that their interaction with the material itself is more memorable and natural for them.  

It may seem counter-intuitive at first, but an open book approach can give you the opportunity to improve your students' study skills as well as produce a deeper, more genuine retention of the curriculum than a simple closed book test.  And they'll be better writers for it.

Interested in trying out a different approach to writing in your class room? Get in touch with our staff to find out just how transformative Writing with Design really is!