Polaris

Expeditionary Learning School

Portfolios

Digital Portfolios are utilized by students to archive and display their work at the secondary level.  Secondary students new to Polaris would benefit from knowing that we archive almost every assignment through Google Classroom, and these documents can then be used within one's digital portfolio. Not only do we want students to track their growth, but students never know what could come in handy in their portfolio.  Students use strong products, as well as ones they struggled with to show progress.  Students write descriptions for these artifacts so that anyone that looks at the portfolio can understand how it represents authentic  learning.  Students organize their portfolios by selecting several Global Learning Targets to act as a foundation, the number of Global Learning Targets to reflect upon will vary according to grade level.  The ten Global Learning Targets are as follows:

Depth of Knowledge:  I can demonstrate grade level mastery of core academic subjects such as English, world languages, the arts, mathematics, science, and social studies.  I can also apply my knowledge of core subjects in order to understand global, financial, civic, health, and environmental information and issues.  

Career Readiness:  I can use life skills in order to be an effective learner, worker, community member and citizen.   These life skills include: adaptability and flexibility; self-direction, initiative, perseverance, and resilience; productivity, time and project management; social and cultural skills; leadership, civic responsibility, responsibility to others; hope, optimism and healthy risk-taking.

Civic Engagement and Service:  I can participate in community building, the political process, advocacy, education, or volunteering to make positive contributions to my school, the natural world, or the lives of others.

Communication and Collaboration:  I can communicate effectively.  This means I can speak, listen, read, write, and use technology in order to learn, express myself clearly, and solve problems.  This also means that I can collaborate effectively with others in order to maintain collegial relationships and reach shared goals.

Creative Process:  I can use masterpieces and models, experimentation, inspiration, practice, feedback/coaching, and the intentional honing of artistic/expressive/literary skills to develop beautiful work.  I can also explain the unique journey I have taken in creating this work and what I have learned in the process.

Critical Reasoning:  I can use reasoning to analyze, interpret, synthesize, and evaluate information, ideas, or literary works.  I can also make disciplined arguments that rely on credible evidence and/or rational logic.             

Information, Media, and Technology:  I can use technology to access, evaluate and manage information efficiently and effectively, to analyze and create media products, and to communicate effectively and ethically.

Innovation and Problem Solving:  I can use innovation and creativity to think in original ways.  This means I can reason, evaluate, create, revise, and implement new ideas as well as find innovative solutions to problems. This also means that I view failure as an opportunity to learn because innovation and creativity often happen in cycles of successes and struggles.

Leadership: I can guide myself and others toward a shared goal through a positive vision; utilizing the strengths, ideas, and contributions of others; exemplifying strong character and work habits; encouraging and supporting others; and using available resources in creative ways. 

STUDENT CHOICE:  In the spirit of critical thinking, collaboration, and ownership the Responsibility for Learning, the tenth Global Learning Target is left blank with the intent of inviting dialogue between teachers and students about additional competencies worth representing in an academic portfolio.  A good starting place for this dialogue is within a crew.  From there, it can be brought to staff and school leadership for consideration.