Mar 16, 2013

RightShifting Learning

It is time to stop walking students backwards into the future.

It is time to shift from a 20th Century approach to an authentic 21st Century approach.

The Conceptual Age is upon us, yet the Industrial Age culture in education still sticks.
The need for 21st Century Skills are real and urgent.
Where is the Creativity, Collaboration, Critical Thinking, and Communication when students sit compliantly at a desk staring ahead at the teacher?

RightShift the classroom or mass obsolescence awaits students upon entering the real world.

RightShifting the Classroom - The 7 Shifts
  1. RightShift from individual learning to more collaboration 
  2. RightShift from conformity to more creativity
  3. RightShift from dependency to more self-directedness
  4. RightShift from compulsion to more choice
  5. RightShift from monolithic instruction to more differentiation
  6. RightShift from just learning outcomes to greater emphasis on the learning experience
  7. RightShift from rigid plans to more adaptation to learners' present needs
Start RightShifting. Start small. Start big. Just start. 


  1. Yes! Yes! Yes! John, These are reasons why we choose to unschool at home. What opportunities do you see in the classroom to make that shift?

  2. Yes! Yes! Yes! John, These are reasons why we choose to unschool at home. What opportunities do you see in the classroom to make that shift?

  3. So true...the system as a whole can see conformity as a virtue. You must hear Sir Ken Robinson speak sometime.

    1. Hi Denise!

      I am a big Robinson junkie! I think Agile in schools can move us from where are today to creativity thriving in schools. The great thing is that using Agile, it allows for emergent and collaborative creativity, where the ideas of each others combine into something bigger and different than could happen from just anyone student. Great teachers like you are the ones who will change the system. Keep pushing and to keep making it happend everyday. Keep Rightshifting, even if it is somedays all uphill...


  4. Hi John,
    I really enjoy to read your theory(ies). But this article is not "ready". IMHO. What is "RightShifting"? To understand your opinion, I have to know what it is. Will you PLZ give us some links to the sources where we can find more information about it?
    The above summarized ideas a very similar to Montessori Education ideas based on "Human Tendencies". Is RightShifting something like that?

    Thank you in advance

  5. Hi Pavel,

    Thanks fo writing. As these are just my thoughts, I am not sure what you mean by "not 'ready'" . Not ready to post, not ready to be adopted, not ready for....?
    Rightshifting is borrowed from the originator, Bob Marshall.
    It means moving towards something more effective. I think the moving toward is important, as, it is a constant movement, and a balance, from where we are today.
    My use of the word in education has some twists:
    1. A moral/ethical use - as in , it is just the right thing to do for kids. We owe it to them.
    2. A play on left brain/right brain. A shift from the left brain to right brain. To move to more social, emotional, and creative forms of learning.
    3. A shift in power, from the teacher to the student.

    I think the theories I discuss are nothing new, there are many books and research that state that this is what we should be doing. I think what is presented here that is new is what is left out, how they are combined together, and the inspiration of Agile development to operationalize these values and principles day to day for schools. I am a big man of Montessori!

    Thanks Pavel, I look forward to hearing back from you.



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John Miller