Avoiding the Dehumanizing Effects of Personalized Learning

Audiences: All Audiences , Pk - 2 Teachers , 3 - 5 Teachers , 6 - 8 Teachers , 9 - 12 Teachers , ES School Leaders , MS School Leaders , District Leaders
Levels: All Levels

Session Description

We often believe that the more we individualize, the more personalized learning is. But it turns out that individualization can, in fact, have diminishing returns on learning that’s truly personal.

Over the course of the 75 minutes, I hope to demonstrate humanized personalization by engaging participants in a simulation of what it feels like in the classroom. I will teach participants like I teach my students: with an open-ended task. Through this task, they will see that it is their agency that creates points of convergence and divergence over the course of learning block and, in turn, helps them personalize the learning experience for themselves. We will discuss five myths of personalized learning, and how teachers and administrators can work together to avoid the dehumanizing effects of technology-powered personalized learning. At the end of the session, participants will create an action plan for implementing humanized personalization.

District Information

We are an independent school in the city of Chicago, serving a predominantly affluent community. Our youngest classes are greater than 50% students of color.

Paul France

Paul Emerich France is a National Board Certified Teacher in Chicago, Illinois. He currently teaches 3rd grade at the Latin School of Chicago, serving as Academic Chair and Co-Director of Latin’s Assistant Teacher Program. Before Latin, Paul supported the opening of four personalized learning schools in San Francisco, California and Beijing, China. Paul regularly contributes to publications such as EdSurge, Edutopia, and Educational Leadership. On his blog, Paul writes about personalizing learning through humanized pedagogy, advocating for mindful technology integration, social justice, and relationship-based learning.


Additional Resources

Why Are We Still Personalizing Learning if It’s not Personal? (EdSurge)

Is Standardization the Answer to Personalization? (ASCD)

Personalized Learning is a Problem of Privilege (EdSurge)

Personalized Learning Isn’t About Tech (Edutopia)

A Healthy Ecosystem for Classroom Management (ASCD)