Searching for Meaning Using Interdisciplinary Learning
2nd in a series of 3
Education is a wondrous world of discovery. Imaginations soar and curiosity is piqued when schools offer meaningful, engaged learning – learning that is deeper, more flexible, and with more interconnected curriculum. Interdisciplinary teaching and learning is a way to do just that. Teachers at Oak Hill Academy in Lincroft, NJ regularly practice this technique when building lessons.
In interdisciplinary teaching and learning, students combine learning from multiple disciplines to come up with new ways to think about issues and solve problems. Writing, reading, and reasoning are combined from all academic disciplines. Schools must let children tackle problems that don’t fit neatly into one subject instead of taking what is presented at face value. This then allows students to synthesize multiple perspectives. Naturally, students draw from their own experiences, interests, and natural curiosities. Much of the power of interdisciplinary learning lies in how it teaches students to think and make connections.
As students become mature learners, they should be able to evaluate complex information to come up with their own ideas and perspectives – also known as critical thinking. Interdisciplinary learning supports critical thinking by helping students understand multiple viewpoints, evaluate conflicting perspectives, and build structured knowledge.
The results are very clear. This type of learning allows students to understand how and why things work the way they do, identify the steps necessary to arrive at a solution , and solve complex problems that don’t have clear answers. Comfort with uncertainly and ambiguity is built into the fabric of interdisciplinary learning, where students constantly analyze multiple, sometimes conflicting, perspectives. Rather than just learning facts, students are exposed to “productive struggle” which ignites a passion to study more and in greater depths. When schools hold students to a high rigor, the schools send the message to its students that they are capable of and deserve opportunities to master at higher levels. The problems students will be asked to solve in future jobs, communication, and college courses will be interdisciplinary, so let’s prepare them now for this future.
Oak Hill Academy is a NJ private school that is co-educational, independent, nonsectarian, and nonprofit for grades pre-kindergarten through eight. Oak Hill Academy is dedicated to a traditional, challenging, and caring learning environment that encourages comprehensive thought processes and deep understandings; thus promoting the wholesome intellectual, emotional, moral, and physical lifetime growth of our students. If you want to learn more about what makes Oak Hill Academy one of the best private school in NJ, visit us online at www.oakhillacademy.com , or subscribe to our mailing list to be notified when we post more topics.