Curating Superpower Summary and Overview
The Curating Student Superpower emphasizes making meaning of the world, just like solving a puzzle. “Sources of information are vast and disparate, and individuals crave coherence and integration” (Gardner, p.46, 2008). It is no longer the job of a librarian to make decisions about information. Each student must know how to identify important sources. Students must be able to categorize what they find clearly, creating their own “personal library” from the mass of information available online.
Rather than being overwhelmed by the masses of information surrounding them, students need to be able to take control of what is available to them. Once they take control, students must categorize these new resources. Young children often do this naturally. “Celebrate, don’t censor or curtail the connections that are effortlessly effected by the young mind” (Gardner, p. 68). This ability is critical in developing a “synthesizing mind for the future,” which is at the heart of being a curator.
After categorizing, students must share their ideas and their collections with others, becoming budding experts and helping others. Marc Prensky notes in his book, Teaching Digital Natives (2010), that today’s students are actually researchers and curators. The authors of the Common Core State Standards recognize this as well, emphasizing the need for authentic research. When students become empowered by the curation process, it allows them to research, manage and share their understanding with the world.
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