Establishing Relevance in the Classroom, Strategies for Helping Students See The “Why” Of Learning

Helping students to see the “why” of learning

In a normal year school year educators often feel the pressure to help students prepare for testing and meeting state standards.  This leads us to focus the bulk of our time on helping them learn “what” they need to know about a subject and often we fail to effectively teach “why” this knowledge is important.   If students can’t see the “why” of learning the probably won’t see the relevance of school and how to connect school and future opportunities.  Focusing or relevance is the key to make learning meaningful!  

Now add the challenges of this pandemic, remote learning in virtual and blended classrooms, stress, anxiety and tension felt everywhere and students are struggling to meet state standards like never before.   Now more than ever we need to find that balance of combining the “what” with the “why” so meaningful learning can take place, even remotely!   The need for practical tools to connect, find relevance and engage students has never been higher!

Bruce Bushnell
Bruce Bushnell has centered his career around promoting youth success. He is an award winning school counselor. Bruce was named the counselor of the year for the state of Utah and was also honored at the White House, receiving national recognition for his counseling interventions. Bruce has been a member of the Executive High School Relations Board, senior vice president of the Alpine Counseling Association, and vice president of the Utah Counselor Association.
Bruce now helps youth succeed by presenting passionate WhyTry keynotes and trainings across the country. As an advocate of the program from its earliest days, Bruce has also been a key contributor in developing many of the WhyTry learning activities, which are proven to help youth develop the social and emotional skills necessary to reach their goals.
Cory Anderson
Cory has spent nearly two decades as an educator, beginning as a teacher and then as an administrator. He has been an assistant principal at a middle school and has served as a principal of two different elementary schools. Cory pioneered and started one of two public STEM programs in the state of Utah and helped consult with the state office of education on creating STEM standards for schools that would eventually be adopted by the STEM action center.
Also during his tenure as an elementary school as principal, Cory oversaw behavioral units and lead his school in implementing social and emotional programs and STEM activities.
In 2019, Cory joined the WhyTry team as a trainer and director of curriculum development, after using its social and emotional tools for close to ten years in his administrative duties.
Jason round small
Jason Johnson
Jason is a licensed school psychologist and has published research on resilience and student performance.  Jason is a passionate advocate for disadvantaged students and currently consults and trains educators across the nation as the director of training and research for the WhyTry organization. Jason is a thought leader on resilience education and has spoken at hundreds of conferences around the country. He has led successful implementations of all WhyTry programs and has pioneered trainings for clients in healthcare, corporate, and the US Military.

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Our online social and emotional learning curriculum can be taught in virtual classrooms. Help your students develop resilience in this time of crisis and isolation.

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