By now, the 4Cs–communication, collaboration, critical thinking, and creativity–are part of most educators’ vocabulary. But it isn’t always easy to put these concepts into practice, especially when the 4Cs can look vary depending on students’ age and ability.

At TCEA 2017, Donna Lusby, the K-6 instructional technology coordinator in the Lovejoy ISD shared how her district moved from what she characterized as “hesitant technology integration” to teachers embracing the 4Cs in their lessons.

“We discovered that we had the classroom access and teachers had the skills, but we were lacking in classroom use,” Lusby said. “Our instructional technology team analyzed the situation and discovered the district was lacking in the use of the 4Cs.”

So the team started with communication, and asked teachers to look at their lessons and identify just one element they could tweak to incorporate communication skills for students. Next, they did the same thing with collaboration, and continued with the other two elements.

Now, teachers submit their lessons for review by digital learning coaches, who then pass the lessons to content coordinators, who add the lesson to a website and link it back to curriculum, content standards, learning targets, and student examples.

Progress in developing the 4Cs will eventually appear on students’ report cards, Lusby said.

(Next page: 20 lessons using the 4Cs)