The S.O.A.R. Model for Student Porfolios

I work with a group of teachers and around 90 students in what can be described as a project-based program (though it really is much more than that). Now, as we finish our second year together it seems like the right time to suggest and propose a digital portfolio template for our students – one that will serve as an effective and malleable amplification of our students’ work and of their learning.

I propose a four-page portfolio that follows the acronym, SOAR. I also propose that each student’s portfolio be linked from our Mosaic website. Any website platform will work fine – no need to mandate one over another.

Here’s a brief description of the four pages. You can click here to look more closely at an example that I’ve created.

S :: Splash Page

This is the page that greets visitors to your portfolio. The purpose of this page is to answer this question:

What are you doing and learning?

Utilize any form of media … from text to video to scrolling marquee to help clearly communicate your answers to the above question.


O :: On Display

Think about how you want to display your work. What have you made that should be displayed to your visitors. A video? An image? A piece of writing? An animation? A game you programmed? This page is analogous to a museum display. What do you want to show at your museum (portfolio)?

portfolio - on display

A :: Archives

This page may not win any design awards, but it will require you to review all of your research and the information that you have collected and no doubt organized into Google docs and folders. Type and hyperlink text to link to a particular document or folder. For example:

Click here to access the MEMA folder. (hyperlinked)

This page is important because it makes it easy to view and access your material.

portfolio - archives

R :: Reflection

This page should be a blog template – one that will allow you to submit reflections of your work, curiosity and questions. A blog format will display your posts and include dates and categories. In short, this page will communicate your thinking.

portfolio - reflections

I think a portfolio similar in purpose and design to the one described in this post is an option that will encourage metacognition via intense reflection. Though in reference to Mosaic students, I think this idea should be considered for all students regardless of their high school pathways and post-graduation plans.

It’s too powerful to ignore any longer.

Click here to review a plan to implement SOAR portfolios with your students.