While there is a clear need to prepare our students to be successful in these rapidly transitioning times, our educational system is not keeping pace. All states, districts, and schools currently face the challenge of transforming their practice to prepare students for a global, 21stcentury. This qualitative, phenomenological case study compares and contrasts three California elementary schools' 21st century learning approaches to the Partnership for 21st Century Learning Framework. The schools were selected because they identify themselves as having a 21st century focus, have strong academic outcomes, and apply a specific and different approach to 21st century learning: design thinking, project-based learning, or world-language immersion. The study uses the 21st Century Learning: Site Visit Protocols and Summaries tool to gather data through semi-structured interviews and classroom observations. The principal and three teacher leaders were interviewed. The study was limited to three different elementary schools in California and involved interviews of nine teachers and three administrators. Participants were asked questions about their own organization and might have been subject to positive and/or negative biases, or to a particular image they wished to project. The researcher relied on school staff to provide access to what was occurring in the school and make available artifacts and data. The data from this study will provide examples of individual school's progress in the state of California, which is a state that has not adopted the Framework for 21st Century Learning. It is the researcher's goal that the information gleaned from the study findings will provide specific strategies that schools and districts can employ to prepare students to thrive in the 21st century global workplace. Study findings should be of benefit to teachers, school leaders, parents, and policy makers interested in moving U.S. education toward 21stcentury learning outcomes.