After reading George Couros’s blog On the “Real World”, which includes an amazing excerpt from an Alice Keeler post from 2015, I felt inspired. Alice sheds a new light on the ‘real world’ argument often given to or by teachers. George says that “you can use the ‘real world’ as an argument, but not an excuse.” I am going to go one step further here, … Continue reading The Ideal Real World
Wagner made me realize one of the reasons that I find these students so appealing – they cling to passion and play longer than most students. I have taught third and fifth grades, and most students have figured out how to play the school game by the time they have reached the age of 9. Young Originals, however, maintain their desire to find the humor and joy in the mundane. Continue reading Young Originals: The importance of passion and play, the challenge of purpose
We are constantly telling our children, our students, to prepare for the future, to stay focused on their work so that they will have the opportunities they deserve down the road. Yet, we also frequently think and want to say, don’t grow up too fast, cherish childhood before it gets away from you. So which is it, think ahead or be present? Continue reading A Learning Paradox: The battle of being present and preparing for the future
What are Young Originals? Inspired by Adam Grant’s best-selling Originals: How Non-conformists Move the World, I developed this term to identify the non-conformist students who occupy our classrooms every day. Continue reading The Young Originals: Non-conformists in the classroom
As teachers I feel like we often forget the fact that we are always leaders, whether we want to be or not. We look at administrators, teachers speaking at conferences, teachers who write books, as leaders. Yet, every day we have the opportunity to improve the life of a single child. In a school year, teaching 20-30 students for 180, we need to recognize that the opportunities for us to impact a child’s life are immense. Continue reading Freire was a real superhero
“I feel like genius hour may be more important than any of us think. If we only follow the standard curriculum and don’t explore learn what we want to learn and see who we really are, all we will be are a bunch of standard children and no one wants that.” Continue reading This is what Genius Hour means to students
This winter I heard the phrase, “What is your why?” for the first time. Of course, with most meaningful things, after you hear or see it once, it starts appearing everywhere. Most recently for me, it appeared in George Couros’s book The Innovator’s Mindset and Simon Sinek’s TED talk, How Great Leaders Inspire Action. When I look at design thinking, genius hour, problem-based learning, and most other innovative … Continue reading Truly innovative teaching asks, What is your why?