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Students Steal the Show @ULearnNZ; Best Conference Workshop Ever!

This is what PD should look all the time! We had some very active, noisy, collaborative workshops at ULearnNZ this week...and then there was the best conference workshop I have ever contributed to, and possibly attended.  Students from Hobsonville Point Secondary School gave up a day of vacation per the request of my co-presenters, Steve [...]

“Deeper Learning” Cheat Sheet; Feel Free to Share

For two years I have been collecting notes from blogs, books, school observations, and more discussions with more educator colleagues that I can remember or cite.  I keep hearing many of the same ideas about how to transform the factory model classroom into a deeper learning experience more relevant and attuned to the future needs [...]

By | 2017-07-28T15:19:39+00:00 September 12th, 2015|21C Skills, Innovation in Education, Uncategorized|3 Comments

Dramatic Change In Just One Year at Ortiz MS!

One year ago this week teaching and learning at the underserved, underperforming Ortiz Middle School in Santa Fe, NM was pretty much what you would expect: students lining up quietly in the hallways; sitting quietly in rows and pods of desks; completing worksheets; raising hands one at a time to answer questions or read a [...]

Must Must Read: Building School 2.0 via Lehmann and Chase

I can only wish I had the chops to have written Building School 2.0: How to Create the Schools We Need. I read a lot of books, many on the current state and future of K-12 education, best practices of organizational change and innovation, and the nature of creative individuals and organizations. I don’t recommend [...]

Fire, Learning, and the Spread of Knowledge

What can making a fire teach us about the nature of learning? I have had an ongoing dialogue with Dr. Adrian Bejan of Duke University, one of the preeminent scholars on the science of connectivity and flow through human, organic, and inorganic systems.  He recently sent me his latest article, Why Humans Build Fires Shaped the Same [...]

By | 2015-08-12T14:50:57+00:00 August 12th, 2015|21C Skills, Innovation in Education, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Two Ways to Engage Students in Deeper Learning This Year

Innovation in K12 education is about shifting our practice from a rigid, proscribed one-size-fits-all-every-year model to one that is more adaptable, flexible, and relevant to student interests and passions. As you think about the coming school year, here are two simple guides via @Edutopia to help shift your classroom practice towards a deeper learning student experience: The [...]

By | 2015-07-29T16:01:17+00:00 July 29th, 2015|21C Skills, Innovation in Education|0 Comments

STEM, STEAM, T-Rex, and Crows

One of the goals I see most frequently in school strategic plans in the last half decade is an increased focus on STEM courses.  The rationale is powerful: there is little debate that job opportunities in STEM fields will continue to far outpace that for students who have majored in the humanities. Recognizing, however, that creativity, perhaps [...]

Is “Community” the Glue of “21C” Education?

Is there, in fact, something different about the 21st Century that requires learning to evolve beyond what we have always known as timeless keys?  Charles Fadel, writing under the umbrella of the Center for Curriculum Redesign (HT Bo Adams for highlighting this piece), argues that there are several such unique driving factors: increased human longevity, global [...]

By | 2015-06-01T18:58:15+00:00 June 1st, 2015|21C Skills, Innovation in Education|0 Comments

A Mom and a Load of Cardboard

How might we engage community stakeholders more deeply in what happens at school? It is a critical question regardless of where your community lies on social and economic curves.  Take this short story I heard this week and translate it into something powerful for your school. We visited Vista Innovation and Design Academy this week. Last [...]