Problem finding and problem solving

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Some Simple Techniques to Turn Learning Over to the Students

In a very busy couple of months, I am seeing sharp lines between the way I "teach" and the methods of, perhaps, more traditional instruction, be it with children or adults. The lines grow brighter as I get to observe in classrooms and workshops.  One element keeps popping up: why do you, the teacher, have [...]

Is Dissonance An Enemy or Driver of Creative Problem Solving?

At the very core of learning, I believe, is the recognition that “I” have a problem I want to solve. Lacking that, we are engaging in exercises placed upon us by some external force, exercises in which we either have no stake or do not understand the stakes. For decades I have believed that at [...]

All Saints Honors College Sets a Bar

I love working with students!  Yes, most of my work these days is with adult educators, but I am in my personal teaching wheelhouse with high school students. So I was truly honored to be included on the list of visiting scholars in the inaugural year of the Tad Bird Honors College at All Saints' [...]

Reflection On Comfort From #FUSE14

There is passion, noise, and emotion in the room here.  There is learning.  People are pumped with the range of possibilities they are uncovering, their heads pushed in somewhat new directions. There is also discomfort here. Some are past the edge of their comfort zone, probably not radically so, but past it nonetheless.  What will [...]

Questions/Feedback I Will Share From #FUSE14

As an observer-reporter-connector at large for #FUSE14 this coming week, I will try to flesh out some of the larger meanings and lessons, particularly for those who are not able to attend in person.  A foundational skill of great thinking is asking questions, especially the kind of questions that expand the framework of possible outcomes.  As [...]

First Of Many #FUSE14 Posts This Week: Welcome to Design Thinking

One of the premier opportunities for K-12 educators to learn about and practice the power of design thinking takes place this week in Atlanta, and I am honored to be invited to attend as a sort of “reporter/connector-at-large”.  From now through June 26, my blog will be focused on #FUSE14; during the actual conference June [...]

Balancing Academic Freedom and All-School Vision

What is the balance between academic freedom for teachers to choose their own pathways in their own classrooms, and ensuring a strong collective all-school vision? How does the effective leader find this balance? Many (most?) teachers are extremely protective of how they choose to carry out their role in the classroom.  In both public and [...]

Warren Berger’s “A More Beautiful Question” (Thx to Alyssa Gallagher)

For the first couple of chapters of Warren Berger's wonderful book A More Beautiful Question, I was selfishly angry and jealous.  So much of his writing seemed straight out of my own mind and thought process, starting nearly three decades ago; why had I not written this book myself? Why did I not have the [...]

How Might We Change Our Schools…in 10 Minutes?

I have never visited an educational institution more steeped in tradition than the US Military Academy at West Point.  The Academy is a keeper of traditions of which all of us would be proud, and that many of us would do well to emulate.  But, over the several years that I have worked and visited [...]