8 Essential Questions for Planning Personal Learning Experiences

How many times have you heard, “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail”? Most teachers are taught this mantra in their preparation programs and held to it over the course of their careers. It is expected (and in some districts mandated) that teachers write detailed lesson plans, gather resources, effectively sequence the learning, differentiate… Read More 8 Essential Questions for Planning Personal Learning Experiences

Empowering Teachers as Designers to #GoOpen

Traditionally, curriculum has been organized in a linear path that promotes a one size fits all approach to success.  When teachers are expected to follow directives, or implement programs without taking the context and unique individuals in their room into consideration, it often creates frustration because they see their students need something else, something different,… Read More Empowering Teachers as Designers to #GoOpen

6 Questions to Align Your Vision, Policies, and Practices

Establishing a shared vision amongst diverse stakeholders is critical when trying to implement wide-scale change. Cultivating a shared vision requires “practices aimed at identifying new opportunities for the school, and developing, articulating, and inspiring others with a vision of the future” (Ng, 2008, p. 5). When systems struggle to meet desired goals, it is often a result of… Read More 6 Questions to Align Your Vision, Policies, and Practices

Are You Trying To Solve the Wrong Problem?

I’ll never forget listening to a room full of high school teachers after interviewing their students. They were genuinely surprised and saddened as many came to a blatant realization: A significant percentage of their students are disconnected from their own academic experience and the reality of their not so distant futures.   Many of these teachers had… Read More Are You Trying To Solve the Wrong Problem?

Culture is Everything in Schools

I read this article recently, Workplace Culture is Everything: 20 Ideas For Building a Thriving Team. In the article the author describes two scenarios of workplace culture–one where workers are stressed and burned out and another where workers are empowered and inspired to create and grow. I love this description of a powerful culture: There is nothing more invigorating… Read More Culture is Everything in Schools