In January of 2012 I wrote a blog post titled, “The 20% Project (like Google) in My Class”. It has lead me to fully embrace 20% time in education, and I’m currently writing a book on the topic. We have such a great community of teachers that are now doing “20% time” or “Genius Hour” in their classrooms. This is a huge passion of mine, and something I believe has the power to transform our current system of education. If you’d like to learn more about 20% Time in Education, check out these resources.
We’d like to spread the “20% Time” message to the masses this summer. Sign up for the 20% Academy taking place online this July. We’ll be covering inquiry-driven and user-generated research (and practices) while each member of the class completes their own 20% Project. I’m super pumped to see it in action! Also, if you’d like to help in the planning of this project please email me before June!
In January of 2012 we started a “group blog” for teachers and educators. The purpose of this blog was to have authors from all parts of education share their unique perspective. Right now we have students, teachers, professors, administrators, consultants, and parents writing for our blog. Each month we cover a different topic in education, and we have published four eBooks as of April 2013. Check out EducationIsMyLife.com and be inspired by these great writers!
As a staff developer I realized that many teachers don’t communicate or collaborate with other educators. Sometimes they’ll talk to a peer down the hall or in their department at school, but rarely do they venture out into the world and connect. Twitter changed all of that for me, and it has made me SUCH a BETTER educator. My community of peers has inspired, motivated, and challenged me to really care about students and innovate in the classroom. The “Summer of Twitter” Challenge is a way for teachers to get started with Twitter over the summer. In an easy to follow 7-step program, each teacher will reach out and connect with educators from around the world. Check out the wiki here.
In 2008-2009 a group of students in my 10th Grade English class asked the question, “Why do we learn about all of this stuff (genocide and human rights violations), but never do anything about it?” This question sparked an idea and Project: Global Inform (PGI) was created. The students picked their own groups and researched current human rights violations. Each group picked a violation they felt particularly passionate about and began to develop an action plan. Their action plans allowed the students to judge how effective each method of media was at spreading information and creating awareness. At the end of Project: Global Inform’s first run, hundreds of people had been met face-to-face with information they did not know, while thousands of other teens and young adults saw videos, visited websites, and became Twitter and Facebook fans of media meant to create awareness.