Innovation… failure… risk taking… thinking outside of the box…not accepting the status quo… deliberation… collaboration… control over our learning spaces! Those are the ideas, concepts and goals that permeated my mind throughout the entire Educon experience last weekend (took me a while to process the experience because there were so many layers to it).
So it seems to me that our kids come to school ready to innovate… willing to fail until they are successful… happy to go outside of the box because of a discovery they may uncover… not just being obedient receivers of information… not passively sitting back while things happen to them... Our kids are active thinkers who don’t accept no when passion and interest is driving their learning. Unfortunately, somewhere along the line, many schools end up squashing those qualities in our kids… we don't make them a priority... we don’t value them… we don’t assess them… we don’t see how they “fit” into the curriculum... we can't assign a number to creativity, innovation and disruption and so that means they don't fit in the current landscape of public education!
Well, what I realized at Educon is that these qualities students enter school with should be at the center of everything we do in our learning orgnizations… whether through 1:1 implementation or a BYOD program or wearable technology or conversations about project/passion based learning as the anchor for all classrooms… we have the control to empower our kids and facilitate learning experiences in our schools that value innovation, disruption, failure, risk taking, collaboration and thinking outside of the box just to name a few. We, as educators who are there to advocate for our kids, have the power to shift the focus from teaching to LEARNING so the qualities our children enter school with are nurtured and fostered because that is how our students will be prepared to go into the world and change things for the better.
This is what Educon meant to me. It gave me hope; it brought clarity to my vision for our school; and gave me access to like minded individuals who inspired me, stretched my thinking and pushed me further outside of the box! Thank you to Chris Lehman and the entire SLA family for hosting a most powerful learning experience!