“American Schools Are Training Kids for a World That Doesn’t Exist”

world doesnt exist According to Edwards, “We ‘learn,’ and after this we ‘do.’ We go to school and then we go to work. This approach does not map very well to personal and professional success in America today. Learning and doing have become inseparable in the face of conditions that invite us to discover.” Edwards posits that the key change we need for our students and ourselves is renewed focus on discovery wherever we find it and learning by doing.

“Veteran teacher turned coach shadows 2 students for 2 days – a sobering lesson learned”


Alexis Wiggins shares the self-proclaimed terrible mistake she made – waiting so long to shadow students at her school. Wiggins shares her experience of seeing the school day through her students’ eyes. She has three key takeaways and many changes she would make in her classroom immediately from developing empathy with students


Have you shadowed a student at your school for a day?

“A Lesson In How Teachers Became ‘Resented and Idealized'”

teacher wars

“A Lesson In How Teachers Became ‘Resented and Idealized'” by Dana Goldstein on NPR discusses the controversial role of teachers and their close connections to the development of social movements over the last 200 years. She also highlights the importance and value of keeping innovative educators in the field – we agree!

Her book, “The Teacher Wars: A History of America’s Most Embattled Profession,” was just released on Tuesday.

“Innovation Requires a Little Crazy”


MIT has a reputation as one of the most innovative higher education institutions; it is continually pushing to reinventing itself. Here are the key ingredients for innovation in higher education according to MIT – a few are “a willingness to take risks, to try something ‘crazy,’ to learn from failure and keep going” What’s the last risk you took to learn?

“Data Challenge Invites Hackers to Help Enhance Education Policies”

edu hackers

If you’re not directly involved in schools or innovation, you can still help shape education innovation. 60 civic hackers, developers, and students are working on the Mass EduData Challenge in Boston. Parham, Government Innovation Officer for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, shared school data with those he believes are most suited to analyze it — hackers. “We can leverage the insights and skill sets of the folks in our extended community who are, first of all, very passionate about civic innovation and, second of all, they have specific skill sets, whether it be in application development, user experience design, data analysis, or visualization,” Parham said.

“Educational Technology Isn’t Leveling the Playing Field”

matthew effect kids in lib

Researchers are beginning to document a digital Matthew Effect (the tendency for early advantages to multiply over time) in regards to learning with technology and the achievement gap. Access to technology alone does not level the playing field – it’s guidance and scaffolding by adults or mentors that really lead to meaningful educational gains with technology. Annie Murphy Paul thinks we need a focus on people and training to provide support above and beyond access for low-income children. What steps should we take to ensure technology is not widening the opportunity gap for our students?

“Why Public Schools Struggle to Innovate”

michael horn

Michael B. Horn writes about how public schools have some unique challenges to solve the innovator’s dilemma – how you prioritize innovation that will disrupt the current student experience to drive improvement. Political leadership, varied stakeholders, and limitations on change have an impact as well as the fear of failure in one of our most important social institutions. What is the cost if we don’t innovate and learn from our failures?