What Problems Do You Want To Solve?

As a little girl, my parents and teachers used to ask me “What do you want to be when you grow up?” Oddly enough, it was a paralyzing question. If everything is possible, how do you choose? How can you even choose what, when you don’t even know why? “What Problems Do You Want to Solve?” Refugees. Clean Water. Literacy. Poverty. Climate Change. Clean Energy. Trash in the Oceans. Air Pollution. Housing. Bees. War. Parking. Transportation. Depression. Cancer. Nutrition. Diabetes. Bullying. Etc. Etc. Etc. What if, instead of asking kids what they want to be, we started asking them what problems they want to … Continue reading What Problems Do You Want To Solve?

Power to your People

People are your school. People are the system. People make things happen. — George Couros, author of The Innovator’s Mindset Just as each leaf, each branch, each root and piece of bark contributes to the beauty of this tree, so does each member contribute to making a school what it is. Great schools not only draw out the best from their people, but celebrate their talents and encourage growth. Schools are full of teacher-experts: experts in their fields, experts in pedagogy, experts in collaboration or organization, even experts in some activity or hobby. Here are some thoughts as to how you can nurture those … Continue reading Power to your People

The Flipping Game

To game or not to game? To flip or not to flip? These are the questions of the week, and well, at the risk of being a COETAIL naysayer…meh. //embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js GAMES? Of course play is fun and engaging. I start most days with the New York Times Crossword Puzzle and a game of hearts is such a great way to hang with the family. For a quick fact-checking warm-up, a Kahoot! is fine. It resets students’ brains as they walk into the room and gets them excited to do some math. Kahoot!’s new feature of being able to download their results adds to … Continue reading The Flipping Game

We need to think differently

Problem Based Learning. Project Based Learning. Challenge Based Learning. I’m having an existential crisis. Questioning everything I do. Am I and my fellow math teachers still relevant? //embedr.flickr.com/assets/client-code.js This week’s readings got my head spinning and sent me on a mad web-searching frenzy. Who cares about rational functions? What even are rational functions? What is the purpose of education? What are they doing in Finland? Why do we still divide schools into subjects and departments?  We need to think differently. That’s the message I take away from this week’s readings. We. Not just me. We. Here’s what I know: I talk too much. I … Continue reading We need to think differently