The Inspired Learning Project was pleased to welcome Elliot Washor, author of Leaving to Learn and co-founder of Big Picture Learning to our podcast series. Our conversation touched upon a wide range of topics including Elliot's own path as a learner, the formation of his original school, The Met and Big Picture Learning and what Leaving to Learn looks and feels like in practices. We also discuss the new MURSD Learning Adventure's project which just launched in November. We highly recommend Leaving to Learn as it explores the logistics of off-campus learning framed in 10 expectations that students have for their schools.
If you like what you hear, and we think you will, and want to read more of Elliot's writing check out the links below.
These pieces get to the heart of inspired learning and provide thought-provoking insights to reimagine school
Learning is a Lifelong Game Where the Score Doesn't Matter
The Time Has Come for Assessment that Matters
What Are We Losing By Keeping Learners On-Track?
Getting Centered by Going to the Edge
Our interview with Elliot is one of almost twenty author interviews, including conversations with Yong Zhao, Tony Wagner, Anya Kamenetz, just to name a few. Our full lineup can be found on YouTube by clicking here. We are also in the process of converting all of our video interviews into podcasts. Our interview on deeper learning with Harvard's Jal Mehta has been added and we'll update you as more are added to our feed.
The Inspired Learning Project and Nipmuc Regional High School are excited to continue its Inspired Learning Professional Development series aimed at connecting educators for PD focused on reimagining, redesigning & reinventing education. These workshops offer hands-on, low-cost professional learning opportunities that encourage collaboration and sharing of best practices.
Friday, January 3, 2020 (12-3pm) Leveraging the Educator Evaluation Process to Close the Gap between our Beliefs and our Practices Join leaders and educational coaches from across the commonwealth to learn about the ways Nipmuc Regional has leveraged the Educator Evaluation process to promote professional growth, reflection, and risk-taking through the creation of model SMART goals that are actionable, optional, and collaborative. Additionally, you will explore structures to promote educator reflection, streamline classroom walkthrough feedback, as well as write evaluations that are consistent, concise, and focused on celebrating success and encouraging continued growth. ($30 per attendee. Lunch provided)
Friday, February 7, 2020 (12-3pm) Sharing your School’s Story: Creating Transparency in the Journey to Reimagine School How do you share the stories of success within and beyond your school community? Capturing and sharing the journey as you reimagine school may be as important as the work itself. Telling new stories of learning is important as you continue to explore your beliefs and adjust the learning to align more closely with these beliefs. Join educators and leaders at this professional development to learn about the process, tools, and resources that help to make sharing your story visual and transparent. ($30 per attendee. Lunch provided)
Tuesday, March 3, 2020: 3rd Annual Inspired Learning Convention: “Telling Stories of Inspired Learning”
Join educators from the Mendon-Upton Regional School District and from across Massachusetts for a day of learning, conversation, and inspiration. This year’s convention begins with a keynote from educator, author, and nationally syndicated storyteller Matthew Dicks. The convention will also host Richard Byrne, educator and founder of Practical Ed Tech. In addition to the keynotes, the day will provide more than 40 workshop sessions, sharing relevant, authentic learning experiences that learners will remember throughout their lifetime and bring back to their classrooms and school communities. (Visit the 2020 Inspired Learning Convention page to submit a proposal or to register for the Inspired Learning Convention 2020)
Friday, March 13, 2020 (9am-1pm) Innovating Authentic Learning: 21st Century Learning Conferences (Inspired Learning Days) Looking to connect your classrooms with the community? Interested in partnering with professionals and community leaders to engage your students? Hoping to increase student agency to make students leaders of their own learning? Join us on March 13 to learn about how Nipmuc uses 21st Century Learning Conferences (Inspired Learning Days) to answer these questions and more. Participants will learn about this scalable model and focus on actionable ways to adapt the model for implementation in their own classrooms. Participants will also be invited back to Nipmuc on April 15, if interested, to see our 21st Century Learning Conference (Inspired Learning Day) in action. ($50 per attendee. Breakfast and lunch provided. Teams encouraged!)
Friday, March 27, 2020 (9am-1pm) Better Together: Project-Based Learning & Maker Education: Inspired Learning is rooted in providing students with the opportunity to engage deeply with course content and apply their creative interests to design products that are personally meaningful. Designing these projects can sometimes feel like a daunting task for educators who can often wonder where to begin. Project-Based Learning (PBL) and Maker Education are two complementary approaches that provide a flexible structure to implement inspired learning experiences in your classroom or school. This session will provide educators with structures and strategies to begin planning their maker-oriented PBL units. Participants will walk away with the beginning of a new project and next steps to bring it to fruition. ($50 per attendee. Lunch provided).
Nipmuc Regional High School is located in Upton, Massachusetts - minutes from the Mass Pike and Route 495. Get directions here.
Questions? Email John Clements (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Mary Anne Moran (email@example.com), Co-principals, Nipmuc Regional High School.
Imagine that you had the opportunity to build a new version of school that was different by design. Where would you begin in your exploration, planning, and research? What decisions would you make about curriculum, instruction, and assessment? How would you build a vision and cultivate a team of educators to join you on your journey? How would you reimagine learning spaces to align with your beliefs about learning?
In recent weeks, we had the privilege of connecting with Jennifer Young, a Principal on Special Assignment from the Mansfield Independent School District in Texas who has the exciting (and daunting!) responsibility of answering all of the questions above. Recognizing the imperative and possibilities of building a school of modern learning, Principal Young’s district asked her to lead this process for their community. Over the course of the year, she has been researching, reading, collaborating with her team, and visiting schools across the country to tap into innovative ideas about school redesign.
We were excited to meet with her at Nipmuc during her recent trip to Massachusetts. We’re even more fortunate to stay connected with her and to have the chance to follow her work to build a school that is different by design.
The questions, possibilities, and excitement for this challenge are endless. Enjoy the interview and check back with us for future interviews as we follow Principal Young’s progress.
Click above to share a practice that promotes student agency, ignites students' passions, or creates a bridge between classrooms & the real world.
Click above to nominate an educator to be celebrated by the Inspired Learning Project.