What is your definition of a great school? In his book, Milton Chen shares this answer from Paul Houston, the former executive director of the American Association of School Administrators: “Do students run into the school in the morning at the same speed they run out in the afternoon?”
I think this is an excellent definition, and a question we as educators need to ask ourselves everyday. Do our students run into our schools in the morning at the same speed they run out in the afternoon? Furthermore, do our teachers run into school in the morning at the same speed they run out in the afternoon?
We need to take a critical look at the learning we are actually providing if we want our students and teachers to exhibit such zest for the material. This is part of what Milton Chen calls the “Curriculum Edge.” The Curriculum Edge focuses on real learning and authentic assessment.
Through project-based learning and cross-subject integration, I believe we can create a curriculum that reflects the challenges of today’s changing world, and engages students in learning. What are your ideas for modernizing lesson plans and teaching strategies to achieve this? Comment on this post with your ideas.
And remember to join us March 22nd at the 21st Century Education Lecture to discuss these ideas and hear from Milton Chen about curriculum changes that have made an impact in other schools.