Promisingness

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Promisingness

When we use creativity as a main constraint for decision making, we often end-up with a series of disconnected, incoherent ideas. When we use promisingness as a main constraint for decision making, we are more likely to find creativity as an emergent quality of our work.

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Playful Learning for Better Learning

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Playful Learning for Better Learning

Some of the more powerful educational experiences are those that tap into our natural inclination for play. Lifelong learners are those who have learned, first and foremost, that learning can be playful.

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Idealized Teachers Aren't Real

Idealized Teachers Aren't Real

Personifying idealized wisdom is a powerful way to make it easier to relate these ideas to our daily lives. Judging teachers by idealized standards of teaching, however, can be dangerous. 

Empowerment versus Deficit Models

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Empowerment versus Deficit Models

Operating from the empowerment model is powerful whether we work with teachers, parents, or even the students themselves (e.g. when encouraging meaningful project work). Sadly, many in the industry operate from the deficit model. 

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Reflective Practice

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Reflective Practice

Reggio Emilia teachers appreciate the importance of being a reflective practitioner, drawing on Schön's research. This describes the metacognitive layer of teaching, where an awareness of their own biases helps them be a better teacher.

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Using a Compass

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Using a Compass

The real world is not often as alien a landscape as the forest within which my brother and I were lost for over eight hours. But navigating the real world is often just as confusing and mysterious. Good teachers are a compass in that exploration.

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Open-Ended Project-Based Learning

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Open-Ended Project-Based Learning

Many discussions about project-based learning gloss over the fact that projects often become reduced to a set of unimaginative, banal activities. Copy, paste, print, glue. This does not make for meaningful exploration or learning. 

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Make It Visible

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Make It Visible

Reggio Emilia teachers specify three different things they seek to achieve: 1) make visible the way they are a teacher; 2) make visible the languages and intelligences of the children; 3) make visible the relationships in school. 

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Children Have Rights

Children Have Rights

We must believe in children as active, engaged, and fundamentally curious about the world around them. When given the opportunity, they are capable of remaining with questions and themes for several weeks at a time, and are able to work alongside peers and adults.