Invitation for Innovation #IMMOOC

I recently began blogging. In fact, this will be my third post. I am looking forward to reading all of the blogs related to The Innovator’s Mindset Open Online Course. #IMMOOC  I also appreciate having this opportunity to help me create a cadence of accountability in my blogging journey. One of this week’s blog prompts is “Why is innovation in education so crucial today?” Right away, I think about my two school-age children. My daughter is in 3rd grade and my son in 1st. My daughter loves everything about school- even the worksheets. She comes home from school and plays school and she is really good “doing” school. When my son became school age, I had a huge wake-up call. All of a sudden all of the things that I appreciated about him so much were almost working against him in the game of school. He wasn’t good at sitting still, he loathed worksheets (especially filling in a 100’s chart daily in math), and never felt like he had enough “center” time. His curiosity, eagerness to move, and desire to create and play- all seemed like attributes that made it harder for him during his Kindergarten year. Thankfully, he had a wonderful, compassionate teacher that was open to dialogue about making some changes to help him be and feel successful.

In his Introduction, George Couros referenced the video “An Open Letter to Educators” featuring university dropout Dan Brown. Brown said, “You simply need to understand that the world is changing, and, if you don’t change with it, the world will decide that it doesn’t need you anymore.”

It got me thinking, are kids deciding they don’t need school anymore? And if they are deciding this, are they in some cases correct in their thinking? We are blessed with having the world at our fingertips. All it takes is a cell phone and a google search, and I can teach myself to do almost anything that I couldn’t do before. My six year old son knows how to use Siri to search and loves watching kid created video tutorials. In the video below he is describing what he purchased while we were on a vacation. He forgot one of the names of his cars, and instead of getting frustrated, he simply states that he will use his phone to look it up.


Do I believe that school should just be replaced by a search engine and we can all stay home? Absolutely not. I do, however, believe that as the world around us changes, we need to adapt to create a more meaningful school experience. School used to be one of the primary proprietors of knowledge. I wonder what school would look like if it were the primary place to collaborate, create, and pursue passions for adults and students? There are many teachers and leaders in many schools pursuing this. Little by little, we are re-imagining and re-focusing our efforts to reflect what our students and our world needs. As the world changes, we are being given a continuous invitation to innovate.


5 thoughts on “Invitation for Innovation #IMMOOC

  1. Thank you for jumping into the world of blogging and sharing your own kids’ learning stories! It is so important to continue to recognize that learning looks and sounds differently than it did in the past and it looks differently from one student to the next. One of the things I appreciate most about participating in #IMMOOC is reading the other participants’ reflections!


  2. Hi Jillian! I just wanted to say hello as a fellow music teacher in the #IMMOOC – I’ll be posting my blog soon 😉
    I really liked your question about students deciding they don’t need school…I asked all of my instrumental students last week (4th-5th grade) to tell me 3 things they want to learn, and it didn’t have to do with music. One told me there was nothing in school he could learn until high school, because he already knew it all. That made me so sad! I am making it my mission to not only teach that child something (which I will, he knows nothing about the cello!) but also to help him find things he can learn in school.
    I look forward to learning with you during the next 6 weeks!


  3. I too am new to the world of blogging, and I feel very vulnerable doing so. I appreciate educators, like yourself, who are also going out on a limb and taking risks. People like you inspire and encourage me! Thank you!


  4. After listening to Jo Boaler in the IMMOOC tonight, I am making a connection to your blog post. She was talking about how, when teaching traditional math, we are training kids for jobs that don’t exist anymore. I see my own teenagers using technology to produce amazing, creative things on their own time but not even thinking to incorporate those tech tools into their school life. Hopefully when your kids move into high school, they will have the chance to embrace their tech in their classrooms!


  5. Thanks for posting! I relate when I see my own 7 year old ask Alexa (our Amazon echo) how to spell or answer a complicated math problem and she briskly answers. We in some ways no longer need “human computers” but we will always need the human element of creativity and critical thinking.

    Liked by 1 person

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