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Education is at a crossroads, and it’s becoming more and more clear that a full reimagination of school is now needed to best prepare our children for a fast-changing, globally-networked world of learning, work, and life. We discuss how these principles can provide a framework for educational change in your school.

Education is at a crossroads, and it’s becoming more and more clear that a full reimagination of school is now needed to best prepare our children for a fast-changing, globally-networked world of learning, work, and life. We discuss how these principles can provide a framework for educational change in your school.
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Education is at a crossroads, and it’s becoming more and more clear that a full reimagination of school is now needed to best prepare our children for a fast-changing, globally-networked world of learning, work, and life. We discuss how these principles can provide a framework for educational change in your school.




#74 – The Power of Learners with Sylvia Martinez

We're in our second week of exploring power and power relationships in schools which is a topic that I don't think we reflect on nearly enough in schools. (Here's the first "power" podcast with Rob Fried.) There's an inherent tension when it comes to learning and power, namely how much power do you as a learner have in any learning interaction to choose not just what you learn but how and where and when. And one of the things that casts such a long shadow over this conversation is the fact...


#73 – Power in School with Rob Fried

So it's a new month, and that means a new theme for our conversations, and it's a theme I've been looking forward to diving into, namely "power" and the ways in which power relationships basically define the schools we're in. Power is not something we often talk explicitly about in schools. It's a complex dynamic that is a part of almost everything we do, and it has a huge impact on any efforts we are making to change the experience of school for kids. And we are thinking about it...I mean...


#72 – Equity, Culture, and Community with Tricia Ebarvia

This is the fourth and final episode in our exploration of the theme community this month, and I want to say from the start, that this conversation you're about to hear on equity, community, and culture has been one that I've been struggling with recently. There are many challenges and tensions that we face in schools and education today, but none may be more complex than the one surrounding equity in terms of race and gender. There's no question that white male privilege is finally being...


#71 – Community as the Curriculum with Dave Cormier

So in case you may be new to the pod, each month we take on a different theme from four different angles, and this week, we're looking at our theme of community through our third lens, that of classroom practice. As in what would the classroom look like if the community itself was the curriculum? That's a question that this week's guest Dave Cormier has been grappling with for over a decade. His work around "rhizomatic learning" has generated a ton of new thinking about what classrooms might...


#70 – Virtual Community with Howard Rheingold

Welcome to our second podcast on the theme of "community." While the web has been around for about 25 years now, learning on the Internet really started way before the web was even in development. For those of us old enough to remember the days of computer modems and online bulletin boards, if you had the time and the money, you could connect to people around the world and learn all sorts of things through online communities that relied solely on in no audio, video...not even any...


#69 – The Power of Community with Peter Block

It's a new month as we turn into September 2019 and that means a new theme for our podcasts and for our conversations in MLC, our Modern Learners Community. Podcastwise, I'm a little sad that our dive into the theme of Story in August is over. What I've learned is that we tell stories in schools in more ways that we realize, and that the narratives that we create have a huge influence on how kids and teachers experience school on a daily basis. I really hope you enjoyed that series. But now...


#68 – Talking About Race, Culture, and Identity with Winona Guo and Priya Vulchi

This is the fourth and final podcast in our series on the theme of "story," and I hope you've enjoyed listening to them as much as I've enjoyed recording them. As many of my guests have expressed, we are in between stories in education, and this is both a challenging and exciting time for us as we grapple with the barriers to change but also dream about the possibilities of what we might create together. One aspect of the current story of schools that is especially important today revolves...


#67 – Creating a New Story of Learning With Mary Anne Moran and John Clements

If you listened two our previous two podcasts on the topic of "story" I think you'll agree that we educators are at an interesting spot when it comes to the way we think and talk about education and schooling moving forward. The old story that you have to be somewhere at a particular time with a particular teacher with a particular group of kids who are your same age from your same neighborhood to learn a particular curriculum at the same pace and be assessed the same way is breaking, not...


#66 – Futurist Bryan Alexander: Stories of Change

All this month in the community we're talking about the theme of story, how the story of school and education is changing, and what we need to do to help create a new story for teaching and learning moving forward. And so along those lines, in this week's podcast I interview long time blogger, author, and futurist Bryan Alexander to help provide some larger contexts for how life stories are changing in general and how we educators might help our students navigate the next 20 or 30 years of...


#65 – A New Story of School Based on Beliefs

Each month our Modern Learners Community (MLC) , we take on specific theme, and in August, our theme is "story." As in what is the current story of learning we are telling in our schools, how is that story changing, and what might the new story be? And so to kick things off this month, in this podcast I interview Stephanie Pace Marshall, whose life's work has been centered around the transformation of learning and schooling. She is the founding president of the National Consortium for...


#64 – In Search of Deeper Learning

Unpleasant Truth about Education #47: Kids learn more deeply in school when participating in extracurriculars than they do when being taught in classrooms. That's one of the many provocative conclusions drawn by authors Jal Mehta and Sarah Fine in their book In Search of Deeper Learning: The Quest to Remake the American High School. It's a fascinating in-depth look at how learning happens at three very different schools in the U.S., and it's also a primer on what we can do to bring more...


#63 – Gary Stager: “The Project Can Replace the Instruction”

For over 30 years, Gary Stager has been at the forefront of those arguing for a more constructionist approach to learning. In this podcast, he discusses the power and importance of letting students experience learning by doing in every interaction with school. Gary has been greatly influenced by the work of Jean Piaget, Seymour Papert, and many others. His keynotes and presentations around the world continually push people's thinking about the ways in which children and adults learn most...


#62 – A Truly Global School

A lot of schools tout a "global curriculum," but not many can say that they have a truly global campus. But that's what "Avenues: The World School" is building. With physical campuses in New York City and Sao Paulo, a Shenzen, China opening this fall, schools developing in Miami, Silicon Valley, London, and Mumbai, and now an online campus for grades 6-12, Avenues may be the first school to truly span the world. In this podcast, Tim Carr, Co-Head of the Avenues Online campus not only...


#61 – Creating a Different School Experience

Is it possible to create a different school experience? Given the chance to do things really differently in your school, what would you do? That's the opportunity that Peter Wieczorek has as the director of Northwest Passage High School in Coon Rapids, MN, a public charter school that is pushing the envelope when it comes to carving our new ways of preparing students for the world today. They are creating a different school experience! While a lot of schools are doing project-based learning,...


#60 – Diversity is Not the Goal

What if diversity is NOT the goal? That's the question that our two guests dive into in this our 60th episode. Bruce and I chat with with Homa Tavangar and Eric Dozier who are collaborators at the Oneness Lab where they "seek to discover, learn and live models of cohesion and unity, toward building a better world." Together, Homa and Eric help schools and organizations "unlock mindsets that are truly global" in order to build our collective capacity to have the "social-emotional skills...


#59 – Stephanie Rogen on Creating Schools That Thrive

In this episode, Bruce and I chat with with Stephanie Rogen, author of a great new book titled "Creating Schools That Thrive: A Blueprint for Strategy." Like the title implies, it's a roadmap for schools who are on a journey to create mission and vision driven change that's relevant for modern times. Stephanie's work with schools around the world is deeply focused on the importance of common language, how to utilize design thinking in a change process, and how to build cultures that support...


#58 – Author Rich Halverson on Rethinking Education

Education is changing, and schools are still struggling to adapt. That's the key takeaway from this interview with Rich Halverson, co-author of Rethinking Education in an Age of Technology which just came out in its second edition. First published in 2009, Halverson's book is one on the most underlined and dog-eared of all of the books on my shelf, and after listening to this podcast, I think you'll have a pretty good sense of why. In this podcast, we talk about the good and bad of...


#57 – Announcing the Audit

Our recently released 10 Principles for Schools of Modern Learning whitepaper provides a synthesis of the unique characteristics of schools from around the world that have taken on high-bar change initiatives responding to the new opportunities and challenges of learning in the modern age. Since its publication, the white paper has been downloaded by over 10,000 people who are using it as a way of starting conversations and as a framework for their change efforts. Now, we’ve introduced a...


#56 – Megan Power on Creating a New Experience of Learning

Given the opportunity to start a new community public school from scratch, what would you build? What process would you employ? And if you really wanted to create something really different, how would you convince parents that really different is not something their kids need but also something they should want? Those questions and more are the core of this fascinating conversation with Megan Power, co-founder and designer of Design 39 Campus, a four-year old public K-8 school in the Poway,...