Future of Learning Top Reads for week of Apr 15 2019

“ ‘Homeschooling with Jetpacks’: Inside a First-of-Its-Kind Co-Learning Community,” by  in EdSurge News

“ ‘It’s like homeschooling with jetpacks,’ says Catherine Fraise, founder and executive director of Workspace. ‘I tried to think of every single way a human expresses themselves creatively, because I want every child to find themselves here.’ ”

Why does this matter to the future of learning?

“School” is one of the most powerful mental models we have. It’s so powerful, in fact, that we often fail to question certain assumptions; for example: school is a building (or campus) with classrooms; school is where teachers do the teaching and kids do the learning; school is where you enroll for a year (but that “year” is actually only 9 months, not 12…)

However, a nucleus of homeschoolers in Connecticut has escaped “The Matrix” that is the traditional school paradigm and created a new model:

“Fraise refers to Workspace as a ‘co-learning community.’ Similar to how WeWork is equipped with all the bells and whistles of a modern office environment—save for the employees—Workspace provides all the tools necessary for learning—save for the students. First and foremost, it’s a place for families that homeschool their children to come and engage with others, supplement their learning and dive deeply into a wider range of topics than most parents are equipped to teach themselves.”

“Founded in January 2017 in the small town of Bethel, Conn., Workspace Education is distinct from perhaps any other place of learning. The expansive building contains rooms themed around seemingly every pastime and passion imaginable: Theater? Check. Recording studio? Check. Wood shop? Check. Makerspace? Community garden? Costume shop? Virtual reality suite? Fitness center? Science lab? Industrial kitchen? Space station? Robotics room? Check, check, check and more checks.”

Before something becomes mainstream, it appears on the fringes. What can typical schools learn from this new model?


“Things I’m Pretty Sure About,” by Morgan Housel, on the Collaborative Fund blog

“There’s more to learn from people who endured risk than those who seemingly conquered it, because the kind of skills you need to endure risk are more likely repeatable and relevant to tomorrow’s risks. I’m more impressed with someone who has outperformed by a little bit over multiple cycles than someone who has outperformed by a lot over one. This is true for managers, marriages, countries, products, and businesses—compounding favors endurance over sprints and tolerance over avoidance.”

Why does this matter to the future of learning?

Schools of the Future will form resilient learners by giving them opportunities to work on unknown problems with unknown solutions.

The real world won’t care how students did on their SATs or ACTs or APs. Those are fragile assessments for fragile thinking.

The real world will take note of students who have learned to spot risk and endure it—over and over. Tackling unknown problems by designing unknown solutions will naturally develop resilience in learners.



Quote from Christopher Dede, Harvard Graduate School of Education

“The most dangerous experiment we can conduct with our children is to keep schooling the same at a time when every other aspect of our society is dramatically changing.”

Why does this matter to the future of learning?

The answer should be obvious.

H/T to Tara Kinsey, Head of School at Hewitt, for sharing this on Twitter.


Question of the week:

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Christian Talbot