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Why Students Should Train like Football Teams

Posted by on Sep 2, 2015 in Blog | 0 comments

It can’t really be a coincidence that the start of school and football season coincide. Maybe we educators should take it as a sign and pay more attention to football, its players and coaches. No, I don’t mean we need to huddle in PD, though sometimes we do just that. Or that we all should turn to football as a distraction from the stress and heart wrenching work that it is to educate our children. To each her own. I also don’t advocate for our play space to be filled with the helmet-crushing action and hard hits that leave crowds of...

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A Summer of Innovation: Part 2 (Orr Elementary)

Posted by on Jul 14, 2015 in Blog, Education Innovation Fellowship, Featured | 1 comment

A Summer of Innovation: Part 2 (Orr Elementary)

Benjamin Orr Elementary is a District of Columbia Public School (DCPS) in Southeast Washington, D.C. During the school year, CityBridge Education Innovation Fellows Diane Johnson and Kelley Jones teach mathematics, science, and special education. However, during the summer, these two Fellows are piloting a station rotation-based blended learning model. Since their summer pilot focuses on English Language Arts and mathematics, this dynamic duo is already collaborating with their English Language Arts counterpart—who is new to blended...

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A Summer of Innovation: Part 1

Posted by on Jul 8, 2015 in Blog, Education Innovation Fellowship, Featured | 0 comments

A Summer of Innovation: Part 1

Are you interested in learning how to leverage educational technology? Do you want to learn how to implement a personalized learning model in your classroom? Are you always searching for opportunities to expand your professional learning network? If you’ve answered “yes” to any or all of these questions, then allow me to borrow a moment of your time. I want to introduce to you a group of talented D.C. public and public charter school educators who, in addition to teaching, are all participating in a unique, yearlong education innovation...

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Beginning My Summer Pilot: Student Success Sheet

Posted by on Jun 16, 2015 in Blog, Education Innovation Fellowship, Featured | 0 comments

Beginning My Summer Pilot: Student Success Sheet

As part of the Education Innovation Fellowship, each Fellow designs a summer pilot program that uses personalized and blended learning to solve a specific problem in our classrooms. For my pilot, I wanted to give students and their families better access to the various data points we use to measure student success. Our charter network (KIPP DC) does a great job tracking a lot of different student metrics, but unfortunately, these aren’t always shared with students and families in a way that’s easy for non-educators to understand. So I...

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Empowering the Nonconsumers

Posted by on May 19, 2015 in Blog, Education Innovation Fellowship, Featured | 0 comments

Empowering the Nonconsumers

My experience with Education Innovation Fellowship began with readings directly from or steeped in the language of the private sector, most notably The Lean Startup by Eric Ries. I am naturally suspicious of conflating of business and education; I fundamentally believe that a school cannot be run like a business. But as I read about hybrids and—be still, my Silicon Valley-watching heart—disruptive innovations, I quickly identified my students’ place in this world. Allow me to contextualize the Island of Misfit Toys that is my school...

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Helping Students Help Themselves: Tales from a Middle School Classroom

Posted by on May 18, 2015 in Blog | 1 comment

Helping Students Help Themselves: Tales from a Middle School Classroom

When using games in the classroom, teachers need to design their implementations in ways that fit their goals, the format of their class, and their students’ needs. Each classroom environment is different and it is not uncommon to find teachers with different implementations and even cases where the implementation may change over the course of the school year. As game developers and researchers, we take special interest in how and why teachers choose to use our games.   The Radix Endeavor is a multiplayer online game designed to...

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Test Pilot

Posted by on Mar 16, 2015 in Blog, Education Innovation Fellowship | 0 comments

Test Pilot

As Education Innovation Fellows, we will soon be implementing pilots in our classrooms to try to solve specific problems we’ve encountered. But I feel like I need to test pilot my test pilot, so that when I test my pilot, I’m sure my pilot will not crash. YES, you read that correctly. Let’s face it, innovation is a messy process. Basically, as you attempt to solve a problem in a new, engaging, creative, and more personalized way, you should expect and accept that there will be problems—no matter how much you plan. However, one thing...

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The Uphill Battle of Innovation

Posted by on Mar 5, 2015 in Blog, Education Innovation Fellowship, Featured | 0 comments

The Uphill Battle of Innovation

Landing at Dulles International Airport from California two weeks ago was a jarring return to winter; a runway full of snow after a week of 75 degrees and sunny is quite the adjustment. But my return has presented an even larger challenge for me: being innovative in a model that doesn’t preach innovation. Much like my colleague Desiree Smith wrote, I am also searching for my way to spread the ideas that I “received on the mountaintop.”   I returned to D.C. to find that many of my colleagues were interested in me being their eyes...

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