I am not by nature a risk taker. In fact, I’m pretty conservative when it comes to most things. In my mind, however, I fight a daily struggle between traditional me and my more radical side. For example, when it comes to education there are many things I think should change, , but alas, I am a rule follower and that side of me often over-powers the part that wants to break out and do something different.
I have been working on breaking out more, and I have made some changes to my teaching; I am far less “traditional” than I used to be. But there are things I’d really like to try that I haven’t been brave enough to do yet. One of those things is “Twenty Percent Time”, inquiry-driven time when students work on what they want to work on. It is an idea suggested in Drive, an awesome read by Dan Pink. If you haven’t read, or heard about it, check out his Ted Talk. In it he refers to companies like Google and Atlassian that give employees time to work on their own projects–and they have come up with some amazing results. Pink suggests that teachers allow students to do the same.
AJ Juliani is a strong proponent of twenty percent time in schools. He has some great information on his blog, where he debunks some of the myths and provides lots of great links. Check it out if you’d like more information, or like me, convincing.
I’ll be here, trying to work up the courage to make that leap.