Now what?: Supporting students through the ILP process

The school year is well underway and students are at the point where they are still excited to be learning and have grown comfortable with their teachers and classes. My seniors in Honors Imaginative Process are learning about the creative process by reading nonfiction texts by authors such as Stephen King and Elizabeth Gilbert. They’re also writing daily and working with each other to provide feedback and do mini-presentations on aspects of creativity. Because this is our first unit, students began by developing essential and guiding questions together as well as practicing the same standards as their peers. They were excited about the possibilities, but as an experienced inquiry teacher, I knew what was coming next: the point where they’ve laid all the groundwork for the unit and they ask, Now what? (more…)

Innovation and the ILP

At convocation, our superintendent, Dr. Jeffrey Moore, spoke about the upcoming school year and the goals for the district. One part of his presentation included his insights into Greg Satell’s “innovation matrix” and how it can be applied to work we do in education. Those of us in the field know that we are often innovating, always evolving. If you compare your first year teaching to your current practice, you can probably spot some obvious (and perhaps embarrassing) differences! We need to constantly adapt our practice to meet our students’ needs and to help them develop skills like flexibility and resilience. But what Satell’s matrix demonstrates is there are different types of innovation, and they are all important. Of course, it got me thinking about the ILP, both as an innovative model for teachers but more importantly as a tool to help students innovate. Because if that’s what we’re expected to do as adults, then that’s what we need to help our students achieve. (more…)