Marginal Syllabus as OER and OEP

Remi Kalir, one of the organizers of the open annotation project Marginal Syllabus, explains how the project is an example of open educational resources (OER) and open educational practices (OEP), and its potential for ongoing teacher education. "We’re now more than halfway through the academic year, and as a Marginal Syllabus organizer I’ve been thinking a lot about how this experiment in equity-oriented, publicly networked, and interest-driven educator learning relates to open educational resources (OER) and open educational practices (OEP). This post is a rough attempt to connect dots by addressing the following question: How are everyday digital spaces transformed into open learning environments, and what might this look like for educator learning?" Interested in finding out more? Read the full article at Marginal Syllabus.

How Playing With Math Helps Teachers Better Empathize With Students

Math Teachers Circles create a space for educators to connect with the joys of discovery and collaborative problem-solving, creating lessons that inform their classroom practice. Michelle Manes has taught math in almost every setting. She taught public high school students, deaf elementary school students, and middle school girls at a single-sex school. But eventually, she couldn’t fight the feeling that as much as she loved teaching math, she also loved doing math, so she went back to get her Ph.D. in mathematics and is now a professor at the University of Hawaii. Although she has settled into a life of teaching undergraduate students and working on her own research, Manes still cares deeply about K-12 education. To stay connected to teachers in that world she helped start a Math Teachers’ Circle in Honolulu. The circle meets once a month and invites math teachers from all grade levels to get together and work on fun, challenging math alongside research mathematicians. “I try to bring that creativity and joy and excitement and discovery piece into the Math Teachers’ Circle and hope it trickles into the classroom,” Manes said. Unlike other professional development opportunities, the focus of these circles is not on lesson...
Read More

Story Project Builds Community Among Diverse Set of Teens

  • on Mar 6
  • in LRNG
  • by Natalie Orenstein

A new storytelling project in Kansas City builds community among diverse high school students. The age-old art of storytelling is back in style. Personal narrative podcasts are all the rage, and “story slam” shows like The Moth draw large crowds. A group of educators in Kansas City isn’t surprised, and they are working to bring that excitement to high schools. To them, storytelling is more than just a trend. It is a valuable practice that can improve students’ relationship to writing—and to one another. Given how storytelling draws out empathy in listeners and connects students to one another, it might also help to counteract the de facto segregation between schools in the area, the educators believe. Katie Kline, the Greater Kansas City Writing Project director, and several colleagues put that hope to work through Kansas City Storytellers, a new group of 30 students from several high schools in the area. The students met for a kick-off celebration in February and will subsequently gather for two weekend workshops in April, where they will write and tell their personal stories. “The expectation is that these students have stories the community needs to hear,” Kline said. “These are agents of change who want to...
Read More

Continuous Impact & Growth: Checking in with Previous LRNG Awardees

  • on Mar 3
  • in LRNG
  • by Educator Innovator

With the 2017 LRNG Innovators Challenge ongoing, we revisit the continuing success of some of our past grantees. In 2014, the first cohort of LRNG Innovators launched with the tagline of “No Bells, No Walls,” with applicants asked to focus on innovative projects and strategies to expand the time and space for youth to engage in interest-driven, production-centered work. In 2015, we once again challenged teachers to reach beyond the schoolhouse door for young people to follow their interests and do ambitious work. With the launch of the 2017 LRNG Innovators Challenge upon us, the staff at Educator Innovator found this to be a perfect opportunity to check in with previous LRNG grant awardees to observe the continuing impacts of their innovative projects within and beyond their respective learning communities. Many of these projects have already been blogged about here. We reached out to the project leads for updates: Making Our Worlds with the UNC Charlotte Writing Project The Making Our Worlds team, made up of teachers associated with the UNC Charlotte Writing Project in North Carolina, sought to demonstrate how student energy, imagination, and concern for their community can be harnessed to address issues of interest to them and...
Read More