robertogreco + pscs   67

soundcommute on Instagram
"Nic Warmenhoven I recently moved from Seattle to a rural island in the middle of Puget Sound. I still commute into the city; this is what I see."
nicwarmenhoven  pugetsoundcommunityschool  pscs  seattle 
june 2014 by robertogreco
The Foundation(s) is Strong! | Puget Sound Community School
"New to PSCS this year is the term “Foundations.” It refers specifically to the first two weeks of school, 9 school days in which the staff help the students build the foundation on which the rest of the school year is built. For instance, as this post is being written, the high school teaching staff is conducting a session with the high schoolers about the importance of self-reflection.

What do we mean by self-reflection?

For PSCS, it’s the ability to candidly and accurately measure one’s involvement in an activity. And it is something we want our students to learn how to do this year, and do even better than PSCS students have ever done before. That requires some structure and some guidance. And a foundation.

Other activities during foundation include a retreat, an explanation of the school’s code of conduct, how to run an effective check-in, how to be a good audience member, the scheduling circus, conflict resolution, and more. Of course, there is a lot of time to just play…"
communitybuilding  community  howweteach  cv  environment  teambuilding  foundations  self-reflection  tcsnmy  teaching  firstdays  2012  pugetsoundcommunityschool  pscs 
september 2012 by robertogreco
Apprenticeships and internships « Re-educate Seattle
"I’m using these two words—apprenticeship and certification—in a way that’s overly simplistic, but I’m doing it to make a point: when your daughter heads off to school each morning, does she treat it like an apprenticeship or an internship?

Is she more concerned with learning something interesting, or her GPA? Is she developing deep relationships with mentors, or merely securing snazzy letters of recommendation? Is she learning something useful right now, or participating in a ritual as preparation for the future?

* * *

Here’s perhaps the most important question: does your daughter’s school view it’s work as closer to providing apprenticeships, or internships?"
stevemiranda  2011  pscs  learning  apprenticeships  internships  unschooling  deschooling  learningbydoing  credentials  grades  grading  tcsnmy  toshare  usefulness  meaning  purpose  pugetsoundcommunityschool  from delicious
november 2011 by robertogreco
Certifying 14-year-old poets « Re-educate Seattle
"But here’s a question: should a 14-year-old who is forced to take a required class in poetry be subjected to a process of certification?

Given their brain development and the fact that traditional schooling places kids in required activities, should a 14-year-old—or an 8-year-old, or 16-year-old—be subjected to a process of certification for anything?

There are profound differences between the developmental needs of kids in K-12 versus those in higher education. Young kids need to be in environments in which they can try new things, experiment, grow up, discover who they are.

They need teachers to draw out the genius within them. Higher education, for those who choose that path, is a place where that genius can get refined into certified expertise."
certification  stevemiranda  learning  grades  grading  caltech  unschooling  deschooling  education  pscs  pugetsoundcommunityschool  highered  highereducation  discovery  exploration  maturity  k12  lcproject  tcsnmy  from delicious
october 2011 by robertogreco
The high school transcript is the most nefarious force in education that no one is talking about « Re-educate Seattle
"High school is a game that’s played by a certain set of rules. Those who are good at understanding and following the rules are rewarded with A’s. The problem is that, often, these rules have nothing to do with a student’s command of academic content.

So all the complexity of Jane, Andrew, and Zelia are reduced to this:

Jane – A
Andrew – B
Zelia – F

As their classroom teacher, I can tell you with certainty: these letters, they do not mean what you think they mean."
stevemiranda  collegeadmissions  highschool  grades  grading  assessment  learning  education  pscs  pugetsoundcommunityschool  2011  transcripts  schooliness  unschooling  deschooling  tcsnmy  lcproject  standardization  thegameofschool  theprincessbride  from delicious
september 2011 by robertogreco
Pick yourself « Re-educate Seattle
"In school, students are taught to wait to be picked. If you want to speak in class, you…raise your hand & wait until the teacher calls on you. If you want to be editor of the school newspaper, you have to hope the faculty advisor picks you. If you want to gain approval from your parents & teachers upon graduation, you have to hope Harvard picks you.

What if, instead of training students to wait to be picked, we encouraged students to pick themselves?

Instead of waiting for the teacher to call on them, we could encourage students to facilitate their own learning experiences, w/ support from a guide/mentor. We could encourage them to start their own underground newspaper. Instead of dedicating their high school years trying to please Ivy League admissions officers, we could encourage them to focus on the things they’re passionate about & help them create a personalized, customized post-high school plan that fed their soul & gave them a chance to make an impact on the world."
stevemiranda  pscs  agency  entrepreneurship  unschooling  deschooling  learning  doing  richardbranson  2011  lcproject  tcsnmy  actionminded  pugetsoundcommunityschool  from delicious
september 2011 by robertogreco
We have to stop daydreaming about this « Re-educate Seattle
"we’re trying something new: What if we invited people to come to campus and just to do something they love doing?


This is a different kind of teaching in that it’s spontaneously responding to a student’s curiosity in the moment. This is the kind of activity that enriches the school environment.

* * *

Will these new ideas work? I don’t know. But we’re going to find out.

There are two things we’re not going to. We’re not going to force students to participate in a battery of required activities, then use punishments and rewards to ensure compliance.

And, we’re not going to sit around watching Sir Ken Robinson’s “Do Schools Kill Creativity?” TED talk, lament the sad state of education in this country, & daydream about what it would be like if school was different.

As a society, we have to stop daydreaming about this."
stevemiranda  lcproject  unschooling  deschooling  modeling  teaching  learning  education  2011  pscs  pugetsoundcommunityschool  doing  cv  daydreaming  motivation  punishment  rewards  coercion  compliance  schools  todo  tcsnmy  curriculumisdead  domanifesto  action  actionminded  from delicious
september 2011 by robertogreco
The lesson that I took me more than a decade to learn « Re-educate Seattle
"I walked into the office of PSCS founder Andy Smallman and asked him, “Are we an alternative school?”

“No,” he said.

“I know that, but what do you say when people ask that question?”

“Alternative schools use alternative strategies for helping kids understand geography and science and math and literature,” he said. “That’s not our product.”

“What’s our product?”

“Our product is this environment,” he said. “We provide a safe, loving, nurturing environment in which kids feel connected to a caring community, then we surround them with people of high character who are excited about life and excited about learning. Then we partner with them to help them figure out what they love to do, what brings them joy.”"
andysmallman  pscs  stevemiranda  pugetsoundcommunityschool  education  unschooling  deschooling  2011  2009  progressive  learning  environment  schooldesign  lcproject  from delicious
august 2011 by robertogreco
Why euphoria in school can’t last (from the archives) « Re-educate Seattle
"first stage [PSCS students tend to move through] being “euphoria.” Students can’t believe it when they find themselves in a place where everyone is so focused on helping them engage in activities that bring them joy.

…can fade…students can begin to grow bored. No one is forcing them do anything. They haven’t yet learned skill of self-direction…don’t know what to do w/ themselves.

…by the time PSCS students head to college, they’ve had years of practice at self-direction & support in learning how to handle responsibility. Sometimes, they report being disappointed in their first semester in college because other students are only there to party & mess around.

I can relate: I wasted a great deal of the first 3 years of my college experience simply going through a process of growing up.

“Those students are just entering stage one. They go off to college, & it’s the first time they ever get to make decisions that affect their life. They’re in a state of euphoria.”"
self-directedlearning  self-directed  stevemiranda  tcsnmy  pscs  pugetsoundcommunityschool  learning  maturity  colleges  universities  education  motivation  life  responsibility  from delicious
august 2011 by robertogreco
What does it mean to “love the child”? « Re-educate Seattle
"In our staff meetings at PSCS, we rarely talk about academic subjects. The content of our staff meetings is typically filled with dialogue about individual kids. Our goal is to make sure that every student in the school—and with eight staff members serving 38 students, it’s not hard to track, literally, every student in the school—is excited about something in their life, excited about something at school, feeling connected to other members of the community, and challenging herself to stretch outside her comfort zone."
pscs  teaching  caring  education  love  tcsnmy  pugetsoundcommunityschool  stevemiranda  2011  progressive  lcproject  from delicious
july 2011 by robertogreco
What does your school stand for? « Re-educate Seattle
"What does it stand for? What is its mission? What does it believe in? What outcomes does it consistently deliver? Is there a match between what the school offers & what kids & families want?…

Finally, it’s unlikely that a match exists between the school & families because the school has never really figured out what it’s trying to accomplish. Many families have reduced their hopes to merely surviving the ordeal w/ a minimum amount of pain.

One of the best things we can do to help transform our schools is figure out—specifically—what they’re trying to accomplish. & that doesn’t mean all schools should have the same mission. In fact, each school should have its own unique mission.

Once that’s established, schools can go about the business of connecting w/ families that are a good fit for their particular mission. Either that, or they can continue declaring “academic achievement for all” & stumbling on the never-ending “reform” treadmill."
education  values  mission  missionstatements  tcsnmy  clarity  purpose  outcomes  lcproject  teaching  learning  community  parents  students  stevemiranda  pscs  publicschools  2011  pugetsoundcommunityschool  from delicious
june 2011 by robertogreco
Now, we make projects « Re-educate Seattle
"we don’t live in a factory economy anymore. There’s no such thing as “set it & forget it.” The pace of change in the digital age is too rapid, & the competition too relentless. You’d think that Facebook, w/ it’s hundreds of millions of users, would be able to sit back & simply let the profits come rolling in. But it recently recruited the CEO of Netflix to its Board of Directors because it knows that it’s not 2009 anymore. Times have changed since then.

We don’t go to work in factories anymore. Now, we work on projects. Sometimes those projects last 3 months, or they might last 9 years. These projects typically involve either solving a specific problem or, if you’re doing truly innovative work, identifying a problem before it becomes a problem & being the first to market with a solution. The have a beginning, middle, & end. When the project is finished—remember, there’s no specific timetable for how long any given project will take—then it’s time to get busy on the next one."
projects  projectbasedlearning  education  tcsnmy  toshare  sethgodin  stevemiranda  learning  factoryschools  unschooling  deschooling  facebook  making  doing  self-directedlearning  problemsolving  criticalthinking  2011  thisiswhatwedo  howwework  howwelearn  pscs  pugetsoundcommunityschool  pbl  from delicious
june 2011 by robertogreco
Sitting around « Re-educate Seattle
"I visited an awesome progressive school today. The thing that was most impressive was this: there were kids all over the place who were doing absolutely nothing productive.

That may sound strange, but I think it’s the defining characteristic of a progressive school. Having anti-racist values or an environmental curriculum don’t make your school progressive. It’s not about your lesson plans, it’s the structure of the educational environment that makes all the difference…

A lot of schools talk about lifelong learning and nurturing curiosity, but when they stand at the edge of that precipice—what happens if we give students freedom to direct their own learning, and they just sit around?—they refuse to jump…

It takes patience. It takes faith. But sometimes, you have to let kids just sit around and do nothing. It’s in those moments when they’re learning the lesson they’ll carry with them for the rest of their lives: I am in charge of my own education."
pscs  pugetsoundcommunityschool  tcsnmy  lcproject  progressive  teaching  education  schooliness  unschooling  deschooling  agency  empowerment  learning  schools  unstructuredtime  productivity  stevemiranda  from delicious
may 2011 by robertogreco
What’s the point? « Re-educate Seattle
"What I learned from that class and had clarified by that assignment was what I wanted from my education. I wanted my learning to be supported, not required of me. I wanted an environment where I could experiment and fail or succeed with someone to give constructive feedback and encouragement regardless of the outcome. This was not always possible in the education structure of my high school, but it stuck with me when teachers made an effort to provide it."
stevemiranda  tcsnmy  pscs  learning  education  lcproject  unschooling  deschooling  thinking  engagement  risk  constructivecriticism  constructivism  failure  success  teaching  schools  pugetsoundcommunityschool  from delicious
may 2011 by robertogreco
PSCS fundraiser: "Learning isn't about being perfect"
[Great piece by a PSCS parent, plus…]

"Here's what she took out:

“Lest you think I’m praising too much, let me say it's a growing community there. They have their bumps, and they meet challenges head-on. They try. They stay open to learning and growth.”

This, I think, shines a spotlight on a fundamental problem we face in schools, and highlights an area in which PSCS is so remarkable. For generations, school has been about getting the right answer. It has been about getting an “A,” acing the test, being perfect. Take a tour of some other schools in the city and they’ll show you only the classrooms they want you to see, only the shiniest students, and only the teachers who appear to be perfect. It’s all a part of the myth that says, when you’re learning, mistakes should be avoided at all costs.

That’s not who we are. And that’s not what learning looks like.

Learning means stepping outside your comfort zone and trying something new, then reflecting on the experience."
pscs  learning  education  schools  progressive  unschooling  deschooling  stevemiranda  pugetsoundcommunityschool  lcproject  mistakes  reflection  tcsnmy  cv  perfection  community  self-knowledge  self-directedlearning  2011  from delicious
april 2011 by robertogreco
Wanna run? You can « Re-educate Seattle
"The way schools are structured teaches kids to think that anything you want to do requires asking permission first. Without that permission, we learn to sit around and wait for something to change. There’s no process in place to help kids learn how to initiate something. One of the best things we can do for kids is to help them internalize some version of these two-word messages.

Mine is, “You can.”

Clay Hebert’s is “Wanna run?”"
stevemiranda  pscs  permission  doing  cv  glvo  tcsnmy  lcproject  teaching  learning  experience  hesitance  inhibition  unschooling  deschooling  pugetsoundcommunityschool  from delicious
march 2011 by robertogreco
Why most conversations about education start with the wrong premise « Re-educate Seattle
"overwhelming majority of the discussions around fixing our schools happen w/ the wrong set of assumptions. For the most part, pundits argue about the best ways to deliver academic content from teachers to students…

…new way of thinking is that the point of school is to facilitate the transition from childhood to adulthood. That means designing schools based on research from the field of human development, not on research on how to raise test scores.

Academic content is important—it’s really important!—& best learned by kids who are pursuing material that interests them, who are surrounded by adults they trust, who are intrinsically motivated to learn, who are mature and responsible, and who have a sense of autonomy over their education.

This was taught to me by PSCS founder Andy Smallman: the first focus of school should be on creating an environment grounded in sound principles of human development. Academic learning then becomes a powerful by-product of that environment…"
stevemiranda  education  learning  schools  tcsnmy  lcproject  unschooling  deschooling  humandevelopment  standardizedtesting  testing  content  andysmallman  pscs  2011  pugetsoundcommunityschool  from delicious
march 2011 by robertogreco
Don’t tell me what you’re passionate about « Re-educate Seattle
"School can help facilitate this process. One of the best things we can do is to give kids autonomy in how they spend their time, including time in which they’re not required to do anything in particular.

As educators we can stand back & observe how they spend that time. Students will fill those unscheduled slots w/ activities that give them joy. (This is the part that many people have a hard time believing. They think kids are lazy & unless they’re told what to do, they’ll just sit around…not true.) Then we don’t have to ask them what they want to be when they grow up. Instead, we can say things like, “I’ve noticed you’re spending a lot of time drawing superhero characters. Would you like to meet a professional illustrator?”

The way traditional schools are structured causes kids miss out on these opportunities. They spend their days sitting through required classes, then it’s home to decompress from the stress of school w/ video games or YouTube videos, then it’s homework time…"
openstudio  unschooling  deschooling  stevemiranda  pscs  pugetsoundcommunityschool  progressive  democratic  freeschools  autonomy  motivation  choice  entrepreneurship  identity  self  productivity  google20%  education  schools  schooliness  trust  learning  teaching  passion  unstructuredtime  from delicious
february 2011 by robertogreco
You have to let go « Re-educate Seattle
"The problem with standards is that by imposing a minimum, you are at the same time imposing a maximum. If you say to your 10th grade English class, “Write a five-page essay analyzing Joseph Heller’s use irony in Catch-22,” there’s pretty much zero chance that anyone will go above and beyond that.

If you say to a student, “Your assignment is to write 67 music reviews,” he’s going to look at you like you’re insane.

But if you help kids identify what they love to do and support them in pursuing it, you will be amazed at the kind of work they’ll produce. The key is, you have to let go. You have to let the students set their own standards, because the standards they set for themselves will far surpass anything you try to impose upon them."
writing  cv  teaching  tcsnmy  stevemiranda  pscs  learning  expression  meaning  purpose  standards  standardization  unschooling  deschooling  motivation  intrinsicmotivation  education  schools  pedagogy  pugetsoundcommunityschool  from delicious
february 2011 by robertogreco
Am I willing to be that brave? « Re-educate Seattle
"This is why, when PSCS is recruiting volunteers, we’re not necessarily looking for people to teach a particular academic discipline. We’re looking for people to be role models for kids. We’re looking for people of high character who are excited about life. We want to surround kids with people who pursue things they love, who step outside their comfort zone, and who take their passion and DO something with it.

We want kids to look at our volunteers and think, Am I willing to be that brave?"
pscs  stevemiranda  andysmallman  tcsnmy  passion  learning  mentoring  teaching  pedagogy  modeling  pugetsoundcommunityschool  from delicious
february 2011 by robertogreco
Three rules for bringing out the best in teachers « Re-educate Seattle
"My friend Nick wrote to me earlier this week and scolded me for constantly critiquing the existing paradigm while rarely proposing specific solutions. So, with a nod to Nick, here’s my specific advice:

1.    Hire talented teachers and let them teach what inspires them.

2.    Never require—in fact, never allow—a teacher to teach content that doesn’t inspire him or her.

3.    Allow teachers to bring their whole selves to work; don’t limit their ability to share talents and things they love simply because it falls outside of their academic department.

I know what you’re thinking: If we followed this advice, we’d have to completely re-invent the way we’ve structured our schools. The current model simply can’t accommodate these recommendations.

Exactly. We have to re-invent the way we structure our schools."
pscs  stevemiranda  tcsnmy  education  teaching  change  gamechanging  passion  interest  interestdriven  interestdriventeaching  standards  hiring  management  administration  curriculum  curriculumisdead  lcproject  schools  pugetsoundcommunityschool  from delicious
february 2011 by robertogreco
No disrespect intended toward Emily Dickinson, but . . . « Re-educate Seattle
"In this case—and I would argue that this principle is universal—academic content and skills serve as a means towards helping the student mature from childhood to adulthood, from a novice learner dependant on others to a self-directed one that is capable of greater independence.

We spend a lot of time in schools worrying about the product of learning, and not nearly enough on the process."
stevemiranda  processoverproduct  process  projectbasedlearning  projects  teaching  learning  schools  education  pscs  tcsnmy  self-directedlearning  maturity  dependence  interdependence  independence  self-sufficiency  pugetsoundcommunityschool  pbl  from delicious
february 2011 by robertogreco
There are reasons to attend elite universities, but I don’t think any of them are related to education « Re-educate Seattle
"For many young people, getting into elite universities means sacrificing sleep, relationships, and time that could be spent pursuing personal passions in order to prepare a resume that will impress the admissions committees. That gives you the privilege of paying a quarter of a million dollars for access to academic content that’s free with an Internet connection and a library card, and a network of peers not nearly as impressive as those that could be found elsewhere. For free.

There are reasons to attend elite universities, but I don’t think any of them are related to education."
education  colleges  universities  stevemiranda  pscs  ivyleague  money  motivation  learning  unschooling  deschooling  selectivity  opencourseware  pugetsoundcommunityschool  from delicious
january 2011 by robertogreco
Community. Community. Community. « Re-educate Seattle
"Community. Community. Community.

In school, we operate under the conceit that if we focus on content delivery—that is, if our lesson plans and unit plans are elegantly prepared—then human relationships won’t matter.

And after-school programs are left to pick up the pieces.

Of course, classroom teachers know that relationships matter. But school is not set up in a way to enable true community to develop. Six classes a day, five minutes between classes and 30 minutes for lunch. Get ‘em in, get ‘em out. One teacher typically sees 150 kids every day, for 55 minutes at a time. In that structure, there’s a limit to what classroom teachers can do to build the authentic, caring human relationships that provide the foundation for academic and social growth.

The failings of our schools are not a result of the failings of individuals. It’s a failing of the institution.

We need to redesign the institution."
stevemiranda  pscs  pugetsoundcommunityschool  education  tcsnmy  learning  community  communities  lcproject  curriculum  socialcurriculum  toshare  topost  change  relationships  responsiveclassroom  responsivedesign  from delicious
november 2010 by robertogreco
The students who were happy when I handed them a textbook « Re-educate Seattle
"The students had been waiting for this moment all semester. All they wanted was to be given a task and told what to do. And if you ask the folks who set up the education system in the 19th century—with the intent of training workers for a factory economy—if it was working well, I’m sure they’d offer an enthusiastic, “Yes!”

But this isn’t the 19th century. We don’t live in a factory economy.

We should stop using this structure.

We need to create something new."
stevemiranda  teaching  learning  education  lcproject  unschooling  deschooling  pscs  pugetsoundcommunityschool  factoryschools 
october 2010 by robertogreco
The Fisch Flip, or why upside down thinking can drive innovation « Re-educate Seattle
"Karl Fisch…upended typical way we think about teaching: videotaped his lectures, uploaded them to YouTube, & assigned them as homework. Then had students do what used to be homework—practice problems—in class where he walks around & gives students one-on-one help.

…Pink explains how Seth Godin proposed a Fisch Flip for book publishing industry: publishers launch new book by releasing cheap paperback, & then introduce pricey hardcover once it catches on.

Or what if movie studio released film on DVD, let word of mouth spread, then invite early adopters to watch it on big screen as communal experience?

…another: one software company has decided to throw huge party for employees on first day on job, rather than waiting for a going-away party on their last day.

This is just a start. The most forward thinking people in business are refusing to accept the rules of the previous generation. They’re challenging every assumption, & sometimes completely flipping the script."
karlfisch  danielpink  stevemiranda  sethgodin  fischflip  andysmallman  pscs  happiness  education  learning  homework  publishing  books  dvd  film  movies  business  gamechanging  pugetsoundcommunityschool  from delicious
september 2010 by robertogreco
The Statue of Responsibility « Re-educate Seattle
"Any definition of progressive education has to include, in addition to students having the freedom to direct their own education, some discussion of individual’s responsibility to a larger community."
progressive  education  learning  stevemiranda  pscs  pugetsoundcommunityschool  andysmallman  viktorfrankl  community  communityservice  activism  responsibility  tcsnmy  self-directed  society  self-directedlearning  from delicious
september 2010 by robertogreco
The story of Sisyphus « Re-educate
Count on Steve Miranda to save me the trouble of responding to Tom Friedman's clueless column from the other day:

"And so another generation will replay the story of Sisyphus, pushing that boulder—with tenacity, seriousness, ferocity, and quiet heroism—up the hill, only to watch it roll back down again. There seems to be no sense here that the fundamental assumption driving the system—that teenagers should be coerced by punishments and rewards to learn skills and concepts that have no meaning to their lives—is flawed. Instead, Friedman implies, we need to just work harder!

I have no interest in playing the role of Sisyphus. I’m working to gather people who want to build something new and beautiful, and if you want to join us, there’s room for you. Our work is not about tenacity and ferocity, it’s about joy and community. And I’m telling you, it’s really fun."
thomasfriedman  education  pscs  tcsnmy  learning  schools  alternative  change  policy  publicschools  cv  whywedowhatwedo  community  lcproject  sisyphus  moreofthesame  waitingforsuperman  pugetsoundcommunityschool  from delicious
august 2010 by robertogreco
“. . . ready to welcome the ecstatic experience” « Re-educate
"There are plenty of smart people of good character who would love to teach. But maybe they don’t want to teach full time, don’t want to spend thousands of dollars & 18 months getting a teaching credential, & they certainly don’t want to teach classes in subjects that don’t interest them or their students. And so they miss out on the electric feeling that teaching gives. But it doesn’t have to be that way.

We can build a network of community schools on every street corner, ones that not only provide safe, loving, nurturing environments for kids, but also provide an opportunity for adults in the community to share what they love. Imagine a city in which every adult had the chance to have their lives enriched by the experience of teaching & learning in an environment that was designed to fuel people’s passions. Imagine how alive we would all feel!

We can do this. But we have to build new schools that are, as Emily Dickinson wrote, “ready to welcome the ecstatic experience.”"
stevemiranda  pscs  pugetsoundcommunityschool  emilydickinson  teaching  schools  lcproject  tcsnmy  credentials  community  schooldesign  alternative  learning  from delicious
august 2010 by robertogreco
Why can’t classes be more like Meetups? « Re-educate
"Here’s a line from Tellio:

“Why can’t classes be more like Meet-Ups? Some of my most successful classes were ones where we met socially for breakfast or coffee/tea. Why not have a Meet-Up Monday?”…

The thing I think they most appreciated about that class was, for once, something in school felt authentic. It felt spontaneous.

* * *

According to Wikipedia, “Meetup allows members to find and join groups unified by a common interest, such as politics, books, games, movies, health, pets, careers or hobbies.” No tests, no arbitrary hierarchy, no grades, no bathroom passes. Just a group of people connecting with others to engage in conversation about something they’re passionate about.

So why can’t classes be more like Meetups?

In some leading edge progressive schools, that’s exactly what they’re like."
education  tcsnmy  meetups  spontaneity  teaching  conversation  progressive  schools  learning  dicussion  lcproject  informallearning  informality  stevemiranda  pscs  pugetsoundcommunityschool  from delicious
august 2010 by robertogreco
Reflections on the valedictorian’s speech « Re-educate
"Erica Goldson can give speeches every day for the rest of her life. I can write blog posts until my fingers fall off. Sir Ken Robinson’s TED talks are indeed powerful. Alfie Kohn’s & Daniel Pink’s books are important & compelling reads. But it all remains a self-indulgent exercise unless someone builds schools—or transforms existing schools—into places that nurture kids’ intrinsic motivation to learn, & allow them to direct their own education & pursue their strengths. At some point, we need to stop talking, stop writing, & [do]…

There is something seductive about the act of rebellion. The adrenaline rush that comes from speaking truth to power can become addictive. But oing the lonely, dangerous work of actually building something new is the stuff that actually makes change. That’s the work that really matters.

My advice…find someone who’s doing work that matters & ask how you can help. We’ve got a lot that needs to get done, & we’re going to need all the help we can get."
ericgoldson  valedictorians  do  make  tcsnmy  lcproject  stevemiranda  schools  education  productivity  learning  self-directedlearning  self-directed  motivation  intrinsicmotivation  pscs  kenrobinson  danielpink  pugetsoundcommunityschool  from delicious
august 2010 by robertogreco
The one thing you need to know (from the archives) « Re-educate
"“cognitive psychologists explain [..]. that when an event occurs, you store in your memory not only the specifics of the event, but also how this event made you feel. Over time, as more events occur, you build up a network of event memories all connected by the fact that they created in you a similar emotion. So when a new event occurs that makes you feel incompetent, the entire network of events-where-you-feel-incompetent lights up, making it almost impossible for you not to think about them. Negative thoughts will activate thoughts of past failings, whereas positive moods will activate thoughts of past successes.”
education  stevemiranda  learning  progressive  schools  schooling  deschooling  quitting  interests  psychology  cognition  pscs  memory  feelings  emotions  networks  brain  success  failure  mood  dropouts  tcsnmy  lcproject  pugetsoundcommunityschool 
august 2010 by robertogreco
News flash: Brontosaurus was not a real dinosaur « Re-educate
"when parents interested in PSCS for their child ask me about the school’s curriculum, I always tell them the same thing: “Our curriculum is responsibility. Our goal for our graduates is maturity.”
pscs  pugetsoundcommunityschool  stevemiranda  curriculum  tcsnmy  responsibility  progressive  toshare  lcproject  community  integrity  maturity 
july 2010 by robertogreco
The kid who couldn’t spell (from the archives) « Re-educate
"I asked a friend who works at a progressive school how he handles kids with glaring deficiencies in subjects that are deemed important by society: subjects like writing and spelling. “I’ll tell a student, you don’t have to write perfectly for me every time. But for times when it needs to be perfect, you need to show me that you know how you can deliver perfect.”
stevemiranda  pscs  tcsnmy  writing  spelling  necessity  curriculum  self-directedlearning  pugetsoundcommunityschool 
july 2010 by robertogreco
Time magazine = traditional schools « Re-educate
"This is a revolution in our society, and education policymakers and legislators are either unaware or acting as if they hope it will go away. It’s not going to. The days of average schools for average kids—and pre-fab curricula passed down from above—will soon go the way of Time magazine. People will simply stop settling for an average education for their kids when they can choose from the rising number of options that are customized just for them."
stevemiranda  schools  education  future  changer  revolution  botiqueschools  scale  pscs  pugetsoundcommunityschool  tcsnmy  choice  customization  policy  us  society  differentiation  differentiatedlearning  options  charterschools 
june 2010 by robertogreco
How to deal with poverty in schools « Re-educate
"Perhaps that’s one way to define wealth: the ability to choose from many options. In this way, our schools are suffering from a poverty that is much more profound than just a lack of money. Our schools—teachers & students—are suffering from a staggering lack of options...a profound absence of the possibility of anything interesting happening."
pscs  pugetsoundcommunityschool  tcsnmy  small  transformation  lcproject  cv  schools  education  poverty  options  wealth  change  gamechanging  deschooling  optimism  stevemiranda  choices  teaching  scale 
june 2010 by robertogreco
Raising the bar for things that matter « Re-educate
"[PSCS] graduation requirements. Every senior needs to write a credo, which is a statement of belief about what matters to you...needs to complete a senior project, which is an ambitious undertaking that advances a personal passion & demonstrates the ability to set a goal & achieve it over time...must meet certain standards of community involvement & uphold school’s core commitments: engage the community, practice integrity, act with courage."
pscs  tcsnmy  identity  belief  education  policy  simplicity  stevemiranda  plp  passion  learning  curriculum  unschooling  deschooling  schools  standards  community  goals  self-directedlearning  pugetsoundcommunityschool 
june 2010 by robertogreco
Graduation day « Re-educate
"This was unlike any graduation ceremony I’ve ever heard of, and it was an experience that will be impossible to forget. It’s the result of asking two simple questions: What is the purpose of a graduation ceremony? Instead of doing what has always been done, how can we create a ceremony that will be appropriate for this time, this place, and this unique group of people?"
pscs  graduation  tcsnmy  pugetsoundcommunityschool  stevemiranda 
june 2010 by robertogreco
PSCS Story Number 1: Andy Smallman [.pdf]
"A dozen years later, out of high school and having returned home from an adventure in Alaska, Andy realized what he needed to do: he was going to be an elementary school teacher. His childhood experience remains a vivid memory."
empathy  andysmallman  pscs  pugetsoundcommunityschool  teaching  learning  children  experience  tcsnmy  disabilities  education  dyslexia  culture  evergreenstatecollege  alternative  careers  cv  biography  lcproject  unschooling  deschooling  filetype:pdf  media:document  disability 
may 2010 by robertogreco
Kindness Theme of the Week
"The concept of this blog is in response to requests from people who have participated in one or more of the online kindness classes offered by Andy Smallman and the Puget Sound Community School in Seattle. People were hoping to be provided some inspirational ideas for acts of kindness they could perform, much as is done in the regular classes. For those of you looking for a full-blown kindness class, Andy plans to offer them again in the fall."
kindness  andysmallman  pscs  pugetsoundcommunityschool 
may 2010 by robertogreco
Lessons we can learn from the positive psychology movement « Re-educate
"In schools, we...pathologize kids by making them do things that don’t make sense to them, then giving them grades so they have a record of all the ways in which they’re deficient. The academic program serves as a way to make all kids “normal” by pushing them towards a predetermined minimum standard."
stevemiranda  tcsnmy  lcproject  pscs  pugetsoundcommunityschool  learning  grading  grades  assessment  autonomy  deschooling  unschooling  positivepsychology  psychology 
may 2010 by robertogreco
Classroom Reinvented - The Garfield Messenger
"Though the absence of letter grades & report cards is attractive to some, PSCS isn’t for everyone. According PSCS teacher Scobie Putchtler, the school aims to be thought of not as a last resort, but as a forefront educational institution."
pscs  pugetsoundcommunityschool  progressive  tcsnmy  grades  grading  admissions  colleges  universities  deschooling  unschooling  schools  education  learning 
may 2010 by robertogreco
The rise of DIY education « Re-educate
"Schools that continue to treat students like factory workers will find themselves creeping towards irrelevance. Schools that create an environment that nurtures curiosity, creativity and collaboration will continue to grow in demand."
tcsnmy  stevemiranda  pscs  creativity  lcproject  learning  collaboration  change  gamechanging  opencourseware  curiosity  diy  diyeducation  deschooling  unschooling  sethgodin  economics  pugetsoundcommunityschool 
may 2010 by robertogreco
Alfie Kohn is, I think, missing the point « Re-educate
"Here’s a letter written by Alfie Kohn. It’s for schools that don’t give grades to send off to colleges on behalf of their students. I like it, but I think he—just like almost every other education critic I’ve read—is missing the most important thing... The game-changing idea in reimagining our education system is that when you pressure kids with academics, it makes them not like it. However, if you engage the whole child—if you dedicate yourself to making the child feel safe, secure, and loved—those kids will tackle academics with a passion and purpose that will far exceed what they would do if you engage them only in academics."
alfiekohn  stevemiranda  pscs  pugetsoundcommunityschool  education  schools  learning  academics  whatmatters  grades  grading  self  tcsnmy  lcproject 
april 2010 by robertogreco
Re-educate | Facebook
"Re-Educate is looking to connect people in the Puget Sound area who believe the industrial model of school should be quietly laid to rest as we welcome a new kind of school for the 21st century. Mission: This page is designed to serve as a gathering place for people interested in helping organize Re-Educate 2012: a Collaborative Learning Event."
stevemiranda  pscs  cascadia  education  learning  unschooling  deschooling  2012  unconferences  togo  tcsnmy  change  gamechanging  progressive  schools  pugetsoundcommunityschool 
march 2010 by robertogreco
There is no one right way (teaching = asymptote) « Re-educate
"There is no one right way, and that includes whatever your school or your classroom—no matter how great it is—is doing right now..."
education  progress  change  progressive  tcsnmy  humility  narcissism  learning  cv  teaching  pscs  iteration  process  asymptote  metaphor  pugetsoundcommunityschool 
march 2010 by robertogreco
Why Apple’s $40 billion matters to us « Re-educate
"The traditional school model hinders imagination and creativity because it’s very hard to be original when you’re constantly being asked to produce. On the contrary, the progressive school where I work does not schedule regular classes on Fridays. Instead, we leave that space open for field trips, guest speakers, or just socializing. Here’s a quick story—taken from Imagination First, by Eric Liu and Scott Noppe-Brandon—about Whole Foods founder and CEO John Mackey that illustrates the point: “As often as possible, in good quarters or bad, he will clear his calendar for days at a time. During those blank hours, he reads. He thinks. He gets lost in science fiction, economic theory, comic books. He notices where resistance arises, where inspiration flares. He’s not trying, Mackey insists, to cultivate imagination. There’s no plan. He merely trusts that letting things unfold nonlinearly is the best approach to growth that is enduring and, well, organic.”"
pscs  learning  creativity  stevemiranda  tcsnmy  openstudio  time  imagination  lcproject  unschooling  deschooling  freetime  progressive  pugetsoundcommunityschool 
march 2010 by robertogreco
What not to do « Re-educate
"If you want to teach your children to be ethical, a really bad way to do it would be to coerce them into following a “ethics” curriculum filled w/ worksheets & tests. A better way would be to surround the child w/ ethical people, & consistently elevate in their consciousness the value of being ethical."
schools  lcproject  education  modeling  tcsnmy  pscs  stevemiranda  unschooling  deschooling  curriculum  learning  ethics  math  responsibility  pugetsoundcommunityschool 
february 2010 by robertogreco
Puget Sound Community School: PSCS spotlighted in Dan Pink's new book | Facebook
"Puget Sound Community School. Like Sudbury and Big Picture, this tiny independent school in Seattle gives its students a radical dose of autonomy, turning the 'one-size-fits-all' approach of conventional schools on its head. Each student has an advisor who acts as her personal coach, helping her come up with her own learning goals. "School" consists of a mixture of class time and self-created independent study projects, along with community service devised by the students. Since youngsters are often away from campus, they gain a clear sense that their learning has a real world purpose. And rather than chase after grades, they receive frequent, informal feedback from advisers, teachers, and peers. For more information, go to"
danielpink  pugetsoundcommunityschool  pscs  progressive  motivation  intrinsicmotivation  tcsnmy  grades  grading  assessment  evaluation  lcproject  unschooling  deschooling  drive  sudburyschools  bigpictureschools  autonomy 
january 2010 by robertogreco
Local News | Kindness taught in Seattle school's online class | Seattle Times Newspaper
"A small private school in Seattle offered a kindness class this fall, part of a larger movement that started more than a decade ago. Offered online, the class had 250 people — the most ever — who lived as far away as Poland."
pscs  pugetsoundcommunityschool  seattle  kindness  tcsnmy  online  extensioncourses  community  well-being  society  andysmallman 
december 2009 by robertogreco
“Our product is an environment” « Re-educate
"No, we’re not an alternative school. An alternative school uses alternative means to help students master concepts in geography, science, mathematics, and literature. Their product is the same as traditional schools: academic achievement."
unschooling  deschooling  education  learning  lcproject  stevemiranda  pscs  pugetsoundcommunityschool 
december 2009 by robertogreco
"Re-Educate is looking to connect people in the Puget Sound area who believe the industrial model of school should be quietly laid to rest as we welcome a new kind of school for the 21st century. This blog is also designed to serve as a gathering place for people interested in helping organize Re-Educate 2012: a Collaborative Learning Event. For information, email"

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education  blogs  community  alternative  seattle  pscs  stevemiranda  washingtonstate  schools  schooling  lcproject  pugetsoundcommunityschool  tcsnmy  conferences  deschooling  unschooling  gamechanging  progressive 
november 2009 by robertogreco
Homeschool Resource Centers (free video!) « Education Revolution
"A DVD of a homeschool resource centers featuring the Snakefoot Education Center, at Common Ground Community. This is a group of families that created a center in which 15 homeschooled children meet three times a week. They also hired a resource person. Also highlights of Puget Sound Community school, & Clearwater School in Seattle."
pugetsoundcommunityschool  homeschool  lcproject  unschooling  deschooling  schools  video  pscs 
october 2009 by robertogreco
Independent Puget Sound Community School frees kids to choose own paths
"freewheeling center of self-directed education in Seattle - which makes Montessori seem regimented - goal is to honor students' individual learning styles while ensuring they meet state academic requirements...In keeping with school's emphasis on personal responsibility & choice, students can opt out of service projects & spend Weds studying independently. Each student has 131 hrs annually that can be spent away from school & used at their discretion...students say school's approach requires motivation & considerable work to ensure they're learning...there are no counselors to track credits...Not all of its 5 staff instructors are certified teachers, a qualification Smallman sees as unnecessary, possibly even counterproductive...said the school doesn't track how many of its graduates go on to higher ed, but doesn't see that as ultimate measure of its success...gauges that instead on whether past & present students are "satisfied with their position in life -- whatever that may be."
tcsnmy  constructivism  learning  alternative  pscs  pugetsoundcommunityschool  seattle  washingtonstate  lcproject  deschooling  schools  unschooling  highschool  independent  indepentlearning  self-directed  self-directedlearning 
october 2009 by robertogreco

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