This year we’ve had this concept of an informal professional learning series running in the background…just trying it out a bit. So far we’ve gotten really positive feedback from folks and it’s something that I’d like to see grow in the future.
Basically, it goes something like this.
Someone generates a topic. Some examples have included BreakOutEDU, classroom design, outdoor education, play-based learning…and the list goes on. These are topics and concepts that educators and families are passionate about but that we can’t always hyper focus on in our main professional learning opportunities.
Someone lets me know they’d like an Innovation Lab about a topic.
We schedule a date, time and I get a pizza, some giveaways and let people know that it’s happening.
And we’ve got an Innovation Lab! It’s that simple.
For me, it’s less about how many people come to the event, but more about educators connecting and sharing. Our district is very geographically spread out so it’s always fun to get people from different schools together to share their ideas. Many times someone is completely unaware of what’s happening less than eight miles down the road in a neighboring school and more surprised to find out how much it can help them!
This Innovation Lab was facilitated by Sally Hayes (@skhmustang) and was all about where to start when thinking about taking your teaching and learning outside. Lots of resources were shared and some great questions about how to take our existing curriculum out of the classroom.
Next year I’m hoping other educators take advantage of the concept and throw some topics out there for us to support. I truly believe it is small things like this that lead to big changes and growth.