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Mount Vernon Institute for Innovation

19 Oct 2016

PBL Entry Events – Curriculum Reflections

By: Nicole Martin, Head of Learning and Innovation | Lower School My favorite description of project-based learning comes from Heather Wolpert-Gawron’s elevator pitch in her article “What the Heck is Project-Based Learning?” “PBL is the act of learning through identifying a real-world problem and developing its solution. Kids show what they learn as they journey through the unit, not just at the end.” Students at Mount Vernon Presbyterian School wrestled with real-world problems this week as three Lower School grade […]

11 Oct 2016

Design Movement | The Post w/ Andy Saberioon

On The Post, Andy has the opportunity to ask Brett a few questions. Andy Saberioon, Co-Founder of PledgeCents joins Design Movement to discuss the unique (crowd)fundraising design model developed to support educators throughout the US. Design Movement is a podcast of the Mount Vernon Institute for Innovation. Connect with Brett on Twitter – @jbrettjacobsen www.mvifi.org www.mountvernonschool.org

08 Oct 2016

Iterative Instruction

By T.J. Edwards (Cross-posted on my personal blog, Planting T’s) Time flies when you are having fun! I launched the Technology, Engineering, and Design (TED) course 2 years ago. The curriculum, my teaching style, and the space(s) have changed significantly since then – largely in response to my students’ feedback. Because TED is a one semester elective, I have had a chance to test 4 prototypes. I’ve tried engineering themes (GIS, Environmental Engineering, Product design). I’ve tried different projects (architecture & construction, […]

04 Oct 2016

Okorie Johnson: Ok Cello at fuse16

Encountering failure is often the reality of those who pursue their dreams. Fear and depression could be obstacles, but they also could be catalysts for new songs formed deep in our identities. Okorie Johnson is a storyteller and cellist known as Ok Cello. In his live performance and MoVetalk he tells his story of how seven notes changed everything for him. (Filmed at MVIFI fuse16, June 15, 2016.)

29 Sep 2016

How WE Work – Strengths-based Leadership

I frequent the “How I Work” tag on lifehacker. Some find the habit odd. Why would I care about how people choose to set up their app screen or what productivity tool they use? The means by which we choose to stay productive is important to me because I believe we are getting a glimpse into how people step into the complexity of working with teams and collaborating as the workplace becomes flatter and more disaggregated. If I were asked, […]

27 Sep 2016
24 Sep 2016

New School Model that Will Transform Education: Student as Designer & Community Partner as Client

By Meghan Cureton Using design briefs as a primary means of project curation is still new to iDiploma. Last year we launched our first, full-scale design brief (you can read about it here), and this year, we have quadrupled the number of design briefs just for the fall. It’s exciting. It’s overwhelming. And it is so incredibly empowering to our students. The fact that they had clear, measurable success with their first brief has them fired up to do more […]

16 Sep 2016

Challenging Assumptions: Grade Reporting Timeline

What conditions and characteristics of school do we simply assume are engrained parts of the system? You know, those things about school that we take for granted are just baked into the structure of school. During the 2016-17 academic year (there is one of those assumptions, right?), I plan to post a series of blog entries about these assumptions along with a few ideas and questions about how we might challenge them. Why am I interested in thinking about and […]

08 Sep 2016

pHail: Learning through Persistence

By Jim Tiffin Jr (Cross-posted on my personal blog, Building Capacity) “I have not failed. I have just found 10,000 ways that will not work.” -Thomas Edison. Most educators are familiar with this quote. Most of the time, I suspect it was used to motivate students to “try, try, try again.”  At least, that’s how it was used with me – merely as an encouragement that if I just simply tried more, I’d get it. In reality, it is much more […]

28 Aug 2016

Backwards Design

By Meghan Cureton (Originally posted on my personal blog,  I Wonder…) The primary way we organize the learning that happens in Innovation Diploma is by using problems or design briefs as the framework. I am not talking about a typical “project” – I am talking about a real, client-delivered design brief that is high stakes because it’s truly a problem that needs solving. To open the year, we decided to deliver our own design brief that has slightly lower stakes than one […]

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