Dare to Care

construct, create, communicate, collaborate, and think critically

12/Mar/2013
by Denise Krebs
9 Comments

Hope, Engagement, Well-Being, and Genius Hour

I happened to see a tweet from @mrstg recently. She had retweeted @bundtjd message below:


There was “much to think about from this presentation” by Brandon Busteed, education director of Gallup. In the speech, he addresses business leaders about the future of education.

Early in the speech he asked the listeners what they remember about their best teacher. According to people surveyed, teachers care about us. In addition, they know what makes each of their students tick, so they individualize for their students. They are also relational. These are the important things people think of when they think of the teachers that made a difference to them.

He says we neutralize the best teachers because we continually take away their ability and time to care, individualize, and relate. We ask teachers to meet different objectives — those measured by standardized tests, rather than care, individualization and relationships.

The future of education is not about knowledge. We can’t compete on knowledge. “The cost of knowledge is trending toward free,” Busteed said. For instance, MIT’s courses are all available online for FREE. Though you can’t get a degree by taking them, you certainly have access to all the knowledge.

If we want students to be successful, we don’t drive them toward success by working on standardized tests only. In fact, there is a negative correlation in the 30 or so countries that took both the GEM (Global Entrepreneurship Measure) and PISA (Program for International Standardized Assessment) tests.

Schools with an over-emphasis on standardized tests neutralize entrepreneurial spirit. Many entrepreneurs and innovators drop out of school or college because of that — Mark Zuckerberg, John D. Rockefeller, Oprah Winfrey, Thomas Edison, Walt Disney, Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Ellen DeGeneres, Ted Turner to name a few.

According to Busteed, standardized tests can only account for one-third of the success of our students. Hope, he says, is actually a strategy when it comes to school success. We can help students have hope.

As educators we need to get out of the knowledge business and into the learning business. Busteed goes on to say that hope, engagement and well-being account for as much as one-third of the variance in student success. (That’s one-third — the same as standardized tests!)

We can take at least some of our time to give students choice in what they are doing in school.  Genius hour gives students (and educators) hope, engagement and well-being. Read what Melina, a high school senior, says about this kind of learning:

Read more of Melina’s beautiful words on her blog post.

In this age where knowledge is ubiquitous, and no longer belongs to the teacher to dispense during lessons, school needs to change. We need to inspire students to become lifelong learners. Genius hour can begin to do that.

Busteed suggests students have these three rights. They should be able to come into school every single day and say YES to:

Brandon Busteed said every student should be able to say YES to these.

Would your students be able to say YES to those rights?
Don’t we owe it to them to let them say YES?

16/Feb/2012
by Denise Krebs
4 Comments

Goal #4 – Reveal Their Strengths

Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.

–from A Return to Love by Marianne Williamson

This is a timely goal for me. I had a tough week.  It’s tough to be a junior higher. I remember those years, and this week I was reminded of them. My junior high students need to believe in their strengths. I long to convince them they are meant to shine–each one of them.

  • They don’t have to put others down to find their own genius.
  • They don’t have to plagiarize because they are afraid to do their own creating and producing.
  • They don’t have to avoid, ignore, or do worse to those who are different than they are.
  • They don’t have to hide who they really are to be accepted by the majority.

I want to reveal their strengths so they believe they are “brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous.” There is room for all the children of God to shine. I want them to believe it.


Today I have no answers on how to do that.

Goal #4: Reveal Their Strengths from #30 Goals Challenge 2012

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