It’s been awhile! We’ve been busy of course since September 4th…spending time in the classroom we’ve been loaned by Milton District High School. We’ve been calling it the Active Room, our Sandbox, or most accurately the Demonstration Room. It’s been pitched as, eventually, a place where teachers and students from all pathways, subjects and panels can come and experience learning in different environments.
We’ve been meeting with various furniture vendors in an effort to bring in more variety to the classroom. It’s hard to imagine how to make school different if students are still arranged in rows of desks and are facing “the front” of the classroom. We’ve been looking at some of the non-negotiated norms of school and how we can push back against them, defronting our space so that all spaces become areas of learning is our first challenge. In the end, it is important to us to create a room that all teachers can see themselves and their students learning in.
Being new to our classroom space and new to Milton District, we knew that we wanted to do the work to build community with our coworkers and students as fast as possible. We had a few weeks of time before this space could truly function as a Demonstration Classroom, so we decided to open up our own Escape Room. The Escape Rooms at Milton District ran for the past two weeks and hosted students from all grades. It was amazing, while facilitating these rooms, to watch how creative thought can have a mind of its own. There were times when we could see great insight leaping between students as classes of 30 worked together to solve common problems. We love the act of completing an Escape Room because we see many parallels between them and the Global Competencies.
If you’ve been following along with The Shift for the past year you’ve probably noticed that we are communicating with you from a new platform. In addition to changing rooms, we are happy to be launching a new platform from which we will be documenting our journey. Hopefully at our new website you will find enough content to keep yourself asking “Why”. Too keep you coming back for more, we are also launching our new Podcast! In our podcast we hope to explore the small changes in practices that educators have made and the bigger changes that have followed.
We have big plans in the works for this year and we hope you will all continue to let us elevate and amplify your voices, all the while giving us the opportunity to play in your classrooms. Time to Shift!