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Friday, October 17, 2014

Today was "THAT" Day and my HEART is Full Beyond Measure

You know, that day you need to really remind and reiterate why we do this crazy hard innovative work? Well, today was that day for me as a Next Generation Leader.  It was a morning exhibiting what can happen when we are willing to let go of the control and empower our students in the learning process.  A student presentation by our UNLOCK Class (students in grades 9-12 who desire to change the world, literally and very seriously) this morning in front of a group of administrators was the culmination of their classroom experience to date, hard work, and commitment and I cannot stop smiling.  It was just INCREDIBLE.  

Now, there are dark days as our UNLOCK group has begun to reference them and we do not love them, but they happen.  Rarely, but they do happen.  Those days make you want to throw in the towel...but days like this when it comes together and you can see how much these students have accomplished in nine weeks is just nothing short of amazing! They have partnered with a village in Nicaragua with a mission and vision that shows just how serious Next Generation Learners are in their education.  Take a look at their project on their website at http://www.eisunlock.org/ and see for yourself.

These students are taking integrated English, Technology, and in some cases History for credit and showing the world of education anything really is possible. It is hard for me to even describe the pride I have for them and their work to begin and strive to achieve a goal that most would not even consider.  To see a classroom come to fruition that overcomes and offers those components many believe are the most important is encouraging:
  • Real-World Application
  • Use of In-Depth Inquiry to Solve Real Problems that Impact Real People
  • Personalization of Learning 
  • Soft Skill Integration: Communications, Presentations, Meeting Deadlines, etc.  
  • Flexible Classroom Structure
  • Collaboration (Virtually and In-Person)
  • Student Driven Standards Based Reporting (evidence 100% provided by students)
  • and the list could go on...of all the things we spout we want to see in our education, but seldom see it come to fruition...UNLOCK has fulfilled its name at Eminence Independent High School. 

I am  so proud of the UNLOCK student group as much for their academic achievements as I am for their willingness to serve and share in the field of education.  These students inspire me and others on a daily basis.  I 100% believe that Innovation and ACTION are two necessary components in education.   October 17, 2014 is a day that reminded me of why I chose to be at E! Children Matter.  I am PROUD of you for UNLOCKing ME!

Please see pictures below for the UNLCOK group in action! Smiles to all, Shannon Treece










1 comment:

  1. Amazing work by incredible students who have leaders and teachers who empower them. Thank you so much for this post & for previous opportunities to talk with these teens. Their passion for changing the world is obvious, and the fact that they are learning pertinent skills and content like this is inspiring to all of us in education.

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