Well, I didn’t make it happen… Genius Hour/Passion Projects in my 4th grade classroom this year, that is. It was a goal I had back in the fall. I’m definitely not crossing it off though or calling it quits. It’s just one of those goals that haven’t happened yet. The culprits of timing (and time), experience, and know-how held me back a little. And while the inexactness of Genius Hour gives lots of freedom, it also stops me short a little since it’s so open-ended.
Here are some things I’m keeping in mind as I hang on to this learning springboard that intrigues me:
- It will look different every time
- I have to give up control and let the kids shape it
- It will be short or long term. Or both!
- Welcome in new experiences – for student, teacher, parents
- KWL-H Chart works: What do you Know? What do you want to find out? What have you Learned? HOW will you share that learning? Creativity encouraged!
- And, one of the best – everyone learns.
I’m thinking of leading off next school year with a Summer Passion Project format.
This could be a great way to get to know new classmates, too.
Easy summer thought questions to help kids start their wheels turning:
What things did you do?
What places did you visit?
What sparked your interest this summer?
What did you learn that was new?
What would you like to investigate further?
How can you share with others?
Can it help others in some way?
Who would benefit hearing about your Passion Project?
Love the thought of offering time for kids to learn something out of the box and off the text books. If we feed the natural curiosities and talents students have, who knows where it may go?
The things I hear and read about have been inspiring. Many thanks to these leaders I’ll be referencing:
- Paul Solarz @paulsolarz Passion Time Resources
- Joy Kirr @joykirr Livebinder Resource
- Cybraryman @cybraryman1 #Genius Hour – #20% Time Page
- Ashley Ashcraft @ashleyashcraft Venture into 20% Time
Wish me luck in transferring some of my passion into Passion Projects! Please share other resources, blogs, or advice that you have. Thanks!