Special Premium Early Bird Rates are Now, for 2019 CWI Summer Institutes

CWI’s 2019 Institutes on Place Based Service-Learning and Sustainability
—Los Angeles, California and Burlington, Vermont

PLAN AHEAD 2019 Institute Registrations are Now!
Register Now w/ a Special PREMIUM Early Bird Rate • Space is Limited

Join K-16 and community educators, from across the U.S. and international schools, for a week of expert training, and inspiring curriculum design work. A unique opportunity to dig deep into place based service-learning and sustainability and how to use it most effectively with your students. This is your opportunity to move your classroom curriculum or school program to the next level. learn more

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The Time to Change Education is Now . . .


Technology is rapidly creating a new world. But we must teach the next generation to “live smart.”

Photo by Aaron Burden on Unsplash

We all love technology.

We all come to depend on technology. And we all want to have the latest technologies. Most of us feel that technology has improved the quality of our lives and most people would argue that technology has made the world a better place by improving health or reducing social exclusion and poverty.

But we also fear technology.

Some people feel they have become addicted to technology. They think that their computer or smartphone has come to dominate their lives.

More generally, we are afraid of losing control of new technologies. We worry about declining privacy in a sensor- and data-oriented world. We don’t like how algorithms are making more of “our” choices and, by doing so, dictating our lives and depriving us of freedom. We are afraid that emerging technology (such as artificial intelligence) will deepen inequalities or, even, take over the world.

A machine-dominated future is not attractive for many people.

And then there are those emerging near-future technologies that we don’t know what to make of. Consider developments that might significantly increase our life expectancy, allow us to clone ourselves, live on other planets, etc.

Joy. Fear. Uncertainty. Three very different attitudes towards new technologies. And, at different times, each of us has felt all of these emotions. We are building a new world that depends on technology but, most of the time, we don’t know what to make of that technology.

Continue reading

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Changing Teacher Education Changes Everything


I have been threatening to write something on this topic for some time, and a timely snow day have given me the opportunity to get a solid start on things. If you have read anything I have published or responded to in the past year, you will have noticed that I have identified how we develop new teachers as a critical element to transforming the educational experience for students.

In looking at what is actually makes up a teacher education program currently, I have stayed within my own context here in Ontario. I am curious about teacher formation in other places, and I welcome comments and reflections on your experiences. Continue reading

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Students Applying Economics Through Campus Place-Based Learning



Place-based learning is a pedagogy where the local community and built environment are used as vehicles for learning. In previous semesters, the author has utilized place-based learning by connecting business and economics students with local businesses. This paper discusses a new application of place- based learning, where the place is the college campus.

In partnership with the Auxiliary Services division on campus, students were tasked with analyzing a campus vending machine in an effort to provide healthier snacks. This task encompassed various aspects of economics such as demand planning, pricing, variable costs, and profitability.

Results are presented in terms of student solutions and feedback from the Auxiliary Services division. Student comments on the project are also discussed. The results show that campus place-based learning has great potential for motivating students and engaging them in producing relevant work. Continue reading

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A “Letter” to “Millennials”


In my various “gigs,” I am involved in a lot of hiring decisions. At the university, at the large multinational where I also work, and at my wife’s restaurant.

And like many employers, we look to the younger generation — especially “Millennials” — to bring energy, new ideas and help us remain “relevant.”

But, recently, I have been somewhat “disappointed” with the “quality” of the candidates.

We invite someone for an interview who looks strong on paper (good school and grades, good references, and good experience). But, when we meet them, they are not what we expected or wanted.

This might sound a little strange, but I often feel that I am talking to people who are ten years older than I am and not fifteen years younger. Too many “Millennials” — for a variety of complex reasons — are not living the “Millennial Life.” Continue reading

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Community Outreach in Texas: Students Apply Their Skills in the Real World


Picture a group of students storming a council meeting, except they aren’t there to protest — they’re there to run the meeting. One student, witnessing the needs of the elderly and handicapped in her community, creates a handyman organization. Another student, noticing a social gap between special needs students and others, creates a horticulture program and greenhouse garden curriculum to help forge new friendships. Continue reading

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We’re Changing the Educational Paradigm

Just do it today, REGISTER w/ a PREMIUM EARLY BIRD RATE. Our teachers are changing the world, one student at a time. Bring yourself or your school cohort-team. learn more: https://bit.ly/2pjtPRp

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The Art of “Reinventing Yourself” In an Automated World!

Why Everyone Must Master this Skill


Photo by Benjamin Davies on Unsplash

Last week, I wrote about the importance of “self-learning.” I identified six elements — what I call the “6Cs” of the cycle of self-learning— that are necessary to achieve this goal.

The piece received some great comments. A couple of additional “Cs” were suggested (“curiosity” and “criticizing”) and the importance of “un-learning” was also mentioned.

This feedback helped me to realize that “self-learning” is part of a much bigger challenge:

In a fast-changing world, everyone needs to live in a “permanent state of transition” or “reinvention.”

We need to continuously adapt ourselves to unlock the opportunities and meet the challenges of our new technology-driven world.

Take automation and the future of work, for example. Continue reading

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The Concept is Love

We interviewed CWI Institute alum Sean Lloyd, Chief Engagement Officer at Paolo Freire Charter School in Newark, New Jersey. Sean speaks with great eloquence on our need for fidelity to what we really believe as educators.. learn more: https://bit.ly/1PCRv6u


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The Table of Knowledge: A Place for Empowerment


The success and sustainability of our work as educators includes finding ways to connect and work together. Higher education typically consists of silos housed within departments, colleges, and schools, across the campus.

Although encouraged to create a unified and welcoming environment for students and faculty, classrooms and offices remain isolated places where we increase our skills, knowledge, and dispositions through teaching and research. We are challenged to understand the pedagogy of teaching and navigate the community system on our own.  Continue reading

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Education is the Key to a Better Future, But…

“We Must TEACH Them How to LEARN!”


Photo by Martin Sanchez on Unsplash

Becoming a better writer is a never-ending process of self- learning and discovery.

I started to write a piece per week more than a year ago. The reason I do it is simple: I love the opportunity for “self-learning” that an online platform offers. In a fast-changing digital world, it’s essential to continually “test” yourself and reflect on what it is that you are doing.

I am a teacher. So, it is not surprising that “education” is one of the themes that I love to think about. I’ve already written several pieces about how education is disrupted in a digital age. In these pieces, I have mainly focused on the “digital impact” on the content, teaching methods, and the role of educators.

The responses indicate that most of us agree that in an age of “smart machines,” education must change. In particular, “soft-skills” and creativity become extremely important. Continue reading

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