#iste2016 Mindsets and Classroom Management for Making and Inventing in Every Classroom

Presentation Resources

Making mindsets

The third panel I’ll be moderating this ISTE is full of some of the best in the business of people who are making and inventing. As with the sketchnoting slides I shared earlier, it will be best to see this in person, but so many of you can’t be here at ISTE 2016 in Denver! […]

Sketchnoting Superstars Panel from #iste2016

Slides and Resources

IST 2016 Sketchnoting Panel

Sketchnoting is a fascination for me. So, ISTE was a dream for me. What if we got some of the best in sketchnoting together to share their secrets and how this applies to education? Well, we submitted and it is happening today!Today, June 29 at 8:30 am at the ISTE 2016 conference, I’ll be moderating […]

Blended Learning Slides and Resources #iste2016

Presentation from the panel Monday, July 27 at 8:30 am

This morning at ISTE Tom Arnett, Jon Bergmann, Mike Gwaltney, Aaron Sams, Stephanie Sandifer, and Jerry Obermyer all did an incredible job discussing blended and flipped learning. Shell Terrell shared the session on Periscope. (watch here) I tried to upload these slides to ISTE, but they only take 5MB of files and this file is […]

How Innovative Educators Observe, Reflect, and Share

The Innovator's Mindset with George Couros

8-Characteristics-of-the-Innovators-Mindset (1)

Many teachers say they don’t have time to connect. I live and breathe that feeling. However, when I’m down, sometimes an idea on Twitter or a suggestion on Facebook turns my day around. If there is one thing that will make you completely irreplaceable as a teacher, it would be your network. Your network is […]

What One Teacher Did When He Realized His Kids Weren’t Learning

How an Award Winning Teacher Went from Failure to Fantastic

failing to fantastic

When he started teaching, high school Spanish teacher, Matt Miller had a dirty secret: His students couldn’t speak Spanish. He didn’t want anyone to know. But he came to a breaking point. Learn what Matt did in a fit of frustration and the incredible results his students achieved. Matt says teachers shouldn’t mindlessly run through the curriculum […]

8 Secrets of a Great Language Teacher

Secrets from Language Teacher Isil Boy

8 secrets of great language teachers

Teaching language is a challenge. Isil Boy from Turkey teaches students how to speak English. Today, she shares her secrets for helping language students learn. She also shares her tricks and tips for using technology in the classroom. These secrets apply to every teacher and classroom. Isil [email protected] as a lecturer at the Faculty of […]

A Peek in My Week: Games, Mattering, Questions, Laughter & Learning WHEW!

Level Up a Little Bit Every Day

a Peek in my week

Sometimes as you teach others, you end up changing yourself. It is happening so much lately to me. Here’s a peek. Game based keyboarding. My keyboarding classroom is completely game based using ClassCraft (thanks, Shawn Young) and the kids run to class. They love it. I’ve never seen anything like it, and I’m thrilled (they are too.) […]

How Any Teacher Can Use Lee Sheldon’s Multiplayer Classroom Model

Powerful Pedagogies for Every Teaching Professional

Star Trek script writer and professional game author Lee Sheldon has designed his entire college course as a game. His book The Multiplayer Classroom: Designing Coursework as a Game is a favorite of many game based learning experts. Quizzes and tests are fighting evil. Students earn experience points for coming to class. Student study groups are called […]

8 ways to spark problem finders

 Questions should ignite learning. Curious kids never get bored. But why do young kids ask more than 100 questions a day and by middle school, they’ve stopped asking?

Recently when I talked with George Couros, author of the Innovator’s Mindset, he said,

“Do kids see problems and see themselves as solvers of those problems?”

Warren Berger, author of A More Beautiful Question came on my radar this past Monday, when Angela Maiers shared his book on #MatteringMonday.

As I looked at Warren’s blog, I found this conversation with Richard Saul Wurman, creator of the original TED talks:

“In school, we’re rewarded for having the answer, not for asking a good question,” Wurman pointed out. Which may explain why kids—who start off asking endless “why” and “what if” questions—gradually ask fewer and fewer of them as they progress through grade school. (emphasis mine)

In the Newsweek article, the Creativity Crisis, they grappled with why US creativity scores are declining and found,

Overwhelmed by curriculum standards, American teachers warn there’s no room in the day for a creativity class. Kids are fortunate if they get an art class once or twice a week. But to scientists, this is a non sequitur, borne out of what University of Georgia’s Mark Runco calls “art bias.” The age-old belief that the arts have a special claim to creativity is unfounded. When scholars gave creativity tasks to both engineering majors and music majors, their scores laid down on an identical spectrum, with the same high averages and standard deviations. Inside their brains, the same thing was happening—ideas were being generated and evaluated on the fly. (emphasis mine)

Quite simply, we have to help our students find questions. And asking questions belongs in EVERY SINGLE CLASS. Not just “art” class or “music” class but math and history and science and literature. ALL OF THEM.

We have to encourage students to ask novel, creative questions that they cannot answer on Google.

As Angela Maiers says, we also have to ask students questions that show that they matter.

The Questions We Must Ask

  • What if we as a human race and society are not defined by our answers but what kind of questions we ask?
  • What if the next time you show a video or have a reading assignment, you asked students to create one amazing question and turn it in?
  • What if curiosity, question asking, and question seeking became part of our daily classroom routine?
  • What would school look like then?

Feel Free to Take the 8 Ways to Spark Problem Finders and ask these questions.

I made this infographic accompanying George’s show mentioned in the opener, but I’ve started getting messages from principals and others who are printing it out and putting it in break rooms and even in bathroom stalls for teachers to see. I have been asked for the PDF as it is easier to print, and made it for you. I hope this will spark conversations not just on problem finders but also the questions we encourage students to ask.

We need to spark problem finders. We need to encourage students to ask questions.

Download the Problem Finders PDF

I Dare You to Share your Beautiful Questions, here, on Twitter and beyond. 


8 Types of Blended Learning According to Research

Design Your Classroom for Maximum Learning

Blended learning happens when you mix the face to face classroom with online learning. While flipped classroom is a form of blended learning, it is not the only one. Today, researcher Thomas Arnett breaks down the eight types of blended learning and explains how they are being used to improve student outcomes. Listen now. If […]