KnowledgeCornerstone » Ramblings from an educator and life-long learner

Genius Hour Introduction

Today I introduced Genius Hour.  I was so excited I could hardly sleep knowing that I was going to come in and tell my students they could work on anything they wanted to on Fridays!  Seriously, before the first class, my heart was racing like the first day of school!  (I am a little nerdy like that…or passionate about teaching like that.)

I started them off with a little pep talk from #iamkidpresident.  I just love his personality!

I told the students our new motto is
“What are you going to make the world AWESOME?!?!?!”

Then I shared this video that I made to give the instructions.

{{{Insert blank stares}}}

I told them that I wanted them to come up with a passion project. We discussed the companies like 3M and Google that allow their workers time to develop their own things. When I asked the students why they think those companies did that, a few angels suggested it had to do with making more money off of someone else’s ideas. smart-aleck

So I then asked if there was anything that any of them had ever wanted to or learn before but they haven’t. (Of course I am talking to students who have been on this plant for a mere 11 years…how would they know what is out there???)

{{{more blank stares}}}

At this point I told them that I had always wanted to write a book. When I was in middle school I had started writing one in a spiral. I even filled the entire spiral up! And wouldn’t you know it, J.K. Rowling beat me to my book! (In all seriousness, I could have written the Harry Potter series. That is totally my imagination.)

We watched this video to piggy back off of the idea that someone else always takes your good ideas.

But these 2 videos seemed to get the most attention. The students LOVED them. (*Many of them told me they watched the videos again or with siblings because they thought they were so cool. Especially Tom Thum, several of my students now make these strange noises throughout the day.)

After going through all of that, I told the students to think about something they would like to learn about. They needed to find a passion to work on during genius hour. I was not quite as excited as when they walked in the door. We will see how next week goes.

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