Being energy

With a constant stream of alerts, a never ending to-do list and lightning fast internet connection, we often find ourselves in doing mode.

It’s rare that we take time to just be. Be with friends. Be in the moment. Be a human.

Instead of productivity habits, how might we develop being habits? Routines that allow us time to experience life as a human being, not a human doing. Meditation, yoga, running, cooking, swimming, hiking and more. They’re all ways to shift our energy from a constant state of doing into the more serene state of doing.

Do you feel the learning?

Counterintuitively, when we’re learning a lot, we sometimes don’t even realize it.

For example, in an experiential learning situation, people rate their personal learning lower than in a lecture-based situation. But, when tested later, the experiential context led to more learning than the lecture.

More simply, when we’re in a lecture, we think we’re learning more than we actually are. When we’re doing experiential learning, we think we’re learning less than we actually are.

I think the implications for education are clear: we need more experience-driven learning. Just like any short-term fix, a lecture may feel good at first, but in the long run, it’s not serving us like we thought it would.

Time to process

We all need a few minutes to think. In a smartphone-centric world, it’s so easy to grab your device instead of sitting with your own thoughts.

Resist the temptation.

Just let yourself be for a moment. Grab a notebook if you feel moved and capture what’s happening in your mind.

It’s easy to feel like the world is running a million miles an hour, but sometimes we just need a minute of decompression to slow things back down to normal.

Don’t think about the prototype

Get it out of your head! Make something. Do something. Show it to people.

It’s not going to be perfect yet, but by interacting with humans you will learn what needs to be fixed.

Enjoy each other more

Never a bad piece of advice.

It’s easier said than done, but next time you find yourself in a room with new people, cherish it. You will never be in that same room again.

For the room will change and you will too.

Learning is about

Curiosity

Wonder

Amazement

Failure

Growth

Passion

Exploration

Collaboration

Pride

Fear

Excitement

Sometimes it’s hard to remember that.

The empowerment of learning

When we set out to make our own t-shirts, people told us it was going to be hard.

We might waste money. We might ruin screens. It might look bad.

But, we tried anyways. We bought a few supplies online and watched a LOT of YouTube videos. After hours of watching random people on the internet explain screen printing, and some trial and error, we did it. Along the way we learned a LOT about chemistry, design, physics and more.

Putting the Dual School logo on a t shirt was one of the most empowering things I’ve done in the past few months. In retrospect, it probably took 6 hours between learning and taking action.

Coincidentally, a school day is about 6 hours long. There are 180 of them in a year and 4 of them in grades 9-12. I couldn’t remember a day of high school where I walked away feeling like I learned so much as I did in our 6 hour screen printing sprint. And I certainly don’t remember a day where I felt so empowered to create and express myself.

What could we do together to help more young people feel the sense of wonder that learning can bring?

You could do it

You might not do it quickly, or with a high level of quality.

But you could definitely finish.

And sometimes, that’s all that matters.

The tough work

Was it harder to hang up the paper or to design the learning experience?

There was certainly more failure when decorating the space than there was in the programmatic design.

But, great programmatic design is scarce. Whereas paper hangers are abundant.

The real question is, what’s easy for you that others would consider tough work?

Emerging technology…

Can feel scary. It’s overwhelming to think about blockchain, AI, VR and all of the implications.

These are giant, abstract concepts that aren’t easy to play with.

How do you prototype a blockchain?

While these spaces are often dominated by technologists, who else should enter the equation to advocate for all humans in the system?

As we’ve seen, technology is not neutral. We create technology based on who we are.

How might we embrace the potential for radical change while reducing bias and increasing access to “the future”?