While it’s useful to keep the connected learning principles in mind while I teach, staying connected to people, watching what they do, and sharing what I do is really my key to learning. People make the principles work. I struggle with the idea of ever going back to school as a learner, but I learn from people in schools of all sorts all the time whenever they try something new and share what they and their students have done. I don’t care about grade-level, content area, or formal assessment. I look for what is most wild and brave in my feeds, and I try to put that in front of my students to keep them wild – to keep them from learning to fear system or to hold an undue regard for it. Ultimately, school, government, and society should be made of our kids, for them, and by them. By all of them. I can’t run a classroom that depends on me to coerce others and reward those most coercible. Making – as inquiry – has shown me that. Nothing that I suggest gets made quite as well as something a kid suggests for herself. I don’t just mean product. I mean affect, engagement, iteration, planning, and reflection, as well… We should stay connected to one another, but also to our kids as mentors and learners. We should teach one another and learn from one another and teach one another’s classes and learn from one another’s classes. I don’t think I would have felt this way unless I had seen my kids learn this way; I wouldn’t have invited my kids to learn this way if I didn’t experience it myself; I wouldn’t have learned this way without finding, following, and asking help from kind and determined people like you. Be connected; bring what you learn to your kids; invite those who seem interested to take up the same work; go back to your connections and model them to help the kids looking for something else.
Seriously, it doesn’t get much better than that.