Monday, April 15, 2013

Wednesday Interview - Breaking the Cycle of Students' Disengagement by Having Them Leave, to Learn

Join me Wednesday, April 17th, for a live and interactive FutureofEducation.com conversation with Elliot Washor and Charles Mojkowski on their new book, Leaving to Learn: How Out-of-School Learning Increases Student Engagement and Reduces Dropout Rates.

The first step to addressing the nation's dropout rate, Elliot and Charlie argue, is letting students "leave, to learn."  (From the book's description:) "It's an alarming fact: in the U.S., one student drops out of school every 12 seconds. Elliot Washor and Charles Mojkowski, both of Big Picture Learning, have a proven, innovative solution for stemming the flow of drop-outs and breaking the cycle of disengagement that leads up to it. It's called leaving to learn. Leaving to Learn helps us deeply understand the real reasons kids drop out and the essential conditions for productive learning that today's adolescents require. The authors then make a compelling argument: in order to retain students through to graduation, schools must offer experiences where students do some of their learning outside of school. With common sense 'rules of the road,' the authors offer nuts and bolts guidelines for implementing a high-quality Leaving to Learn program, including:examples of the many forms of out-of-school learning: internships, travel, community service, independent projects, and more seamlessly integrating students' outside learning with in-school curriculum assigning academic credit for out-of-school accomplishments."

Date: Wednesday, April 17th, 2013
Time: 5pm Pacific / 8pm Eastern (international times here)
Duration: 1 hour
Location: In Blackboard Collaborate (formerly Elluminate). Log in at http://www.futureofed.info. The Blackboard Collaborate room will be open up to 30 minutes before the event if you want to come in early. To make sure that your computer is configured for Blackboard Collaborate, please visit the support and configuration page.
Recording:  A full Blackboard Collaborate recording is at https://sas.elluminate.com/p.jnlp?psid=2013-04-17.0748.M.9E9FE58134BE68C3B413F24B3586CF.vcr&sid=2008350 and an audio mp3 recording is at http://audio.edtechlive.com/foe/leavingtolearn.mp3 and at http://www.futureofeducation.com.
Mightybell:  A Mightybell space with interview resources and to continue the conversation is at https://mightybell.com/spaces/44050.

Elliot Washor, Ed.D. is the co-founder and co-director of Big Picture Learning. He is also the co-founder of The Met Center in Providence, RI.

Elliot has been involved in school reform for more than 30 years as a teacher, principal, administrator, video producer, and writer. He has taught and is interested in all levels of school from kindergarten through college, in urban and rural settings, across all disciplines. His work has spanned across school design, pedagogy, learning environments, and education reform and is supporting others doing similar work throughout the world. Elliot’s interests lie in the field of how schools can connect with communities to understand tacit and disciplinary learning both in and outside of school. Elliot is deeply committed to imagining Big Picture Learning as a ‘do-think-do’ organization, and persistently pushes the boundaries of its design in order to continually innovate practice and influence in the world of education.

At Thayer High School in Winchester, N.H., Elliot’s professional development programs won an “Innovations in State and Local Government Award” from the Ford Foundation and the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. He has been selected as an educator to watch in Rhode Island and has recently been selected as one of the Daring Dozen – the Twelve Most Daring Educators in the World by the George Lucas Educational Foundation. His dissertation on Innovative Pedagogy and New Facilities won the merit award from DesignShare, the international forum for innovative schools.

Elliot lives in sunny San Diego with his wife and five dogs.

Charlie Mojkowski worked with Elliot Washor and Dennis Littky in creating Big Picture Learning and The Met School in Providence. He currently works with Elliot on developing new initiatives that refine and extend the Big Picture Learning design. Charlie has served as an independent consultant to education and business since 1976. He works primarily in the areas of school and curriculum improvement, leadership and organizational development, program evaluation, and applications of technology that support that work. Charlie designed, administered, and taught in a doctoral program in educational leadership; directed the Rhode Island Educational Leadership Academy; and served as Executive Director of the Rhode Island Association of School Principals.


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