As chapter 7 of The Innovator’s Mindset winds to a close, George Couros takes his readers through a process he finds useful for creating a new vision for schools. He calls it “What if?”. It only took a few minutes for me to come up with my own “What ifs?”. In doing so, this thought experiment provided me with an opportunity to dream and think big. Most importantly, like George’s “What ifs?”, mine sit just outside the present, and capture the potential for change and innovation; they exist within the adjacent possible.
Like so many others, I see tremendous possibilities, but we need to continue to push for the conditions needed to turn these possibilities into reality. I implore those in leadership positions to reflect on their “What ifs?”, and then begin to establish the conditions needed for this transformation.
- What if when teachers opened the door to their classrooms, most of their colleagues ceased this opportunity for professional growth?
- What if schools didn’t teach subjects in isolated, subject-specific blocks of time?
- What if teachers took the time to question how their teaching actually reflects the world that we all live in, not just their students?
- What if all teachers created meaningful, relevant learning opportunities for students instead of resorting to worksheets? (This worksheet changed my life, said no student ever!)
- What if teachers didn’t wait for the PD to come to them, but tapped into the wealth of PD that can be brought to them when needed?