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Teaching Science in the 21st Century: Innovation Leadership in Schools

There’s been incredible progress in the past few years with individual, cutting-edge teachers making some incredible gains in innovations like #geniushour, project-based learning, design thinking, the maker movement, and more more more. But how do we SCALE those kinds of innovations wider throughout our schools and throughout the education system? Starting from discussions on Twitter and in our GOA course on Coaching Innovation, Maggie Powers and I have been on a kick about supporting innovation leadership in education…

When our SXSWedu core conversation on exactly that topic – Scaling Innovation in Schools – was accepted, we knew we had our work cut out for us… We co-moderated two separate twitter chats leading up to the conference, one on #dtk12chat and one on #isedchat, to begin building our ideas and lexicon. Our core conversation went excellently: you can find our session resources here and Maggie’s reflections here. Over the course of SXSWedu, I also had at least a dozen separate conversations about what innovation leadership means for advancement of K-12 education. (There are also great conversations happening in the comments here, so this idea is still evolving. Please continue contributing!)

(Another resource for such school innovation leaders is this amazing eBook by David Culberhouse: Scaling Creativity and Innovation.)

My ultimate goal was to pull together all the ideas from our different conversations to craft a “job description” that could serve as a template for building innovation leadership in any school, and potentially even use in defining my own job description as I move into exactly this sort of role in my school (although my job also includes curation of our makerspace, which isn’t discussed here).


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