As we are planning our curriculum for the upcoming year, we’re looking for some input.
We plan our curriculum from scratch every year. It’s intentional, not regurgitated. We consider our students: their interests, their levels, what’s relevant in the world, where are they at in their journey to this point, what do they already know, what do they need exposure to, their family values, etc. We often try to answer the question, “What do I wish I would’ve learned in school?”
The freedom in the way that we are structured allows us to respectfully and openly address a diverse variety of topics that may not be possible in traditional schools.
We have studied climate change, personal finance and investing, healthy lifestyles, and professionalism to name a few so far. This year with upcoming elections, we’re going to tackle government.
Not just the white washed version or only with our high schools students because it’s required, but with age appropriate exposure to truths while it’s relevant in the world for all of our students.
We know ideas change and evolve. Which is why we promote learning as a life long journey. Not just an open and closed, a to b, finish the test, it’s one way or the highway mentality. We simply look to plant seeds.
We will investigate how our government started and how it operates, how governments around the world work, and how our students can play a role. While consistently revisiting critical thinking, credibility, and the empowerment of our students.
We have created a space where we can share personal truths and debate facts. We can have tough discussions and empathize. We can ask difficult questions; What do you think? What does the research show? Is that true? Why do you think that? Is there a bias present? What would you do differently?
Adolescents are wise. They’re at a time in their lives where they’re enlivened and want to feel like they’re being treated as equals. They are sensitive to injustice and are optimistic in their ability to impact change for the better. Combine that with teaching our young people skills like communication, creativity, and innovation and we really do believe our students will do the work in healthy ways to take the action that allows them to leave the world better than they found it.
So while it takes a whole lot of work to design new curriculum every year, we have dedicated teachers who know that it is worth it.
Now we’d like to turn to our community for input. If the young version of yourself, or young people today were listening, what’s one thing you wish you would’ve learned when you were young or in school?
Or even better, share a link in the comments to a source that you find credible or a community member that you think would be valuable when considering sharing ideas with young people about government, nationally or globally.
Thank you for helping plant the seeds.