I stumbled upon this concept while reading Edutopia, Why “20% Time” is Good for Schools for some “flipping classroom” work. It brought me back to a Google visit I had a couple of years ago in Cambridge. I remember how powerful Stephen Vinter said “20% time” was to each and every person at Google. So why not implement it in our classroom?
What is Genius Hour? It is giving students time to explore their passions, their questions and their creativity. As I learned in June when many students came to me asking for their laptop as soon as possible, we already have many students who are pursuing their interests in their own time. But why not foster that inquiry in school?
Daniel Pink defines Genius Hour in the following way, “Each week, employees [students, in our case] can take a Genius Hour — 60 minutes to work on new ideas or master new skills.” (Pink 2011). (See Pink’s Ted Talk about motivation)
Here are some comments that educators who have tried it, made earlier this month. Follow this link to see the impact it can make on all student learning.
Here a couple of videos that inspired me to float this idea through this post.
- Follow Your Passion: Denise Krebs
- TMB Panyee FC short Film: TMB
- Rethinking Learning: MacArthur Foundation
- Why I Hate School but Love Education: Spoken Word
There are many resources out there to get you started. I thought this was a good time to begin thinking about the possibility of adding it to your classroom sometime this year. Let me know your thoughts.