Monday, February 10, 2014

Pitch Day for Germantown Academy MS 20 Time

On Thursday February 6th, 14 different faculty and staff at Germantown Academy took time from their schedules to view pitches and provide feedback to my 7th grade students on the 20 Time projects they were proposing to research and develop over the course of the second semester.

Students presented projects ranging in content from constructing a touch table to developing an app for sizing clothing remotely, from documenting changes in haute fashion to creating a vocabulary card game.

During this endeavor, students were challenged to "speak with authority" and practice their "confidence in expression" while presenting their proposals and answering questions about future refinements and final goals.

This opportunity for students to speak to an unknown group of guests was important for several reasons. First, it allowed them to present their ideas to individuals with a broad array of content and philosophical backgrounds. Second, the gallery presentation style forced students to speak quickly, concisely, and confidently about their research interests. Finally, it highlighted students' passions and allowed an opportunity to positively lend their voices to curricular development.

Tony Wagner, Educator in Residence at Harvard University's Innovation Lab, says "Innovators... can be those people who can be innovative even working within organizations, corporations, and non-profits. They are imbued with a purpose, style of behavior and attitude that allows them to create something original of value, make a difference, or change a process, service, system or way of thinking."

Certainly, students in my 7th grade History classes played the parts of innovators in their presentation this past Thursday!

Below, please find some unedited video of the students in action during 20 Time Pitch Day.

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