We asked our teachers the following question: What is a major barrier to designing innovative learning experiences for learners in the Senior Year’s Classroom? Consistently, the answer is TIME. How do we get around the time barrier? How do we provide teachers and students the time to design deeper learning experiences? One possibility we are trying here at the SRSS is to change the schedule for one week each semester. During this week, each 62-minute period becomes one full day. We call this Innovation Week.
Innovation Week allows teachers to spend a full day with each class. It allows time to teach and learn differently. Teachers are encouraged to use the day to develop the school goal – to pursue meaningful learning that combines sophisticated content with deeper learning skills. We use the extended contact time to build relationships with learners, as well as teachers in different subject areas. It is possible to see Culinary Arts teaming with Welding, Industrial Arts teaming with Flex Ed, and Science working with Esthetics. Innovation Week allows us the time to design deeper learning experiences, such as extended labs, inquiry, project-based learning, guest speakers, displays, performances, service projects, and learning trips. Spending an entire day with one class is a rare opportunity in high school. We have been given quality uninterrupted time to create dynamic classroom culture and incredible learning experiences.