December 31st, 2011

What Schools Can Learn From Google, IDEO, and Pixar

The country’s strongest innovators embrace creativity, play, and collaboration — values that also inform their physical spaces.
  • Spaces designed for learners that facilitate many modes of learning from individual quiet study to group performance and everything in between.
  • Spaces that allow for, and promote, creativity, play and collaboration for students and teachers
  • Spaces that create and express community
  • Spaces that are learner-friendly, comfortable, aesthetically pleasing and flexible.
These are the ideas that are shaping our thinking about space at PDS.
And of course - we can always learn from kindergarten about project based learning, interdisciplinary thinking and creative and imaginative play. Sometimes we forget what we have always known about what works best!
There’s a nice bit about bloxes in the article.

A community about to build or rehab a school often creates checklists of best practices, looks for furniture that matches its mascot, and orders shiny new lockers to line its corridors. These are all fine steps, but the process of planning and designing a new school requires both looking outward (to the future, to the community, to innovative corporate powerhouses) as well as inward (to the playfulness and creativity that are at the core of learning).

In many ways, what makes the Googles of the world exceptional begins in the childhood classroom — an embrace of creativity, play, and collaboration. It was just one year ago that 1,500 CEOs identified creativity as the number-one leadership competency in our complex global marketplace. We can no longer afford to teach our kids or design their schoolhouses the way we used to if we’re to maintain a competitive edge. In looking at various exemplary workplaces such as IDEO, Google, and Pixar, we can glean valuable lessons about effective educational approaches and the spaces that support them.



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    Really cool
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An independent pre-k - 12th school serving students in the mid-Hudson Valley