Our Innovation Journey

After the privilege of working with Christine Klynen this summer, I'm thrilled to begin a journey with my staff to be more intentional with our instructional practices that allow our students to be more innovative and creative. Therefore, I believe that our school's innovation journey is a transformative process marked by progressive shifts in educational practices, technology integration, and a commitment to fostering creativity and adaptability. This journey will involve the following key stages:

Vision and Commitment: We established a forward-looking vision that emphasizes the importance of innovation in education and developed an innovation team that includes administrator, classroom teachers, paras, and coaches.

Assessment and Planning: I worked with Christine to assess and plan which learning elements are important for each grade level and based on that assessment, a strategic plan is developed, outlining specific goals, timelines, and resource allocations for innovation initiatives and/or support throughout the school year.

Professional Development: Our first year educators will engage in ongoing professional development to enhance their skills in incorporating innovative teaching methods and technology into the curriculum, while faculty meetings are used to provide opportunities for all staff to collaborate, plan, and design lessons/units that promote critical and innovative thinking. Additionally, it allows time for teachers to develop activities that encourage risk-taking and embracing new educational technologies in their classrooms.

Technology Integration: We are working to systematically integrate technology, such as interactive devices, educational apps, and collaborative platforms, into our students' learning activities. The emphasis is placed on using technology as a tool to enhance student engagement, personalized learning, and the development of 21st-century skills.

Student-Centric Approaches: We need to prioritize student-driven learning experiences, encouraging inquiry-based projects, collaborative problem-solving, and creativity. Additionally, we should value students' input and allow their interests to guide the development of creative and innovative learning experiences in the classrooms.

Celebration of Success: So far, some of our students' achievements and successes resulting from innovative initiatives are celebrated and shared within the school community. These students would come to my office to be recognized and rewarded for their efforts or share their presentations in the classrooms, which allow them to not only celebrate their success but also to practice their public speaking skills.

Cultivation of a Sustainable Innovation Culture: We are in the beginning stages of embedding innovation as a core element of our educational culture. These ongoing efforts focus on maintaining a dynamic, adaptive, and collaborative environment that supports continuous innovation.

Lastly, we developed the attached "Continuous Innovation Journal" for our teachers to capture the highlights and impact stories of their journey in this first year as we set our goal on becoming an Apple Distinguished School.


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Posted on January 16, 2024

Thank you for sharing insights into your innovation journey. We have been an ADS since 2014 -- we have loved the journey of continuous innovation. Your last point about cultivating a sustainable innovation culture is so important. We have found that innovation...or an innovation/creative mindset...becomes part of our everyday. The iterative process is commonplace. This keeps us moving forward.

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