2014 Youth Summit

Our annual Youth Summit is probably my favorite event of the year – seeing all those young people come together to learn about a new way to “do school” is always inspiring and never fails to give me hope for the future! I was going to write a summary of the Youth Summit for this blog, but Carolyn Reeves passed this comment along to me when she was going through the evaluations of the day.  It was anonymous so we’re unable to let you know which of the wonderful students who attended the Summit penned it, but I had to pass it along. After reading it, if you would like more student perspectives from the Summit, I invite you to take a look at our newest video – a little piece we put together from a “photo booth” we set up that day. Enjoy! ~ Laura Vitale

I really loved hearing everybody else’s perspective on what personalized learning is, which I think is awesome because if we all had the same idea on what it was, then personalized learning wouldn’t even exist. Hearing what everybody else had to say broadened my understanding and views on what should be included in personalized learning.

I think that it was really neat how we all wrote our own definition of personalized learning, then we got to share out what we thought it was and got to hear everybody else’s idea. It gave me more ideas on how to improve our school and where our school should inspire others. I really believe that more schools should start and switch gears into more of a student-based focused. Every student should be able to pick their own classes, teachers, learning environments, etc. to engage them more so that what they are learning is what they want to learn, and how they are learning the material is totally geared towards that specific student so that they are not totally bored or too overwhelmed, but they can do it but not without a challenge.

I think that if students are able to create their own guidelines and goals, they will feel more obligated to complete them because I know from experience that if you are going to complete a goal, it should be a goal set by yourself, not your teacher because you know yourself best. If you make goals for yourself that you know you can reach, but still challenging yourself, you will be more likely to reach those goals. Also, if you don’t reach those goals, the only person you are failing is yourself. If you fail your teacher by not reaching the goals that she/he set for you, you won’t feel too disappointed, but if you fail to reach the goals that you set for yourself you will be more disappointed.

I think that if you kept the same teachers with the same class for that group of students the entire time at that school, the teacher will get to know you on a more personal level and the teachers start to learn how each particular student learns.