Thursday, September 07, 2006

Welcome to Education On The Edge!

Job: advisor (i.e. teacher) at an online, project-based school.

My School: EdVisions Off-Campus High School, in Minnesota

School Website:

Welcome to my blog. I'm very new at this, so I'll probably make lots of mistakes- but hey, we're all new at something! Since I work at an online school I'm trying to learn about this new way to communicate. I've had a personal computer since 1982 (not the same one, obviously!).....but don't tell the tech person at my school- you certainly wouldn't know it by my skills.

About 15 years ago I made a very unusual decision for a teacher: I decided to never teach anyone anything they didn't want to know. I was sick of fighting to "get information in" to students who- didn't want it, wouldn't remember it, and would never need to remember it. It just didn't make sense anymore. I wanted to help create "win win" situations where the kids and I were on the same side, where we didn't struggle against each other and I didn't feel like a policewoman.

Since then it's been interesting. Some of the things I've done:
-homeschooled- helping my kids learn things they were interested in
-taught music lessons-teaching little 5th graders how to play the trumpet or drums is a kick :)
-taught classes at the local park- from preschool music to piano lessons to summer daycare
-done a little tutoring to help raise kids' basic skills (I quit this when it became apparent that most of the time they weren't interested in MORE work on reading, math...)
-taught summer community ed classes such as: Bubbles and Goo for little kids, Harry Potter classes, music classes, etc.

5 years ago I started working in charter schools here. I worked at Minnesota New Country School, a project-based school where students designed projects, carried them out, and then got credit for their learning. Then last year our online school started. It's a blast!

Topics to expect here: alternative education, democratic education, project-based education, online learning, personally tailored education, homeschooling, psychosynthesis, subpersonalities, nonviolent communcation, body-centered psychology.

Invitation to join the conversations: I'm excited about "meeting" you all- learning what else is out there!

Kids and adults are all invited to join in the conversation!

Karen Locke

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