One factory building, seven teachers, and 100 students. It was an experiment to change education for the better. It was called a “ride-along,” a way to let teachers examine how students ages 18-24 tinkered and adjusted ideas to discover innovations. The ultimate goal was to develop new teaching models around these habits. But that’s not all; it was also The Future of Stuff or at least one part of the overall challenge.
The Future of Stuff is a 14-day challenge to any student who applied to take on an idea and explore ways to innovate and further customize it to his/her own personal needs. In each challenge students are provided materials, guides, and support, but each participant is allowed to create and achieve an end goal that applies to their own life and to the real world.
This idea seems very innovative, but how did it all begin? Project Breaker, a pioneering group looking to advance how students solve problems without hierarchy while receiving guidance and opportunity to find innovation, put it to the test. Their goal was to evolve each challenge from idea to opportunity with real business potential. And each new challenge that Project Breakers has introduced thus far has helped push students further and further in their ability to succeed in their challenges.
It is real world immersion projects like these that provide resources, rely on a personal drive to succeed, and offer endless value to students. Teachers can also learn greatly from how students interact with problems, find solutions, and create new innovative approaches to learning.
In the end, I believe that education as a whole can use what they learn to help mold a future of more productive learning situations that includes a much wider audience of students. It appears to be an exciting and fun step toward the future of education.