When Melissa Hellwig and I give presentations and professional development sessions about 20% Time, Genius Hour and Project/Problem Based Learning, we usually have a curious and receptive crowd. We try to be thorough about WHY schools need to change to incorporate personalized learning and also show the template of our own program. Toward the end of our talk, we get questions about incorporating this philosophy into other situations and a call for more information on the subject. Most of the school districts where these teachers work do not provide any PD on 20% Time or PBL so these teachers are on their own to find relevant information. Teachers often want to be secure in what they are doing before taking that first step.
Because of the constant call for more information, I wrote Cultivating Genius: The Why and How of Creating a 20% Time Learning Environment. Last summer, I assembled all of the material that Melissa and I created and wrote the book in two parts. The first part is the "why" of 20% Time. It explores what schools have traditionally been and why we need to change education. The second part of the book is the "how" of 20% Time. It represents a step-by-step template of our own program that teachers can use as a model. I included the forms that we created and use and I also explained how everything works during the course of the year. Melissa contributed to the book as well. I included a powerful blog post that she wrote and she also created many of the documents that appear in the book. It is our hope that this book can be a springboard for more teachers to embrace the 20% Time model and ignite the passion for learning in their students. You can find the book here.