Are You an Innovator?

When you hear the word innovator, what or who do you think of? Before researching this term, the things that I thought of were inventor, scientist, movie director, and Dr. Phil. I would have never guessed that after my research that I can be one as well! I always thought of it as being someone who has accomplished something great, or one who is making a big difference in the world. I never really thought of it as being something that everyone could do. Something cool about being an innovator is that it is something that you can always do better. This started to get me thinking about how this could correlate to being in education!


PhotoCC: sopadenieve


PhotoCC: Anat Sifri

I am going into education simply because I want to help make a positive difference in children’s lives, and help give them tools to become successful in life. Becoming an innovator will really help with doing these things! George Couros wrote a blog post on becoming an innovator. It was really informational and included some great tips on what the journey of becoming an innovator should entail. Some of his tips included:

  1. Recognize obstacles


    PhotoCC: Isthisyou

  2. Ask yourself, “What is possible?
  3. Build upon what you already know
  4. Embrace and be open to new learning
  6. Challenge ideas
  7. Take risks!
  8. Utilize tools available to you
  9. Listen and learn from different perspectives

Couros also said something else that really stood out to me which was, “Isolation is the enemy of education.” This really got me thinking about how true this really is, and how many teachers isolate their students every day. Being in a classroom for 8 hours a day would drain anyone’s energy and participation level. I mean really, who wants to do that? A couple of 15 minute recess breaks really isn’t enough in my opinion. Being an innovator as a teacher would mean to take your students outside, have them experience new things and the material that they are learning about first hand. It also means showing your students what it is like to be an innovator and how fantastic it can be.

Another person who helped show me how to become a successful innovator is Will Richardson. He posted a concept on the internet that was something that all teachers should look at and understand: The Steep Unlearning Curve: The Ten Things We Need to Unlearn. Many people usually are thinking about what they should be learning instead of what they should unlearn. I feel that both are of equal importance. Richardson said in his 21st century teaching post that, “We need to unlearn the idea that every student needs to learn the same content, when really what they need to learn is how to self-direct their own learning.” Student’s will not be with teachers and their guardians forever, so it is crucial that they start to develop learning strategies to help them become more independent learners! In my opinion, that is a major concept to understand if you ever want to become an innovative teacher/person.

I really enjoyed reading Richardson’s and Couros’s takes on becoming an innovator, you should check them out too! I have embedded the links below.





6 thoughts on “Are You an Innovator?

  1. ashlynhansondiglit says:

    The ability to be able to think and learn on their own is a skill that is so important for us to teach our students!! Not only should we be teaching them content, but more importantly, we should be teaching them how to learn so that they can continue to do so for the rest of their lives. I was fortunate to have a middle school teacher who was incredibly innovative and shared with us the importance of being lifelong learners. She truly made each and every lesson come alive and was always searching for new and creative ways to do things. If we can all strive to be educators like the one I was lucky enough to experience, our students will definitely benefit! Thanks for sharing and have a happy summer!!


  2. courtneyhaywood says:

    Great post! I also think the idea of unlearning is important for students and teachers because not only will the students leave one day, not everyone is interested in the same things. Honestly, how many people do you know that say, “I love math”… my guess is not very many. Yet, it is one course taught Kindergarten-College as a requirement. While art is optional. Its absurd.


  3. kelseaprieels says:

    I really enjoyed reading your blog post and look at the images! I think both of these articles had a lot of great information. Unlearning is so important for not only students, but also for us as future teachers. If teachers are stuck on teaching the same ways, then students won’t be successful in learning the material.


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