Yesterday, we introduced the 20% Time project to the kids during sixth and seventh hour classes. Already we had been doing some work in preparation for the launch (Socratic Symposium on "Failure" and The Bad Idea Factory) so the kids knew that something big was coming. We took a half hour to run through the meaning of 20% Time, outline the process, talk about the timeline, highlight some of the bigger events on the horizon, and discuss what this learning project will mean to them. As you can imagine, some kids showed signs of being overwhelmed while others were chomping at the bit to get started.
The kids will have about a week to settle on an idea that they'd like to pursue and we will conference with each student to help shape their project idea. Already, this morning, kids have been coming in with ideas ranging from inventing a new kind of headphone to studying the affects of fear on people in order to help them overcome it. These kids are definitely thinking! We have a lot of work to do this week to help make sure that each student or group has a viable idea with which they can work. Fingers crossed! - Don