I was worried about introducing Genius Hour into primary. I didn’t want to lean too much on the parents for research and material support. I didn’t want my students to start something they couldn’t finish…I had a lot of negatives built up. It hasn’t been easy, and then today happened.
Students are at the stage of sourcing materials, designing their build, and some have attempted a first prototype. The enthusiasm from the students has been incredible, they keep wanting to just build. The parents want to help but are not always sure how to. This is OK, as each project is different.
My role has been the facilitate and direct the positive energy from the students, and encourage the parents to trust the process as the final product is not really the end goal (although it is a great artifact to represent all of their hard work). One student today in particular shared his experiences.
He explained that he had gone through what he called An Epic Failure. He shared with the class some design challenges when working with materials to build a prototype robot (tubing, cardboard, etc.) that wasn’t exactly as flexible as he wanted. He explained to his peers about going through all that work and having to start over. Someone asked him if he was upset. His response deserved a slow clap followed by a standing ovation with cheers and confetti (in my opinion).
“I didn’t really fail, I just learned how to do it differently.”
Today was when I knew that Genius Hour was a success in my room. We still have the majority of building to do and many more epic failures to discover. I can’t wait to epically fail with them.