The Genius Hour
What if you could create a genius hour of learning where you can learn a new skill or profession while having fun at the same time?
Genius Hour is an engaging project in both the classroom and often in the workplace where workers and students are permitted to explore their interests and personal talents for an extended period of time, generally ranging from one hour a week to half of the scheduled class time. What I love about this concept is that it provides an environment in which learning and discovery can occur at its most natural and it’s also much more flexible than the conventional classroom experience. As opposed to one-on-one lecture format, where there may be only one teacher for several rows of students, in a genius hour students and teachers can engage one another and collaborate in an effort to enhance learning.
A genius hour is not simply a series of lectures given by one teacher over a period of time; instead, it is designed as a project whereby all participants are encouraged to get involved and contribute. The end result constitutes the best way to learn on your own time and at your own pace. So how do you design your own genius hour of learning? Above all, it’s important that the event is a one-off, so that participants know that they’ll have a chance to learn more about whatever topic was being discussed that day.
However, it doesn’t need to be restricted to one session or even one lesson; a longer-term approach is also very successful and in fact encouraged. It’s worth remembering that the learning environment should be one that encourages learning in a group. This can easily be facilitated by creating an atmosphere that encourages learning within a small group of people, rather than in a classroom, seminar, or workshop with many participants. By doing this, participants feel more confident that their contribution to the activity is actually of value, and they will be more likely to continue participating in more future sessions.
It’s important to take the time to think about what motivates you and others, and create a learning environment that suits everyone’s needs.