Published November 26, 2018
Additional Fredonia USD 484 articles:
True innovation is not driven by finding more efficient ways to check boxes. In fact, it can mean getting outside the boxes altogether in pursuit of a vision. Fredonia (KS) USD’s elevation into the Coalition of Innovative School Districts was premised upon a vision of the service it could provide
for students. K-12 Lead Teacher Brian Houghton is a standard bearer for this vision.
One aspect of being a key player in an innovative district is preparing students for the shifting, multifaceted career landscape that awaits them. Key to this readiness is breaking down subject matter silos and getting students to focus on the big picture. Houghton checks in as an Inspiring Innovator on the Teaching Type chart, and he’s the man for the job in Fredonia.
As Houghton puts it, “It’s not like you say,
‘Oh, now it’s time for the science of my day Oh, now it’s time to stop and read, or now I’ll
stop and do a little bit of math.’ It’s all part
of what we do as human beings, whether
you are a teacher, a construction worker, a
farmer, or in sales – you’re merging all of
those things together.”
Students who have been taught to
think big picture will have an edge in life.
Unfortunately, older education models
sometimes reinforce those silos, and at
times moving forward can be more about
checking boxes than meaningful progress.
Houghton and the team at Fredonia are
working to make a better path.
“Sometimes, it seems like you have to
jump through hoops to get to a goal. Why
do we do that to kids? We want to remove
some of the hoops.”