The First Quarter 2015 Newsletter

Table of contents

  • Fundraising campaign
  • Latest News
  • Business
  • Social Media
  • Things to come

fundraising campaign

Our first fundraising campaign on Start Some Good, a platform for non-profit ventures.  Thanks to D’Ann Bishop who designed the campaign and to Patty Simonton at Start Some Good who gave us great support to launch the campaign.

We were going to use Kickstarter, the obvious choice, but we felt that Kickstarter is more for commercial ventures, and it’s better to be in a neighborhood with other people also trying to change the world.  Some people might be a little uncomfortable donating through a site that they haven’t heard of, but we did our research.  You’ll find a lot of traffic in Google under “start some good” and “start some good reviews,” including an article in Forbes.

Also a new website at www.teachthefuture.org thanks to Jefferies Design in Naples FL and Dan Downey, a copy writer in Folsom CA.  The website is cleaner, quicker and more suited to our mission of enrolling people in the social movement to teach the future in schools.

 It contains a three-part call to action –

  • Join the conversation, on social media, of course.
  • Donate to the fundraising campaign to pay stipends to teachers to develop futures teaching materials.
  • And for educators, contribute any futures lessons activities for teachers to curate (use as raw material) for the work this summer.

It also contains a page where educators can download a secondary and/or a college futures starter kit that contains a few lessons that teachers can use right away or adapt to their purpose.

We have ported over just a few blogs from the old website, and we’ll be bringing over more content as time goes on.

And finally, two new videos for the fundraising campaign and the website thanks to Jamie Fletcher at FocusPoint Studios in Houston and Dan Downey. 

  • One is the calls to action, principally to support the fundraising campaign.
  • The other is short discourse on how to teach the future when you can’t predict it.

So this quarter is still preparation, but we have made tremendous progress. 

And won’t you help us reach our financial goal?  Contribute what you can at www.startsomegood.com/teachthefuture


latest news

  • Mark and Zach are continuing to work with a small number of students at Xavier Academy in Houston.  We will get a report shortly on what they accomplished this semester.
  • Peter Bishop met with Anne Beckman, Director of the Global Studies Academy at Clements High School in Sugarland TX, a Houston suburb.  An Academy in that school means a group of students who take a structured program of courses from the same teachers as a cohort.  The Global Studies Academy obviously focuses on language, culture, environment, geopolitics and other global topics (like the future!).  She became aware of the UH program and Teach the Future through Adrian Taylor, a colleague from Hamburg, Germany.  She shared the idea of teaching the future in their Academy with her faculty.  In the meantime, David Yaffie, the principal at Clements, heard about Teach the Future, and wanted to teach the future across the whole school!  Peter Bishop met with him and Anne on Jan 15, and then with a select group of teachers in mid-February to discuss the opportunity.  Everyone came away from that meeting very pleased.  So the next steps are to introduce the idea to the whole faculty in April, and conduct in-service and planning workshops, by department, in August.  So Clements could be the first school in the world to teach the future across the whole curriculum!
  • Erica addressed a group of faculty from UNESCO schools in Holland about Teach the Future in March.  She also introduced the program to students at Earth University in Mercedes, Costa Rica.

business

Peter Bishop and the Advisory Group created a non-profit corporation in Delaware called Teach the Future, Inc. 

We set up a P.O. box (5300 N. Braeswood Blvd, Suite 4 – 374, Houston TX 77096), a bank account, and applied for a trademark for the ‘Teach the Future’ name.  The trademark takes a few months so no results yet.

We also designed and printed stationery, thanks to Marty Yigdall, the designer at Upstate Packaging in Greenville SC.


social media

Peter Bishop spent a good bit of time learning about and getting comfortable with social media.  Teach the Future now as a full suite of company and group pages on LinkedInFacebookGoogle+TumblrPinterest and Twitter (@teachfutures). Please join the conversation there.


things to come


Here are just a few things that we hope to happen before the next newsletter –

  • Fundraising – Reach the goal of $10,000 by May 25 and going beyond that.  Peter Bishop has pledged to match the first $20,000 donated in this campaign in an independent contribution to Teach the Future.  So donate now!
  • A repository – Build a futures teaching repository for teachers during the summer by:
    • assembling teaching material that we know about already, and
    • asking teachers to contribute any futures material they might have.
  • Teachers –
    • Recruit teachers to develop futures lessons and activities over the summer.  Announcements and applications will go out shortly.
    • Kick-off and manage the process of curating the repository into high quality lessons.
  • Partners
    • Appear at the bi-annual meeting of the World Futures Studies Federation in Turku, Finland to form a partnership with their educational efforts in futures studies.
    • Work with a business group in a major metropolitan area that works with high schools and community colleges to help their students be ready for careers when they graduate.  They are interested in including the future in that effort.
  • Business -- Works in progress:
    • Develop and adopt a set of By-Laws for the Board,
    • Set up a QuickBooks accounting system in the Cloud,
    • Apply for 501c3, tax-exempt status, and
    • Establish the means to receive donations on the website beginning in late May.

We are working as hard as we can to make Teach the Future a success.  You can help with your donation

And teachers can help by…

  • Downloading and using the Starter Kit,
  • Contributing any material they have about the future, and
  • Apply to work with us over the summer.

So that’s it for this quarter.  Thanks for signing up on the site.  Stay in touch and Teach the Future!