The Third Quarter 2015 Newsletter

table of contents

  • Getting the word out
  • Teaching materials
  • Clements High School

getting the word out

Lots of travel this quarter, getting the word out about Teach the Future --

  • Oct 15, Dallas TX – Interlink is a business/education consortium in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex designed to be sure that the high school and community college curriculum contains the skills that graduates for the job market in the area need.  Dr. Bishop made the case that futures thinking should be part of their curriculum.
  • Oct 22, Seongnam City, South Korea – Just outside of Seoul, Seongnam City is one of the high tech centers in Korea.  Some say it is the Silicon Valley of Korea.  Dr. Bishop met with the mayor and addressed a large group of citizens and city employees about how they should include futures thinking in their schools.
  • Nov 6, Trento, Italy – Dr. Robert Poli, a sociologist at the University of Trento, hosted a conference on Anticipation that asked 250 academics from all disciplines to share how their discipline deals with the future.  Dr.  Bishop participated on a panel of educators where he described how Teach the Future proposes to include anticipation in classes and schools around the world.
  • Oct 20-21, Las Vegas NV – Dr. Bishop met with leaders of the Communication and the Future Division of the National Communication Association at their annual meeting.  Dr. Bishop will be working them to propose a pre-conference course and a panel on teaching the future at their meeting in 2016.
  • Jan 9, Atlanta GA – David Staley, a history professor at Ohio State and a member of the Teach the Future Board of Directors, hosted a panel on teaching the future in history at the American Historical Association.  Other teachers on the panel were Peter Bishop, David Hochfelder, professor history at SUNY Albany, and Joe Sears, history teacher at Emergy High School in Houston.  The session was written up by Colleen Flaherty for InsideHigherEducation.com.

teaching materials

As you know, the primary activity this year is to produce teaching materials for secondary schools and colleges.  We are drawing the first phase of that development to a close in the next month or so.  These are the kind of materials we are developing, depending on the size and the time required --

  • Activity – Less than 1 day to 2 days
  • Lesson – 2 to 5 days (secondary), a week (college)
  • Unit – 2 to 6 weeks
  • Course – 10 to 15 weeks

It looks like the first batch of teaching materials will have about 30 modules in the following categories –

Activities

Secondary - 9
College - 4

Lessons

Secondary - 1
College - 0

Units

Secondary - 2
College - 1

Courses

Secondary - 2
College - 2

Some of the more interesting ones are an overall model of change, systems thinking, and the use of the Delphi method for estimating future quantities.

Another strategy is to assemble references to existing repositories of futures teaching materials.  So far we have identified 15 collections and 8 games that we will posting on the Teach the Future blog in the Collections category while our own materials are being prepared.

The next steps are to…

  • develop attractive and easy-to-use templates for these modules,
  • create one or more locations on the Internet where we can display and distribute the modules, and
  • promote them throughout the Spring. 

So stay with us.  More to come.


clements high school

Clements is one of the top-ranked high schools in the Houston metro area.  It serves Sugar Land, a major commercial and residential community in Fort Bend County.  The principal, David Yaffie, has asked Teach the Future to introduce futures thinking throughout the school.  Peter Bishop conducted an in-service in August for 20 teachers from many departments.  So far, four of those teachers have conducted futures activities or units with their students.  One was a terrific set of presentations on the future of the English language.  A half dozen or so other teachers are working on modules in their subject area.  It’s a large school so there is still plenty of room to grow. 

Peter will also be working with two teachers in their Global Studies Academy which is a group of teachers and students who take the same courses as a cohort.  Each student completes a capstone project in their senior year.  Three students have already indicated that they would like to do a project about the future of their topics.  One is on the future of jobs in the environmental industry, and another is on the future of healthcare. 

Peter Bishop also shared his thoughts on leadership with a class of school leaders (Student council, leaders of clubs, captains of sports teams, etc.).  He also introduced the future to an art class using images of the future.  So see!  You can teach the future in almost any class!

So stay in touch, and join the conversation on FacebookLinkedInTwitter and other social media platforms.  And contact us through the website or directly to peter@teachthefuture.org.