Laura K Spencer, Ed.D.
Hierarchy of Agency

Guest Blog Post: A Teacher’s Changing Mindset on Student Agency

By Emily Mackie, 5th grade teacher As mentioned in my Exploring Agency and Personalization blog on December 15th, I’ve been working with teachers to to better understand the principles of agency and personalization. As these are key elements… Read More

Exploring Agency & Personalization

For the past few months, I’ve had the pleasure of working alongside our county office’s Assessment, Accountability, and Evaluation Unit, as well as some of our teachers, to better understand the principles of agency and personalization. As these… Read More

Agency Through FortNite? Sure. Why not?

Fortnite, and other games like it, require students to practice “teamwork, collaboration, strategic thinking, spatial understanding, and imagination,”  Stanford Graduate School of Education experts say. 5th graders would agree, although they didn’t realize it at first. I’ve been working… Read More

Has It Only Been a Year?

To culminate the school year, my Innovation and Design team published a blog post reflecting on all that we accomplished, and more importantly, all that we LEARNED, this past school year. It’s crazy to think we’ve only been… Read More

A Message to Our Young Design Thinkers

Today I was honored to give a speech at a 6th grade promotion ceremony. I will admit, I was scared to give a speech. I mean, I give presentations all the time. I consider myself really good at… Read More

Design Thinking the Design Thinking Process

6th graders redesigned the design thinking graphic based on a deeper understanding of the elements of design thinking.

Do What Scares You!

Remember, observe the masses and do the opposite. Do what scares you… that’s when the exciting stuff happens.” — James Caan, serial entrepreneur and CEO of Hamilton Bradshaw The other day I jumped on a Twitter convo about… Read More

Compliant Geniuses? Think Again.

Our district mission statement centers around our calling to  “ignite genius and empower students to advance the world.” That’s a pretty tall order! Especially when, as Seth Godin explains (“The Long Term” podcast), students typically spend 90-95% of… Read More

A Rubric is Not an Authentic Audience

Yesterday, as I told my comp class about style and audience and the need to write what one cares about for a reader who wants to understand, one student said the most important thing I’ve ever heard: “I’ve… Read More

Use the [Internal] Force, Luke!

When people feel like they can experience success in a situation, they have more reason to put forth the effort to do so. If they feel like a situation is hopeless, or out of their control, why bother?… Read More

Do Not Read This Blog Post!

I was at a local event the other day that was filled with young children and their parents. The children were getting faces painted, collecting Easter eggs, and taking photos with the Easter bunny. As you can imagine,… Read More

Making Lunch Great Again!

I had the pleasure of listening to 5th grade students share their proposals to relaunch the lunch experience at their school. There were a few issues that the students were looking to solve: Students who get hot lunch… Read More