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Overcoming Barriers to Implement Genius Hour in the Classroom

Apr 17, 2023

Genius Hour is an educational movement that encourages students to explore their passions and interests through independent, self-directed projects. Despite the many benefits of Genius Hour, not all teachers choose to implement it in their classrooms. In this blog post, we will explore some common reasons why teachers may not implement Genius Hour and provide advice on how they can overcome their barriers.

Reasons Educators Might Not Implement Genius Hour

Lack of time: Teachers may feel that they don't have enough time to devote to Genius Hour projects. They may worry that it will take away from the time they need to cover required curriculum.

Lack of resources: Teachers may feel that they don't have the necessary resources to support Genius Hour projects. This may include access to technology, materials, or funding.

Fear of losing control: Teachers may be hesitant to give up control of the classroom and worry that Genius Hour projects will lead to chaos or a lack of structure.

Lack of experience: Teachers may feel that they don't have the necessary experience or training to implement Genius Hour effectively.

Advice for Overcoming Barriers

Start small: Teachers can begin by incorporating short, focused Genius Hour projects into their curriculum. This allows students to explore their passions without taking up too much class time.

Use existing resources: Teachers can use existing resources to support Genius Hour projects. This might include materials that are already available in the classroom, or technology that students can access outside of class.

Set clear expectations: Teachers can set clear expectations for behavior and project requirements to ensure that Genius Hour projects remain structured and focused.  Utilizing a process like the 6 Ps of Genius Hour can help maintain structure and organization to the process. 

Provide support: Teachers can provide support to students during the Genius Hour process. This might include providing guidance on project ideas, helping students find resources, or providing feedback on their progress.

Seek out training and support: Teachers can seek out professional development opportunities to gain more experience and knowledge about implementing Genius Hour effectively. This might include attending workshops, participating in online communities, or reading educational resources.  You can find all of my Genius Hour resources HERE.

While there may be many reasons why teachers don't implement Genius Hour, there are also many ways to overcome these barriers. By starting small, using existing resources, setting clear expectations, providing support, and seeking out training and support, teachers can create a supportive and structured environment for Genius Hour projects. By doing so, they can help students explore their passions and interests while also developing important skills like creativity, critical thinking, and self-direction.

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