Provide students and teachers with an experience in a day-long project based inquiry.
Provide a high degree of choice for students and teachers.
Provide students and teachers with an experience of multi-age learning teams.
The team created and ran the initial prototype day. A groundswell of positive response from teachers,
students and parents followed. Through two more iterations of Day 9, several aspects of the prototype
were improved resulting in greater student choice, and improved day-long inquiry projects. Months
after our final prototype a new practice based on the prototype called ES Studio became a part of the
school week. The success of the ES Day 9 prototype also opened the door to a Day 9 Prototype in our
Middle School, around the same basic question, “What if you could design a new day of school, what
would that look like?”
Five Processes for Prototyping
In (Hoffman, 2014) we described distinct processes that we use
in our prototyping work:
Exploring - beginning to read systematically to understand
emerging needs, trends, and practices.
Studying - digging deep into the research, trends, connecting
with other schools or organizations in order to understand
their work and generate quality findings for the purpose of
Prototyping - creating a real practice, approach, or system for
school that can be studied and developed through iteration in
our own specific learning context.
Researching - Observational notes, keeping logs, creating portfolios, surveys, focus groups, and
gathering other data helps us analyze and understand the impact of a prototype and how it may be
improved, and key factors for success, or key factors that inhibit success. Data is collected and may
eventually be used to make recommendations.
Scaling - Data and insights are used to design a new prototype or run another iteration of the prototype
to test run with a larger group of students or different students. The data collected is used to make
recommendations about the practice or approach.