Take a moment, and close your eyes. Think back to a time when you attended school, and recall something or someone that caused your mind to reach a state of rapture, something you still talk about to this very day. Odds are, you’re not thinking about worksheets you did back in 7th grade or the teacher that made everyone do “popcorn” readings. The moments we recall, and that have inspired us to become teachers and school administrators, are often the hands-on projects where we could make and design, or the outgoing teachers who inspired us daily to question the very things that they were teaching. These moments occur when students are empowered by educators to take risks outside their comfort zones, and when the main focus in the classroom is learning, not grades. Student empowerment reawakens curiosity, wonder, and moments of awe, which are sadly missing in many secondary school systems.


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