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087 | Education Through Innovation | Don Wettrick

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Don Wettrick, CEO and co-founder of StartEdUp Innovation program, and a current high school teach, talks about the cultivating innovation and creativity in the classroom, harnessing a learner’s internal motivation, and giving students opportunities to solve problems they’re passionate about.

What you’ll hear from Don Wettrick:

  • Why and how did Don create an Innovation course at his school, and ultimately the StartEdUp Innovation program?
  • What was challenging about getting his students involved during the early stages, when it was just extra time during his class?
  • When do students lose their curiosity or learning?
  • How much does a reward really motivate students?
  • What would the process look like to develop and nurture internally motivated learners through elementary school?
  • What’s the difference between creativity and imagination?
  • How can a parent help their child be more innovative outside of school?
  • What does Don recommend as a good consumption v. production ratio?
  • How does changing consumption habits – how much, and what – impact the way Don’s students and own children think?
  • How does building community within a cohort of “creators” impact a student’s relationship?
  • Does participation in Don’s high school class impact his students other grades?
  • How do mastery, autonomy and purpose mix together best?
  • What does it look like to be in Don’s Innovation Class?
    • 6-7 weeks of class
      • Basics of innovation
      • How to think creatively
      • Building a professional social media presence
    • Remainder of class is “open source learning”
    • Volunteer with struggling non-profits, to see problems close up
    • Statewide student “Pitch” competition
    • Helping struggling local businesses
  • What sort of projects have his students build?
  • What story do you tell yourself, about yourself?
  • Is there a difference between improvement and new opportunity?
  • How would Don hope to integrate innovation development into schools in his 10-year dream?
  • Contact: @DonWettrick on Twitter
  • What did Don’s father mean when he told him to “Pay himself first”?
  • Why does Don think it’s important to fail?
Listen to Brad and Jonathan’s thoughts about this episode here.


“Daniel Pink: The Puzzle of Motivation” Freakonomics You Will Lose Your Job to a Robot—and Sooner Than You Think ——————- Thank you for being a part of the ChooseFI community! If you want to support us, here are some easy ways: 1) Leave an iTunes review: http://www.choosefi.com/itunes 2) Use our page to sign up for travel credit cards Note: We may receive a commission if you are approved for cards on this page 3) Most importantly, find your friends, coworkers, and family members who may be open to this message and tell them about the podcast! (Episode 21 is a great starting place) As Jonathan would say, “The FIRE is spreading my friends!”   https://www.choosefi.com/087-education-through-innovation-don-wettrick/
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