Messaging Is Everything

How are our systems supporting and nurturing deep, meaningful, and civic-minded conversations?

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I recently saw this video on Facebook... liked and shared it... and it started a conversation thread that I found fascinating.  It wasn't the tone or content of the conversation, but was the fact that many of the decisions being made "on behalf of our students" often don't take into account the actual, individual student. 

So, what's the message that's being sent?  Is the intended message we are sending being received as intended, or is it being manipulated (good or bad), changed, ignored, or misinterpreted?  

Further, when a student feels that an injustice has been made, how do we nurture and facilitate these conversations?  To what extent are these conversations transparent, public, and involve a host of opinions?  Do we try and sweep these things under the rug to "maintain order?"  And if so, what message about #CivicVoices are we sending to our students?

I'm not sure where to go with this, but I figured that this is something that may be worth exploring.

Or not.


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Photo of MK

Hi Matthew, 

I took a fantastic, free class from Acumen+/ called The Course for Human Centered Design. Changed my life. One of their free (Creative Commons) materials is a packet called Frame Your Own Design Challenge. You might consider exploring it--it's all about how to frame problems so that you can solve them. Here's the link, though I don't know if it will go through: A complement is's annual report:, which frames how they are doing with the issues in their portfolio. I love their process, and kids have no trouble getting the concepts.

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