The mission Moran has set centers on preparing students for success in everyday life. That work starts as early as pre-K and elementary school, when youngsters can be taught to use technology to do basic research and access expertise available in the outside world.
Rather than using computers to assign digital worksheets, educators must show students how to harness technology to become producers and creators. Accordingly, older students have begun to solve problems in the community.
The multiage classroom represents several of Moran’s core beliefs about education: First, that children should make their own choices. Having influence empowers and encourages learners to pursue more challenging projects—even if they fail.
She worries that society has become overprotective of children. “Risk is what drives invention,” she says. “If we didn’t have people willing to take risks to try things, we wouldn’t have electricity, we wouldn’t have the telephone, we wouldn’t have democracy.”