Innovation Diploma 2: Fail Up and WriteNOW

To start, I want to apologize. I meant to write a post last weekend, but because it was Labor Day Weekend, I took advantage of time I had (something I am not used to having anymore) and finished a couple of books. Because of that, I didn’t write it until Monday, but when I went to save it so I could come back to it later, WordPress came up with an error message and I lost all of my work. I was planning on trying to post it on Tuesday, but I was really busy all week and since I said every 1 to 2 weeks, here we are now.

I will start with last week and then do this week.


It was a big week for the letters C and F. Specifically, for the words Communication and Fail Up.

We don’t meet on Monday, so on Tuesday we had our first ever “Traffic Talk” which, as far as I can figure, is basically a fancy word for an informal meeting. We had a bowl of candy corn (because they look like traffic cones) that was passed up and down the table. I don’t know if I am actually allowed to disclose what we talked about, but I will tell you that it was a lot of really cool opportunities that are coming up this semester. We also talked about how important it is to communicate with everyone else.

Diving specifically into communicating, there were two topic covered: getting our story out, and informing our teachers of what we’re doing. For the first one, we talked about different ways of telling our story, one of which is blogging like I and several of my friends do. Also on the list were talking at Chapel, put it in the weekly newsletter, Storify, make a video, and many others. For the second one, because we were going the CDC later that week, Mr. Adams and Mrs. Cureton wanted to make sure we were telling our teachers what was happening, checking with them about anything we would be missing, working out solution for the things we would miss, etc.

And speaking of the CDC . . . this is were “Fail Up” comes in. First, there was a miscommunication about whether or not we had an available bus, despite the fact that one of the teachers had EMAIL CONFORMATION (which should never be argued with)! Then we learned that the CDC wasn’t letting any adults in without their driver’s license, which 2 of the teachers didn’t have with them. At this point in time, any lesser group would have been scared into not doing it, but we trudged on. And thank goodness we did, because once we got there, it was amazing! The groups were so much more energetic, ready to jump in, and seemed much more willing to admit mistakes and make changes. They had two opportunities to tell their stories: once during a skit and once during a mock elevator pitch. I’m sorry that some of our cohort wasn’t there, because it was a great experience, even if I did have to study on the bus, rush back to school to make it in time for English, stay after school to talk a history assessment. And they ordered us pizza and breadstick that we ate on the bus!

Also sometime during the week we watched a TED Talk by Mick Ebeling called The Invention That Unlocked a Locked-in Artist, and I could write about this, but there are already some much better posts about it on the Innovation Diploma website (found here). I will say, however, that the two question he asked at the end really stuck out to me: “If not now, then when?” and “If not me, then who?”


And now for this week:

We had our second Traffic Talk, for which Mrs. Cureton had created a Google Doc where we can keep track of what we talk about each week. Again, I don’t know if I can tell you all of the great things we’re up to, but I’ll probably find out the answer to that question soon.

This week, we also started a “Bug List” from which we will find the project we will work on this year. We also were going to use one of them to write our WriteNOW. WriteNOW is something my school used to get it’s students to write more, even though most students hate it, which is something we talked about today.

One of the members of the cohort, Margaret, created a presentation about the WriteNOW and we had a discussion about WriteNOWs in the past, this WriteNOW, and future WriteNOWs. We thought of different ways we could present our material and talked about how professional it needs to be. I have a feeling this will be a conversation that will happen again.


And we have some new blogs!




One thought on “Innovation Diploma 2: Fail Up and WriteNOW

  1. You have so much in here! What a great capture of your experience this past week. This post is rich with possible topics to further explore. I look forward to seeing which topics you dig into!

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