Curt Mould is the Director of Innovation and Continuous Improvement for the Sun Prairie Area School District. Curt works with teachers, leaders and community members to create designs for learning that are responsive to learners in the new century. Curt was a program coordinator for the Northwestern University Center for Talent Development and has served as curriculum director, building administrator and teacher. Curt is a member of Games, Learning and Society, and a researcher with the Personalization in Practice team at the University of Wisconsin – Madison.
GETTING TO KNOW CURT
Please share an event in your educational journey that has shaped the outlook you have today.
After my sister’s accident, she was treated differently in school because her ability to communicate effectively was not really there. I saw how a traditional setting did not work for her and reflected on those experiences as I went through college.
What about being a thought leader in transforming education gives you the greatest fulfillment?
When you go into classrooms and see students who have struggled previously say how this new way works and can acknowledge exactly why it works.
What about being a thought leader in transforming education is the most frustrating?
There are a lot of structures in place in public education that are either a perceived structure barrier like a grade book or actual structure barriers in statute and licensure.
Please tell us about a person from your journey that has had strong impact on how you view education.
Many thought leaders have inspired me and pushed me to think in different ways. Jim Rickabaugh has been a very instrumental part asking thought provoking questions for the past 7 years. Lisa Bollinger is taking on the challenge of failing forward and making her school the absolute best she can using her innovative and passionate mindset.
PERSONALIZED LEARNING JOURNEY
What is it about personalized learning that you believe will transform teaching and learning?
Having a skill set to elicit feedback and reflection. Sharpening those skills around conferring and coaching, being a facilitator, and how to ask tough questions that don’t have answers. Creating an environment where success and failure is expected and is a key central component of learning.
Please tell us about a time or situation where you observed resistance to this work. What did you do to overcome or influence the resistance?
The resistance might come from lack of understanding because you can’t communicate enough. We have to figure out how to help students realize their teaching capacity.
SECRETS TO SUCCESS
What one strategy would you suggest educators focus on every day that will have the greatest impact?
I don’t think we can underscore the idea that goal setting, rapid feedback and reflection has on growth mindset and outcomes for kids.
WORDS OF WISDOM
What final words would you share with the audience to inspire them to start, continue or accelerate this transformational work?
Know that it is okay to innovate and there is networks and support out there. Surround yourself with others who are sharing your same ideas, learn and grow and be inspired by others.