Kids are special in ways adults aren't.
They have a unique outlook for life and powerful insights to share. Helping them communicate in clear and creative ways is a great way to exploit their potential.
Here are 5 simple ways to get them started:
Encourage them to write.
Writing is the single best way to accelerate your learning, attract like-minded peers, and create opportunities for yourself.
Writing promotes self-directed learning.
"People wrongly think that you need to be an expert to write about something. Wrong. Writing is the way that you learn about the thing that then you become an expert in."—David Perell
Let them make choices.
Freedom is important to writing well.
"Students find writing most meaningful when they have some agency and control over what they're writing about." —John Warner
Let kids choose the topic, audience, purpose, and medium.
Forget about rules and mechanics.
By overemphasizing grammar and mechanics, rules and structure, we withhold kids from the most important and motivating parts of writing.
Instead, focus on what already feels like play to them: IDEAS. The rest will follow.
"If we remove the writing rules and excessive structure that schools enforce, kids will have to make something new that reflects their true creativity." —John Warner
Teach them how to use technology to create and share, not only to consume.
Show them how to generate transformative ideas and share them with anyone, anywhere. Once they see that their ideas have the power to create value, they'll be motivated to keep writing. In order to keep writing, they'll need to keep reading and learning. It creates a powerful cycle.
Encourage them to put in the reps.
Teach kids about the value of compounding, repetition, and consistency. Help them understand that if they show up everyday and put in consistent work, progress is inevitable.
"Your 1st blog post will be bad, but your 1000th will be great. Your 1st workout will be weak, but your 1000th will be strong. Your 1st meditation will be scattered, but your 1000th will be focused. Put in your reps."—James Clear
One of my favorite books on this topic is Why They Can't Write by John Warner. Check it out if you want more tips to get kids writing!
Synthesis' Big Week
This was a special week at Synthesis.
We announced that we are raising a $5m round from Anthony Pompliano and a group of amazing angel investors to continue to work on our goal: Transforming childhood education.
I would like to take a step back and walk you though what this journey has been like.
A few years ago I left teaching in search of new approaches to learning. I wanted to find a learning experience that would teach kids the things that really matter:
how to solve complex problems
how to make wise, ethical decisions
how to be creative and resourceful
how to adapt to constant change
how to think independently
I was fortunate to meet Josh Dahn and Chrisman Frank, co-founders of Synthesis, last year when the company was still in stealth mode.
They both shared my passion for transforming education and were working around the clock to scale the best parts of Ad Astra, the school that Josh built with Elon Musk at SpaceX. (For those not familiar, here’s the story of how Synthesis grew out of Ad Astra.)
After learning about their mission and joining one of their beta sessions, I was hooked.
It’s hard to put into words, but here’s how our kids describe the Synthesis Experience:
A bit thereafter, I joined the Synthesis team as Chief Evangelist and helped them launch in November 2020.
Fast-forward 6 months, today Synthesis is a family of 16 (+70 facilitators), serving 1,500 kids from all over the world. And we are just getting started. Synthesis is shaping up as the premier online community where kids go to become better problem solvers.
Here’s a 2 minute video of our CEO, Chrisman Frank, describing how we found product-market fit:
We are excited for the future, but today is still Day One at Synthesis. We will continue to work hard, putting kids at the center of everything we're building, and training them to become ethical decision makers and collaborative problem solvers.
We are overjoyed by your support.
If you want to learn more about Synthesis, here are 4 articles I wrote:
Until next week!
Ana Lorena Fabrega