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Genius Hour is an activity conducted in a classroom by Dr. Michele Haiken at Rye Middle School in Rye, NY. Dr. Haiken hosts an event each semester that allows students to imagine the change they want to see in their community, collaborate with one another, and present their business/social change model to a panel of judges. Judges are asked to critique the plan and advise the students on an improvement plan so they may carry out their dream of implementing change.


(Image: GMH Board of Directors, left to right, Michele Haiken, Chris McGilvery, and Nikki Josephs standing beside the many books donated to the #HUGSBookshare Program.)

The Genius Hour project promotes students’ ownership of their own learning and allows for them to explore and create meaningful, insightful, and creative ideas. The students are asked to implement the change they want to see and formulate ways to overcome any difficulties that arise. Leadership is a process and teaching students to begin the process early in their development is crucial. Having young leaders begin this type of learning is exactly what Give More HUGS is about.

(Image: Students from Rye Middle School after showcasing their #geniushour ideas to our GMH Leaders for #sharktank.)

Members of the GMH Leadership Team have been asked to be on the panel of judges for 2 years and hope to continue this partnership. Encouraging students to work hard, be social change makers, and add detail to their project ideas to bring them to life is always exciting.

Posted in Genius Hour

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