This lesson works best if students are allowed to implement some of the actions they recommend. For this reason, you may wish to give students constraints so that the actions they propose are more feasible (i.e. a cost or materials limit). Additionally, you should alert administrators and other teachers if your students will be implementing any large changes outside of the classroom. If students are not able to directly implement changes, you can invite school leaders to participate on a panel where students will present their recommendations.

At a minimum, this lesson requires three class periods, but can take longer depending upon the amount of time you wish to allot to parts 2 and 3. You can assign segments of the lesson as homework if you wish. Additionally, the lesson can be spread out over a period of weeks. For instance, if students are proposing involved actions or novel materials, you may wish to spend some time in between when students provide you with a project plan and materials list and when they implement their action in order to give you time to notify other educators or gather materials.

This lesson also requires students to provide feedback on each other’s work. If this is not something your students have done in the past, you may wish to spend time reviewing norms for giving and receiving feedback in a respectful and useful way.

Due to the open-ended nature of the lesson, different groups of students may require different amounts of support to select and refine a plan for action. Be sure to read through the lesson thoroughly and identify points where students may need help. You can schedule “project meetings” with specific groups to check-in on their progress. You could also have the class focus on just one action and work together to implement it rather than having smaller groups implementing multiple actions. Finally, you can always instruct students to return to their Innovation Worksheet from Lesson 1. Reviewing the process of innovation as it is laid out in the worksheet can help students focus in on the steps they will need to take to move their project forward.