Will Richardson has spent the last dozen years developing an international reputation as a leading thinker and writer about the intersection of social online learning networks, education, and systemic change. He was one of a handful of original education bloggers (willrichardson.com), and his work has appeared in numerous journals, newspapers, and magazines such as Ed Leadership, District Administration, Education Week, The New York Times and English Journal. He is an outspoken advocate for change in schools and classrooms in the context of the diverse new learning opportunities that the Web and other technologies now offer, and has spoken to and worked with educators in over 20 countries on six continents to understand the opportunities and challenges of learning in the modern world. In 2017, he was named one of 100 global "Changemakers in Education" by the Finnish site HundrED, and was named one of the Top 5 "Edupreneurs to Follow" by Forbes.
Will has authored six books, most recently From Master Teacher to Master Learner (2015, Solution Tree Press). In total, his books have sold over 250,000 copies worldwide.
A former public school educator of 22 years, Will is a co-founder of Modern Learner Media and co-publisher of ModernLearners.com which is a site dedicated to helping educational leaders and policy makers develop new contexts for new conversations around education. Most recently, Will co-founded Change.School and, in addition, the ChangeLeaders.Community, two online destinations for educational leaders interested in creating relevant, sustainable change in schools using a coaching, curation, and community approach.
Will lives in rural New Jersey with his wife Wendy and, depending on the day, his children Tess and Tucker.
Freedom to Learn: The Importance of Student Agency in the Modern Classroom
The modern, networked world increasingly values and rewards those who are self-determined, voracious learners, those who are literally able to learn their way through problems and projects on a daily basis. Developing the skills, literacies, and dispositions to become that type of a learner must now become the focus of every school experience and environment. That all starts with honoring and expanding the freedom and agency of our students to learn what they want, when they want, with whomever they want, in whatever ways make most sense to them. Today more than ever, learners will inherit the earth. That starts with us.