What We Make
We develop curriculum that inspires students to develop trajectories toward engaging and meaningful vocations. This requires empowering them with empathy for their audience, accountability for their work, and a means for recognizing and developing their authentic voice.
At Shad & Associates we feel it is important to help students re-engage with the academy through the lens of their passions - drawing the artful student in with design, inspiring creative communication and a more rigorous work ethic. This results in academic successes (for many the first they have experienced) that then give them the confidence to apply themselves to other disciplines. Ours is a methodology invested in providing a more level playing field for non-traditional students as well as multi-lingual students. In these curricula design acts as a means of communication enhancing the written and spoken word. It provides visual learners as well as ESL students with an opportunity to thrive.
As educators our primary motivation must not be to promote a given discipline, but to inspire self-confidence in a student’s abilities to be a life long learner. We don’t make artists and philosophers - they make themselves. Instead we have the opportunity to inspire citizen explorers who will perhaps hear our voices in their heads as they go out, analyze their world, and develop their contributions to it. We want to plant the love of learning, and cultivate an environment that supports the growth of that love, so that the students can ultimately harvest the rewards for years to come.
We are interested in fostering agency, not academic subservience. We want to create an environment that allows students to actively participate in their own education – rather than simply being passive recipients of information. It is therefore of the utmost importance that rather than merely telling our students about the world we instead ask them to investigate it with us. We must create programs that ask them to develop the analytical tools to see what needs doing and begin devising a means of action accordingly. Classes must be devised to inspire students through examples of well applied ideas, to help students learn to research their effectiveness, and to embark on projects to improvise and implement tools of their own in order to go out into the world and redesign it for the betterment of us all.