Introducing: Passion to Teach

What is the Passion to Teach Fellowship?

Passion to Teach is an initiative that supports a small cohort of Boston Public Schools teachers in a yearlong Fellowship that:

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  • Helps you develop and grow a passion project in your classroom or school.

  • Builds your skills around project-based learning and developing curriculum that is engaging and standards-aligned.

  • Helps you design “spark experiences” for your students that give them both real-world applications for their learning and exposure to new opportunities.

  • Supports you through expert training, consultation, and monthly facilitated workshops.

  • Helps make your vision a reality through a start-up mini grant and support with garnering additional funding to grow your project over time.

The project is a special initiative of the Shah Family Foundation, in collaboration with the Teacher Collaborative.

Through the Passion to Teach initiative, we aspire to support teachers to create innovative, high quality learning opportunities that engage, excite, and energize teachers and their students.  

A word from the inspirational founder of Passion to Teach, John Rowse:

Passion to Teach was founded in honor of John Rowse (1943-2018), former Boston Public Schools Teacher and founder of Community Boat Building.

John believed that authentic, hands-on learning experiences will lead to profound gains for students and he demonstrated this while teaching at the Young Achievers K-8 School in Boston. John created a boat-building experience for his students (and students at a number of other schools) that was innovative, rigorous, engaging and that brought joy to him and his students.

Learn more about John’s inspirational legacy here.

Details about the 2019-20 Fellowship:

  • During the summer workshop and monthly meetings, Fellows will receive resources and training related to effectively implementing project-based learning, as well as ongoing support and feedback to develop and implement their idea.

  • Fellows receive a $5,000 stipend, which includes both funds to purchase materials for their classrooms and funds to cover the time they will spend devoted to developing their ideas outside of school.

  • Fellows will also receive training and support to write additional grants and present to local funders in order to secure ongoing funding to sustain and expand their projects.

  • The 2019-20 Fellowship will kick off with a three-day summer workshop in August 2019 (dates TBD; there is a question about this in the application to help us select dates that will work for all of the participants.)

  • The group will met 8 times over the course of the year, roughly monthly on the third Friday of the month, from 4:30-6:30pm.

    • Why Friday? Meeting on Fridays allows us to avoid most other school-based professional development and allows you to be more focused and relaxed. Meetings will include dinner.

We are seeking teachers who:

  • Ideally have 5+ years of experience

  • Will contribute to a diverse cohort along a number of dimensions, including geography, grade level, subject, background, and life experience.

  • Have already begun following their passion in some way and/or have started to implement some form of project-based learning in their classroom.

  • Who are eager to dive into PBL/design thinking and who are eager to learn how to effectively share and grow their idea (including learning how to fundraise for it).

  • Who have the explicit support/”sign off” of their school leaders and can commit to fully participating in all meetings and workshops, as well as committing some time outside of meetings to develop their idea.

2019-20 Applications are now closed. For those who submitted an application already, we anticipate sending notifications on Friday, April 26th.

Learn about the work of the 2018-19 pilot cohort of Passion to Teach Fellows here.

Questions? Please reach out to Maria Fenwick at maria@theteachercollaborative.org. 

Passion to Teach is a special initiative of the Shah Family Foundation, in collaboration with the Teacher Collaborative.