Even though the term at SFU hasn't started yet, I was too anxious to wait so we began this week! I explained what genius hour was to the class (an hour per week in which they would be able to learn about whatever they want; becoming a genius in whatever interests them and that after a few weeks we would present our learnings to the class) and their first task was to blog about what they wanted to focus on.
A few students needed some help coming up with ideas, but the rest were really excited to start learning about/doing what they were passionate about! On Monday afternoon, I had some students in the computer lab researching and creating powerpoints, some students filming movies that they later wanted to create into iMovies, one student painting and some writing scripts for french cooking shows! Everyone was excited and everyone was on task! I helped out as needed but really tried to push the students to problem solve and troubleshoot on their own. It was amazing!
As a teacher, I was a little apprehensive to give up so much of the control to the students, but I am now a firm believer in genius hour!