Life After Toy Story!

One of the most anticipated movies of this summer is Toy Story 3, the third in a series of Disney/Pixar movies where the main characters are Woody, a cowboy, and Buzz Lightyear, a space ranger, are the favorite toys of a real boy named Andy. Undoubtedly most of our students at Kimmel Farm Elementary will see the soon to be blockbuster. But it was the convergence of the plot of this movie and the plot our students will live out with their future careers that got me thinking.

In Toy Story 3, Woody, Buzz and their their toy-box friends are placed in a day-care center after Andy, now grown, goes off to college. Andy is moving on, doing the admirable thing, following the track, continuing his education. He is following the accepted path for success to which most of us have long held. But for our current and future students will this be the pathway to successful careers in their futures? Certainly education will play a part, but what should this education empower us as learners to do?
After seeing this video from the dean of Pixar University, Randy Nelson, I wondered if the typical track (high school degree, college degree, post-graduate work etc.) is really going to be the one that generates future success. Pixar is the animation studios that brings Toy Story to life, and they have a very progressive way of working and looking for talent. Nelson talks about two core principles I believe would serve our students well as they learn here at Kimmel Farm - accept every offer, and make your partner(s) look good. It's that kind of collaborative spirit that has made Pixar a success.
It's no longer enough to have a strong resume. Nelson speaks of the promise of a resume versus the proof of a portfolio. His comments prompted me to ponder how we look at the "success" of our students with the snapshot of an End of Grade Test (a resume), versus how much deeper we could go with an ongoing portfolio assessment. There's a lot here to think about, and it's worthy of reflective thought. For more,
here's the link to Edutopia with insightful comments from educators.