5 Questions for CUE Chief Innovation Officer, Jon Corippo

5 Questions for CUE Chief Innovation Officer, Jon Corippo
Last Updated: May 11, 2017 1:49 pm

5 Questions for CUE Chief Innovation Officer, Jon Corippo

This week, we had the pleasure of chatting with Jon Corippo, Apple Distinguished Educator and newly minted CUE Chief Innovation Officer. Jon has been connecting on Twitter with educators since 2008 at @jcorippo. California’s CUE organization has been leading the charge for progressive and STEM education for years, and was integral into the creation of the Google Certified Educator program (now Certified Innovator). A bit more about Jon (from CUE’s site): 

Jon Corippo is the Chief Innovation Officer for CUE, leading CUE’s professional learning throughout California and Nevada. Jon keynotes, leads and designs Professional Learning experiences all over the country. Jon’s core PL skills are focused on 1:1 deployment, Common Core, Project Based Learning, social media skills, and Lesson Design. Jon is the creator of the CUE Rock Star Camp Series, The CUE Rock Star Admin Camp Series, and planner for the CUE Super Symposium and JET Review Program.

Jon gave us some time to tell us about his approach to innovation, STEM, and other cool stuff: 

1.  You’re an Apple Distinguished Educator and a member of many important education communities. How important is community in regards to education technology? 
Well, I’m a Google Certified Innovator and a Microsoft Innovative Educator too, and I’ll tell you this: It’s the network. That is what makes all those things remarkable – not the platform or the devices – it’s the RADICALLY creative and FANATICALLY devoted educators. People who say: I can do that better. And then they share like crazy. As one of my 6th graders said years ago – all of us is smarter than any one of us.
2. Who are you learning from most right now? 
Wow – since I’m in SO many networks, that’s hard to pinpoint one person  but here’s a list of a few of them: David Culberhouse, Mike McCormick, David Theriault, Cori Orlando, Brian Briggs, Sam Patterson, Doug Robertson, Sean Ziebarth, Trish Sanchez, Jesus Huerta, Lisa Nowakowski, and many others – and as always – Alice Keeler. These people blow my mind on a daily basis!
3. As innovation goes, what’s your best advice to that lone teacher, who is trying so hard in a silo or district where innovation is not prevalent? 
#1 – do not be seen as a rebel. Rebels get moved along and eliminated. You want to keep your head down, as far as politics. Your best defense is a productive classroom and happy, motivated kids and parents. As far as your class goes, nothing succeeds like success. Make sure what you’re doing is demonstrably BETTER than what folks are doing in the normal classroom. Also, and this is key, get a network going on social media. Most innovative teachers are not appreciated locally – even if they are world famous. That network will prop you up and give you a hug and a high five on those hard days when your own folks are not.
4.  What should every eager teacher be reading right now? 
These are my books folks should read: Dumbing Us Down by John Taylor Gatto, former 2x New York State Teacher of the Year. You may not like the message, but you need to hear it. Especially since the book is from the 90s and not much has changed since then. Why Johnny Can’t Read. Rudolph Flesch (of the famous Flesch-Kinkaid reading levels) shows you how to teach the beginnings of reading. Fast. With no textbooks or worksheets. And 100% success. Worth the one penny price on Amazon. Think Like a Freak by the authors of Freakonomics. Move beyond data. Move to ACTION based on data. Last but not least: Exploiting Chaos, free at Exploitingchaos.com. Learn how to innovate and market exciting new ideas to your people – is there a more critical missing skill for educators than being able to get people to excited about your ideas? I submit there is not.
5. We’re hearing about automation and jobs going away to robots. Are school makerspaces enough to address the upcoming need for Computer Science educated workers? 
How about self-driving trucks? That will eliminate about 10 MILLION jobs. I’m not sure any other the makerspaces I’m seeing are going to help on things like that. Here’s my thought: coding and tech are the grammar of the future. Who wants to be tech illiterate during their career? We have to quit seeing making and coding as electives and see them for what they are: the incubator for future creatives in the workforce. Imagine being around in the early 1880’s and saying “the whole steam engine thing is not interesting to me.” That’s a pretty scary idea for a nation. And tech is (and will be) far more necessary and pervasive than steam power ever was.


Thanks for joining us, and letting the Tynker community learn a bit more about you!  


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About Daniel Rezac

Daniel Rezac is the Education Community Manager at Tynker. He's been a science teacher, a technology coach, STEAM Coordinator, and school Tech Director working with students from Pre-K to adults. Feel free to reach out to him at daniel [at] tynker.com.