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#FailFest: Using Improv and Embracing Failure to Open Up Creativity

Pennsylvania Convention Center, Terrace Ballroom I

Participate and share: Interactive session
Recorded Session
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Educational Strategist & Public Speaker
HookerTech LLC
Carl Hooker has spent the past 24 years in education as a teacher and administrator focused on the thoughtful integration of technology and innovation in schools. He consults for multiple districts across the country and is a frequent speaker at state and national events. He’s also a 7-time author, 4-time podcast host, advisor to multiple ed tech companies, and National Faculty Emeritus for Future Ready Schools. Carl is also the co-founder of – A social media platform made by educators for educators. For full-bio, go to

Session description

Failure makes a great teacher. During this interactive workshop, you'll take some risks and reflect as part of the learning process through a series of improv activities designed to help students activate the creative side of their brains. Get ready to move and think, and leave your inhibitions at the door.

Purpose & objective

Participants of this session will walk away with:
1. Research and brain science behind the importance of creating a culture that embraces risk.
2. Activities that can be used right away in a classroom or PD setting that involve a wide variety of technology.
3. Resources beyond the session that they can build on with their own staff and students.

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First 10 minutes: Table-setting - discussing the science and research behind creating a culture of risk-taking and innovation.
5 minutes: Showing some practical examples of how this happens.
40 minutes: The group participates in a series of activities to model risk-taking, failure, and innovative problem-solving.
5 minutes: Reflection and take-aways.

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Supporting research

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Session specifications

Instructional design & delivery
Grade level:
Skill level:
Coaches, Professional developers, Teachers
Attendee devices:
Devices useful
Attendee device specification:
Smartphone: Android, iOS, Windows
Laptop: Chromebook, Mac, PC
Tablet: Android, iOS, Windows
ISTE Standards:
For Educators:
  • Foster a culture where students take ownership of their learning goals and outcomes in both independent and group settings.
  • Create learning opportunities that challenge students to use a design process and computational thinking to innovate and solve problems.