Esther Wojcicki joins I want Her Job for a third time to discuss her latest project, Tract.app, a new student directed online resource for peer to peer learning where teenagers create content for children 8+.
The Tract leaning pathways contain courses that your kids will actually want to learn. Courses such as The Science and Ethics of Junk Food Engineering, How Cheetahs Run as Fast as a Car, What does it take to become a comic book artist, What Makes a Great Soccer Player, Pokémon Plant & Animal Biology are created by teenagers and have a project based approach. This learning community supports Esther’s core belief in giving kids 20% of their time to independently pursue their interests.
Esther Wojcicki has experienced tremendous success as a mother and a teacher. Each of her daughters have impressive career achievements. Daughter Susan Wojcicki, is the CEO of YouTube, Janet Wojcicki, is a professor of pediatrics at the University of California, San Francisco; and Anne Wokcicki is the founder and CEO of genetic testing company 23andMe.
Esther has been squarely at the center of Silicon Valley for her entire career as an influential, deeply loved and respected teacher. Thousands of students who went through the journalism program Esther created at Palo Alto High School (and later on to pivotal roles in the tech industry and others) often consider the experience life-changing both for the work they did, and for the respect, autonomy and the bar set by Esther.
Given her wisdom and experience as a mother and teacher, we spoke with Esther in May 2020, in episode 117, about her thoughts on opportunities for the K-12 education system to evolve throughout the COVID-19 crisis. As Esther shared in our conversation, the current education system is operating at a model that is 100 years old. Esther shared ideas for modernizing education through a hybrid model that encourages students to practice creativity, while also spending a portion of their time on projects they are interested in pursuing. Esther shared tips for parents on how to inspire younger, and older, students during homeschooling. The new Tract.app is a perfect extension of Esther’s goals to help students thrive.
Once you listen to episode #117, we recommend you go back and download episode #96, recorded in 2019. In that conversation Esther shared the guiding principles she has used to raise her wildly successful daughters, as well as empower students through her journalism program. We discussed Esther’s best-selling book, How To Raise Successful People: Simple Lessons For Radical Results, and the parenting philosophy Esther uses called TRICK: trust, respect, independence, collaboration and kindness.
If you want to be a part of the Tract.app pilot group, sign up with the code “WOJSPECIAL” and receive free access for a year. As a. Member of the pilot group, you will be asked to offer your feedback on the tract.app and courses.
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