SANDY SPRINGS, Ga - Mary Cantwell believes teachers should get out of the way and allow kids to look at problems and determine solutions without boundaries.
"She is one of the most student-centered teachers I've ever had the pleasure to work with," said Shelley Clifford, Head of Lower School at Mount Vernon Presbyterian School. "Always letting students drive the direction of the lesson; always driving them; always challenging them."
Cantwell teaches Design Thinking, which is part of the Institute for Innovationat Mount Vernon Presbyterian School (MVPS) in Sandy Springs.
"Design thinking is human-centered, problem solving," said Cantwell. "Naturally, you have problems and we're natural problem-solvers. Typically when we do problem solving, we go straight to the solution."
But, with Design Thinking, the idea is to go much deeper into the problem, before determining a solution.
At MVPS, they follow the acronym DEEP.
"We utilize DEEP: Discover, empathize, experiment and produce," said Cantwell. "With this idea Mount Vernon is able to provide our students to provide and make a different. That's huge with me. That's how I learn and that's how I wanted to learn."
Under Cantwell's leadership, Design Thinking is now infused throughout the school. All of the teachers utilize the DT learning approach and received help and support from Cantwell.