the list

Have You Seen The List?

As Thanksgiving and the holidays approach, I like to take a some time to reflect on the the things I’m grateful for, and take stock of how great life is. If I were to boil the things I’m grateful for down to a single item, that one item would be ‘opportunity.’ Opportunity is the thing that enables us to make the most of our passions, desires, and motivation, so that we can design lives we love through our persistence and hard work. On the eve of Thanksgiving, I like to think of the things that have both given me amazing opportunities, and that have helped me make the most of the opportunities I’ve had (and some things that are opportunities in and of themselves). Here’s a short list of the top 23 things I’m grateful for: The people I’ve met. I’ve had the good fortune of meeting some amazing people in the companies I’ve worked at and worked with, in my networking circles, and even people I have simply shared advice with on Linkedin. These great people make opportunities worth taking. The game “Cards Against Humanity.” There are few things more entertaining than an evening with good friends and the …

AltSchool: New SF Bay Tech Startup is Creating the Future of Education

Altschool, a San Francisco Bay area startup founded by former Google product manager, Max Ventilla, is an innovative new school system that combines advanced technology with traditional education. AltSchool’s “micro-schools” are modeled after the one-room schoolhouses of the past. Students aged from pre-kindergarten to eighth grade learn together in classrooms with no more than 25 students and two teachers each. For a tuition of around $20,000, students study a curriculum focused on project-based learning and real-world lessons. “The point of education is to prepare our kids for the world that they’re going to actually experience as adults,” Ventilla explained. Students go on weekly field trips and complete activities like designing irrigation systems and building drones. Micro-schools have no principals or other administrators, but instead use technology to connect teachers with students and parents. Engineers and software developers work closely with teachers in their classrooms to constantly improve the AltSchool platform. “All engineers have ‘buddy teachers’ and study what’s going on in the classroom so they can learn about what’s most effective,” said Director of Education, Carolyn Wilson. “It lets us iterate very quickly and improve very, very quickly and validate for others that this is actually an approach that can …