Teacher Redesign

school sign with "connect the dots" theme

An effort to “rebrand” teaching as an activity of connecting the dots. The purpose is to displace the old, tired (or, in their words: “borderline infantilizing”) tropes & icons that represent teachers & teaching (what one person called “apple crapple”): ABCs, 123s, chalkboards, pencils, apples, one-room school houses, etc.

Do a Google image search of the word “teacher” or “teaching” & I bet you 25 bucks the first 25 images will include one of these worn-out symbols. Perhaps I’m guilty of perpetuating these same tropes; after all, the image at the head of my blog here is a photo of dry-erase markers—a 21st Century version of chalk.

Anyway, this redesign is exciting to me because it conveys teaching as sophisticated & educated. The image of “connecting the dots” represents learning as a process of creating relationships between ideas, people & objects.

Here’s how Fast Company describes it: http://www.fastcodesign.com/1668933/could-a-rebranding-help-give-teachers-the-prestige-they-deserve

Studio 360’s video explains why they settled on the design they chose & what its various elements represent: http://www.studio360.org/2012/jan/20/teacher-redesign-revealed/

Hyperakt, who created the visual vocabulary of the redesign, explains their work here: http://hyperakt.com/work-detail/293

Hyperakt also has downloadable artwork & other explanations here: http://inspireteachers.org/

I also want to add that the “apple crapple” includes not only outdated visual icons (the apples, ABCs, etc.) but also outdated & simplistic arguments & ideologies that enter the discourse whenever American education is debated: need for reform, bad teachers, government interference, negative effect of unions, etc.


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