TED Conversations

Juliette LaMontagne

Founder & Managing Director, Breaker


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What are the advantages/disadvantages of learning models that exist outside of traditional educational institutions?

With the growing number of alternative learning pathways and opportunities to better serve the needs of individual students, what's working best? And what can we learn from the failures and tensions? Where and how have the models in the margins effectively disrupted the status quo?

I'll add to the conversation my current initiative, Breaker - driving alternative learning and social innovation by mobilizing interdisciplinary teams of young creative collaborators to design product solutions to global challenges.

This Live Conversation will start on Feb. 15, 2012, 1:00pm EST/ 10:00am PST


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  • Feb 15 2012: When I was in high school I participated in program that was like a mini-Peace Corps. They gave students training in leadership, cross-cultural skills, and community organizing, and sent us to Latin America. It is called Amigos de las Americas. (www.amigoslink.org) I lived with a poor family in rural Mexico one summer and Nicaragua another summer. It changed my perspective and my life in a way that traditional education never could have.

    Now I work for a nonprofit called 3 Day Startup (www.3daystartup.org) that has the mission of giving university students a more practical education in entrepreneurship. We partner with universities to provide a sort of laboratory where students from different disciplines can collaborate. They come in with ideas and skills and we create an environment where they can "lean by doing" also called experiential learning. I am planning one of these programs in NYC in April, and I would like to invite you, Juliette LaMontagne, to come observe it in action. (nyc.3daystartup.org for more info)
    • Feb 15 2012: I definitely agree on educating through giving responsibility to students. This agency on startups makes it very easy and it is great to make young people experience that their ideas are possible to be realised or transformed by help other young people.

      In europe, there isYouth initiative, it is an EU commision activity under Youth in action where young people can submit their ideas and plans and get money on making it real. I did it Couple years ago and it provided me with a great opportunity and a life experience. Young people just need to see a goal in the what they are doing!

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