Embark Education

Designing an experience that trusts educators to lead


The Problem

School as we know it needs to change so that it truly prepares all students for a life of possibility. And yet, professional learning for teachers and others in education mirrors a typical day at school – we sit, we listen, we talk, we reflect. What if professional learning aimed to create community and connections, offered new exposure to what’s possible, and trusted educators to make connections to their work? 

The Work

Distill the most essential “ingredients” of Embark’s youth and adult experiences. Develop a prototype for Embark’s first ever 3-day version of the Iterative Residency - called an Iterative Intensive – that the team can pilot and evolve as an offering that helps educators become familiar with learner-centered approaches to teaching and learning.

The Learning

Franklin Street led a design process to help the Embark team:

Ask questions.

We began by asking: What is Embark’s secret sauce? How do those on the inside describe it? And therefore, what do others really need to understand to grasp your work? We talked to learners, their family members, teachers and community members to understand what makes Embark’s school especially unique and impactful for those who attend.

Capture and tell stories.

From there, we distilled five ingredients – trust, authenticity, community, curation, and humility – that are present throughout the lived experience of Embark community members. Finally, we developed collateral and communications to help others internalize what they mean.

design unforgettable experiences.

Lastly, we created a prototype for the first ever 3-day “Iterative Intensive” that would bring educators to Embark to understand its learner centered approach. 

The Outcome

The team at Embark has used the five “ingredients” to align as a team and sharpen experiences for students and teachers. The prototype we built together formed the backbone of their first ever Interative Intensive, which launches in March 2023.