Learning Tours provide an opportunity for you - educators, young people, and community leaders - to see powerful schools and programs with your own eyes and bring back the learning to your community. Each site has valuable practices and stories to share about what is working and what has been learned through challenges and efforts over time.
“I didn't think I would find original inspiration after 20 years of being a teacher. I thank you for this experience to find more to bring back to my work."~ NYC Learning Tour participant
IDEA organizes both open tours available to individuals and groups, and custom designed tours, in which we work with you to create a tour experience tailored specifically to your community as professional development, youth development, or alongside ongoing organizing and change efforts.
Learning Tours bring together the best of educational site visits and hands-on workshops into one experience. Tours typically include groups and individuals of 20-30 participants visiting three to four sites over two and a half days. Here's what to expect:
IDEA hosts multiple tours around the country each year. Check out our upcoming tour schedule below and sign up as a small group or individual.
You tell us your goals, needs, and interests, and we work with you to design a tour for groups between 10 and 30 people that can help you move your work forward. We’ll discuss timeline, locations, types of sites to visit, and logistics. After deciding on a tour plan, IDEA arranges the site visits, provides information before the tour, facilitates the experience, and shares back documentation of the visit post-tour. We can also work with you and your organization over time to make sense of the visit, reflect with the full community back home, and implement ideas and change plans.
"Working with IDEA to design and facilitate a NYC Learning Tour for our site was a great experience. We were thrilled with the process, final product and ease of the working relationship.Their organizers were able to take our ideas and wishes for what our participants would experience and suggest schools to visit that helped us imagine what was possible at our own schools. They helped to facilitate connections with educators that can serve as resources moving forward. They nailed the logistics of touring a large group of students and teachers through the streets and subways of New York. And, the reflection activities they led helped us integrate the learning into our own context so we arrived home with tangible next steps for making positive school change. We would definitely recommend collaborating with IDEA."~ Lindsey Cox, Project Manager, Partnership for Change
We will work with you to determine a cost rate that makes sense for your school, organization, or community. Total costs include lodging, meals, ground transportation, and facilitator travel expenses.
“The NYC Innovation Tour was a highlight of my 33 year teaching career. I give it an A+.”~ Participant in tour designed for South Burlington High School, VT
Heart of Oregon designed tour to Eugene and Portland, OR - January, 2015
Storify feed collecting posts on Twitter about the tour
New York Tour - April, 2013
Storify feed collecting posts on Twitter and Facebook about the tour
Partnership for Change designed tour to NYC - January, 2013
Blog post about the tour by Dana Bennis
“P4C School Innovation Tour to NYC: Wait, I’m in a Box?!,” article by Partnership for Change tour member Benjamin Roesch
New York Tour - November, 2011
“City schools tour aims to spur democratic education elsewhere,” Gotham Schools article
“IDEA Tours NYC,” blog post by Ammerah Saidi
Twitter Feed from Fall 2011 NY Tour (PDF image)
“Reflections from NYC Tour” Blog post & pictures by IDEA Organizer Manauvaskar Kublall
New York Tour - April, 2011
Twitter Feed from Spring 2011 NY Tour (click graphic to enlarge)