Revolutionary Common Sense
MicroSociety Inc. (MSI) inspires and empowers students by giving them their own learning laboratories and innovation hubs inside their schools. Organic and dynamic, the MicroSociety model nurtures a culture of possibility and ignites children’s entrepreneurial spirit by offering them a wide range of opportunities to discover where they fit and what it takes to succeed. This is the palette young people need to paint their own future and to become the powerful thinkers and leaders we need in our global, technology-driven world. Building a culture that ensures each child flourishes is central to our work, and we provide daily tangible proof that our approach works.
Be the Change
A nonprofit consulting organization founded in 1991 by the model’s inventor, Dr. George H. Richmond, MSI offers training services to teachers and administrators at existing and new MicroSociety sites as well as an extensive library of curriculum and other products. MSI’s professional-development model is built on 30 years of experience working with a wide range of schools, from high-poverty and low-performing to low-poverty and high-performing, and everything in between. The organization’s focus is on nurturing exceptional 21st-century school-wide learning environments that use real-world learning experiences to inform curriculum and instruction throughout the day. Reach out to learn more about our services.
Our mission is to create the ultimate in project-based learning environments that motivate children to learn and succeed by engaging them in a world that makes classroom lessons relevant and connects them to their communities, real life, and the future.
Why and How
Why: Our goal is to graduate confident, curious risk takers and connected global thinkers motivated to break with the status quo. To do so, we equip teachers with an environment of real-world opportunities that helps them tap the extraordinary in every child.
How: As young as four years old, our students discover and hone their skills and develop a resume of work, citizenship and service experience in a community of their own design. Our youth leaders build character, take initiative, seek diversity and collaborate in teams to succeed in their miniature worlds.
Where We Work
There are MicroSociety programs in 20 states across the United States.
We work with all kinds of sites, in all kinds of settings:
- 64% public, 18% charter, 15% magnet, 3% private schools
- 66% urban, 19% rural, 15% suburban locations
- 85% elementary grades, 15% middle grades
- 90% whole-school model, 10% after-school curriculum
Our U.S. schools establish MicroSocieties for many different reasons. Some aim to create critical thinkers capable of solving problems in a complex world and to give children voice and choice and a new sense of responsibility. Some seek to nurture the entrepreneurial spirit or promote science, technology, and math skills. Others use MicroSociety experiences to increase college and career readiness and build a work ethic. Still others want to offer new challenges to the gifted and talented, capitalize on the gifts of those with special needs, or reduce racial or cultural isolation.
Though they may have different goals, all MicroSociety schools are committed to offering students many paths to success and preparing students for the responsibilities of citizenship. And they are dedicated to increasing parent involvement, and establishing beneficial mentoring relationships between working adults and working children.
MicroSociety schools outside the U.S. — currently in Canada, Bermuda, Colombia, Kenya, and South Korea — adapt their programs to reflect their country’s economic and political systems and their needs and aspirations.