Rethinking Learning for the 21st century

The mission of Cohort 21 is to build a community of passionate CIS Ontario educators who are interested in refining and redesigning their practice through the exploration of new pedagogies, ideas, and tools.

Your First Step

Registration for Cohort 21 opens in May. CIS Ontario Schools can submit educators from any division, department or role. The Cohort 21 experience runs from October to April. It is made up of four face to face sessions inter-connected by rich online discussion and supported by our passionate team of volunteer facilitators and coaches.

May - June

Building Community

The first face-to-face session is dedicated to building relationships. It is here that we setup the framework and mindset for the year. This session is also about professional learning networks and the tools that enable them. Participants walk away with a new toolkit and community with whom to connect, collaborate and learn.


Design Thinking

It is during the 2nd session that the “Action Plan” is launched and innovation begins. Through rich Design Thinking protocols participants are asked to think deeply about their practice and identify a challenge that needs addressing. The day concludes when everyone publishes their thinking to their Cohort 21 blog to allow for personalized feedback and support.



Each year the third face-to-face session is focused on innovation. Cohort 21 has formed unique partnerships with many different start-ups and learning organizations. Throughout the day, members will hear from special guests, thought leaders and Cohort 21 alumni to help ignite inspiration and continue to support the Action Plan process.


The End of the Beginning

The final face-to-face session is a celebration of learning. Cohort members connect in small groups to share and reflect on their Action Plan journeys and commit to bringing their learning back to their own schools. The day ends just as the Cohort 21 experience began: with a commitment to the ongoing process of refining practice and exploring new pedagogies and tools.


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CIS Ontario schools participating


Action Plans


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Visitors from around the world

Member Posts from across the Cohort 21 Network

Book Review: The Emotional Lives of Teenagers (L. Damour, Ph.D.)

Published 8/22/2023 in Garth Nichols
Being a parent of teenagers, and a educator that regularly interacts with teenagers in a high-stress environment (read: school), I found this book to be...
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Book Reivew: The Future is Analog (David Sax)

Published 8/9/2023 in Garth Nichols
"The Future is Analog" (2022) is David Sax's follow up to "The Revenge of Analog" (2016). In this very readable, incredibly well researched, with a...
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83. Literacy as liberation with Nikolai Pizarro of Raising Readers

Published 7/18/2023 in [We Are] Teaching Tomorrow
How can education be a way to create more belonging and contribution for young people? To frame this conversation, I want to go back to the...
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82. Critical media literacy in action with Erin Oxland

Published 7/4/2023 in [We Are] Teaching Tomorrow
Listen to the Episode Here How might teachers respond when truth seems to be increasingly devalued in what young people read online? I am joined by...
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No answers: Just Thoughts and Searching for Friends

Published 6/27/2023 in May Lu
I've sat on this for awhile but decided on my run today that this was worth sharing. For starters, this is very much about my experience and what I...
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Cohort 21 Highlight

Season 12 - Express your interest - Highlight video

Published 6/19/2023 in Cohort 21
Since its inception in 2012, the mission of Cohort 21 has been to build a community of passionate CIS Ontario educators interested in refining and...
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Reflections on Season 11

Published 6/14/2023 in Ryan Archer
As season 10 of Cohort21 draws to a close, it's a perfect opportunity to reflect on the process and look forward to the future. This...
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80. Nurturing democracy with Ken Boyd from CIVIX Canada

Published 5/30/2023 in [We Are] Teaching Tomorrow
How can educators nurture a functional democracy when young people struggle to find reliable sources of information? To dig into this question, I am joined...
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79. Digital literacy and social justice with Dr. Kristen Hawley Turner

Published 5/16/2023 in [We Are] Teaching Tomorrow
How is digital literacy related to social justice? Today on the show I have the honour of sitting down with a leading thinker in education,...
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77. Illuminating humanity through journalism with Anita Li

Published 5/16/2023 in [We Are] Teaching Tomorrow
How can the microcosm of the classroom prepare us for the world at large? Today on the show I am joined by news entrepreneur Anita...
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Reflections on Cohort 21 & moving ahead with AI

Published 5/3/2023 in Anne Weldon
Over the last several months, our investigation of AI in the classroom has been nothing short of an eye-opening journey. In the beginning, we talked...
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Published 5/1/2023 in Tamara Doleman
It was a great day of sharing, and of coming to a close for this amazing experience. I had a very inspiring discussion with school...
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The Power of Reflection

Published 4/27/2023 in Cameron Eby
What a treat it is to have time, having a moment to exhale.  I've written and re-written this or another blog post a few times...
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Published 4/27/2023 in HeatherPeters
Well, lovely humans, our time at Cohort 21, season 11, has drawn to a close. It's been almost a week since our final face-to-face and,...
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La grande question - Les évaluations

Published 4/26/2023 in Kirt Charter
Ma grande question et réponse: Comment pouvons-nous, en tant qu'éducateurs, nous éloigner des tests à enjeux élevés afin que nos évaluations soient authentiques et significatives ?" En...
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Final Thoughts - HMW promote and embed a culture that celebrates diverse identities, including LGBTQ+?

Published 4/24/2023 in Charlotte Brown
What question guided your inquiry and action plan? HMW promote and embed a culture that celebrates diverse identities, including LGBTQ+? What did you do and...
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Reflections on the final F2F

Published 4/21/2023 in Making Messes that Matter
As we sit here and reflect on our journey through the year. I am continuously grateful for the opportunities I have been given with Cohort...
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"Sharing Your Learning" Choice Board

Published 4/21/2023 in Shauna Martini
What question guided your inquiry and action plan? (HMW?)  How might we educate teachers in technology based activities/tools? What did you do and what impact did it...
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Sharing your Learning

Published 4/21/2023 in Ashley Cridland
Action plan for 2023/24   Social-emotional: perseverance  Allowing students the space to make mistakes and develop social-emotional skills to foster healthier adults.    Ability to use their entire brain....
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End of the Beginning

Published 4/21/2023 in Heather Lenehan
Grade 3/4: How might we… incorporate more opportunities for student feedback (voice & choice) to promote deeper understanding of strategic learning?
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