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Educurious Annual Report 2022

By September 13, 2022September 19th, 2022No Comments

We’ve Learned to Live in the Moment

The last two years were clearly the most challenging I can recall in my 30 years in education. Facing a global pandemic, educators had to abandon trusted classroom techniques, separate from their students, and pivot to a new world of remote and hybrid learning. Little was known on how to do this, and educators were challenged to engage their students, cultivate connections remotely, keep up morale, and navigate isolation.

We were all hopeful at the start of the 2021–2022 school year that we were emerging from the darkness and returning to the familiar: classrooms filled with curious learners; educators fostering powerful learning outcomes; and community, collaboration, and joy.

The stark reality, however, is that in some ways, the 2021 return to school was even harder than the previous year. With each new wave of the virus, weary educators, students, and their families continued to experience losses. Schools vacillated between in-person and remote learning models to keep communities safe, but it brought disruption, stress and anxiety to many. And of course, the ongoing pandemic wasn’t the only thing putting stress on educators, students, and their families.

For these reasons, it was more important than ever for Educurious to listen and learn from our partners. For over 12 years, we’ve delivered powerful models of learning to educators and students. While that is still core to our mission, it’s not what was always needed last year. Because of our deep relationships, district partners felt safe in sharing their challenges, fears, and the realities they were facing.

Some partners needed space to navigate the current landscape, and weren’t ready to make the shift to project-based learning (PBL) yet. Others wanted more intensive implementation support and deep learning around hybrid models for equitable PBL. By listening to our partners, we learned how to meet their needs and provide support wrapped with flexibility, sensitivity, and empathy.

Throughout it all, however, there have been—and continue to be—so many bright spots of hope. What brings me joy is the resilience I see in educators and learners, and the inextinguishable spark for learning. Curiosity has not been quelled, as is evident by the remarkable young people that our partner schools, teachers, and leaders reach. We are proud to serve them.

As we head toward brighter days, I’m grateful to lead a team of colleagues who are dedicated to launching learners into lives of purpose and hope, and to support the educators, administrators, and communities who teach them.

With hope and gratitude,


Jane Chadsey

Our Focus Hasn’t Changed

Collaborate with states, districts, schools, and educators to drive impact

Educurious sparks curiosity and prepares learners for healthy and productive lives by focusing on three areas of work, which alone are impactful, but when combined are exponentially powerful.

Implement high-quality project-based learning

According to two new studies by the University of Southern California and Michigan State University, the evidence is clear: project-based learning is an effective strategy for all students, outperforming traditional curricula not only for high-achieving students, but across grade levels and racial and socioeconomic groups. But making the shift to PBL isn’t always easy. We help with that.

Develop and scale high-quality resources

Science and social studies are our specialties, and we are PBL pioneers in these areas, having created our first set of high school units 12 years ago and expanded to grades K–12 in the years since.

Codesign custom offerings

We create specialized resources that engage students as critical thinkers, foster civic engagement, and are culturally affirming, such as the state history curricular suite we developed for the state of Washington. Reach out if you have an idea you’d like to collaborate on with us!

A Year in Highlights

Deepen Learning: Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI)

The murder of George Floyd in May of 2020 catalyzed a wave of racial reckoning in the United States. As an organization of educators, we wanted to deepen our knowledge of and commitment to the principles of diversity, equity, and inclusion, while ensuring they guide our curricular and professional learning resources.

With generous support from the William & Flora Hewlett Foundation, each Educurious staff member completed an intensive course with the National Equity Project to deepen skills for designing and coaching for equity.

Partnering with Leadership Tomorrow, Educurious staff and board members conducted an equity audit of our offerings, which resulted in the revision of all middle school social studies courses.

Educurious created a Curriculum Advisory Committee for Equity to review curriculum through a DEI lens, support educators in implementing equity internalization protocols, and inform the development of Ethnic Studies units.

Expand collaboration: Partnerships drive impact

In the spirit of going farther together instead of faster alone, Educurious believes in the power of the collective to drive impact for learners; choosing strategic partners is a cornerstone of our work.

We continued our robust partnership with National Geographic by creating free, digital elementary and middle school curriculum units for science and social studies, as well as Skill Builder lessons to guide educators in implementation. The National Geographic Resource Library sees over 35 million visitors per year.

Educurious was awarded a Teaching With Primary Sources grant by the Library of Congress to develop PBL units with a more inclusive portrayal of the histories of Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC). These are now posted as Open Educational Resources on our website.

Educurious was also awarded a grant from The Boeing Company to advance equity in STEM education, which will result in new professional learning opportunities for educators in 2022.

Deliver excellence: Online and on the ground with educators and learners

Teaching is an art and a science. Our approach comes from both the head and the heart, and by being with educators on the ground in classrooms or virtually online, we are able to best understand their craft and deliver what they tell us they need.

Educators value choice and voice. To deliver on that, we developed our first free, available-to-anyone, Open Educational Resource (OER) units in social studies. The Social Studies Collective consists of three project-based learning units that guide learners through answering critical questions such as, How can journalism challenge inequality and injustice?

We are in our second year of working with the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education on two exciting projects. One is to codesign a year-long program to improve learning outcomes through out-of-school programming and extended learning times. The second is to develop professional learning modules to support implementation of their new history curriculum, Investigating History.

We are thrilled to be in our third year of work with the Idaho STEM Action Center to support STEM certification for Idaho schools through our rigorous STEM Leadership Academy. This year-long Academy supports the implementation of school-wide, STEM project-based learning.

Sneak Peek: Collaborative Partnerships

A sampling of exciting new projects underway at Educurious


We partner with other nonprofits to boost impact in school districts and ease the way for school systems working with multiple partners. We think this makes good sense: together we are even better.


Kent School District

Kent, WA

In collaboration with OpenSciEd, we are supporting seventh- and eighth-grade educators to implement OpenSciEd instructional units, with a focus on phenomenon-based science instruction and accompanying pedagogies.

Educurious will become a certified OpenSciEd professional learning provider as a result of this engagement.

Sneak Peek: New School Models

A sampling of exciting new projects underway at Educurious


We partner with schools to redesign what school looks like by codesigning project-based learning curriculum that integrates language arts, math, science, and social studies into interdisciplinary units.


Vanguard Academy

Moses Lake, WA

We are codesigning curriculum for a new school model centered interdisciplinary PBL and student-driven inquiry. Projects vary in length and complexity, and are organized around academic standards and real issues the community and broader world are facing.

We can’t wait to see how the interdisciplinary projects will resonate with Vanguard students after the Academy opens this fall.

The driving question for the first project asks students: From our jeans to our genes, what makes us who we are?

Sneak Peek: Professional Learning

A sampling of exciting new projects underway at Educurious


Educators are continuous learners, yet their time is more in demand than ever. They have told us they want ways to continue deepening their content knowledge and sharpening their instructional practice skills without having to take long courses or dedicate entire days that they don’t have available. To meet their needs, we are creating ways for teachers to learn at their own pace, in short bursts, and through a variety of mediums, such as videos, podcasts, and infographics.


Tahoma School District

Maple Valley, WA

We are designing bite-sized, video-based learning for professional learning communities to use as they implement Educurious middle school science units. We are excited about scaling this model of sustainable, curriculum-based professional learning.

Fast Facts

Where we work

Students Reached


Educators Reached


Thank you!


To the numerous educators, students, parents, donors, sponsors, partners, staff, and friends who have continued to support the Educurious mission, we offer our sincerest gratitude.

Together, we can help launch young people into lives of purpose and hope.