Episode #116: Evolving to Relentlessly Rethink Learning with Lainie Rowell

Barbara BrayRethinking Learning Podcast

Episode #116: Evolving to Relentlessly Rethink Learning with Lainie Rowell

Lainie Rowell is an educator, author, podcaster, and international speaker. As a consultant, Lainie’s client list ranges from Fortune 100 companies like Apple and Google to school districts and independent schools. She is a TEDx speaker and has been a consultant for the Orange County Department of Education since 2014. Lainie is also the co-host of the Lemonade Learning Podcast. 

Lainie’s background

For more than 23 years in education, I have taught elementary, secondary, and higher education. I also served in a district-level leadership position supporting 22,000 students and 1,200 teachers at 33 schools. Since 2014, Lainie has been a consultant for the Orange County Department of Education’s Institute for Leadership Development facilitating professional learning for administrators. As a consultant, I specialize in working with other educators to find innovative and sustainable ways to transform teaching and learning.

What it was like for Lainie as a student

My K-12 experience was not one of a motivated student. I preferred to focus on sports and the social aspects of school. As a psychology major, I started volunteering at a non-public school for learners with special needs. That is where I fell in love with working with kids and immediately decided to become a teacher which, given my focus on academics in K-12, shocked my entire family.

Book, Evolving Learner

I co-authored Evolving Learner with Kristy Andre and Lauren Steinmann. We set out to write Evolving Learner because we wanted to curate the most innovative, effective, and sustainable approaches to professional learning. A huge part of that journey was clarity on three big ideas:

  1. We must be willing to learn from kids, peers, and the world.
  2. Continuous improvement through cycles of inquiry is the most effective form of professional learning.
  3. Social-emotional learning (SEL) is essential for ALL learners, both kids, and adults.


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