What is WEquil.School?

Updated: 3 days ago

Dear Parents,

During the pandemic my sister Aila and I created our own virtual learning community WEquil School to help kids learn independently. GoGuardian interviewed us about in June of 2020 if you want the background story. What started as a necessity during the lockdowns became an opportunity to learn, grow and create by doing real things to prepare for the real world. We began learning full time without grades or a curriculum by writing stories, building apps, teaching classes, scientific research, performing arts, applied mathematics, organizing clubs, filming documentaries and starting businesses!

When our school opened up we decided not to go back. We wrote a letter titled, "Dear Public Education System" listing our reasons why. In that letter we invited leaders of our school district to speak with us about our learning community and project-based learning (PBL) approach to education. Someone did...and after hearing us out they admitted that they homeschooled their kids for some of the same reasons.


So we never went back to public school...a place most kids admit makes them tired, stressed, and bored. Now we help other families learn to let go of grades and standardized curriculums by embracing their natural curiosity...with help. If that sounds too good to be true, sign up for our free week long trial! What have you got to lose!


Step one is helping kids learn to take charge so parents can be coaches instead of policeman. Becoming an adult means taking responsibility, and we have a Creative Learning Process that does just that. We also wrote an article on how parents can discover great project ideas on their own! Our goal is to help your kids...so if you can do it on your own then we support you!

You can also follow our weekly process below which starts by setting goals with parents on Mondays and presenting accomplishments on Fridays. These goals always involve a "Creative Project" that helps us create something valuable from our strengths and interests.

Our weekly process also involves helping parents use a variety of online tools, local resources, and creative activities like those linked below. We work with parents to tailor activities to each child's wants and needs. For example, my sister and I play a lot of basketball, practice martial arts, cook our own food, go on adventures, play music, go dancing, and "shop" with dad!

My sister and I lead WEquil.School, but we learned how from our dad, Joe McPhail, who is a Young Alumni Award winner at ISU. He was the first undergraduate at ISU to be hired by the Economics department to teach, and he did that his sophomore year! Now he teaches adults at WEquil Capital do the same thing we do at WEquil.School, but on research and scholarly peer-reviewed journal articles such as this chapter on "Machine Learning and Banking Implications" that he published with our mom.

We came up with the Creative Learning Process watching our dad teach us and other kids during the pandemic. Most kids are camera shy, but Gavin's parents are friends of the family so they let us share it on our WEquil.School YouTube channel. Notice how our dad lets Gavin lead the discussion with his interests...and helps guide him toward a project idea that was fundamentally still coming from Gavin's strengths and interests. Now that's motivation!

For those with interest, our dad also provides classes as part of our Accelerator Program. These classes are probably best for parents who feel like their kids are bored in school, have lots of energy, or that feel constrained by curriculums. Joe McPhail's students can be any age, but acceptance requires a brief interview. Parents can find out if the Accelerator program is right for their kid by asking about it on our Facebook Group.

These classes help kids engage in adult conversations for long periods of time by channeling their curiosity with lots of visuals, examples, silly jokes, and songs! In this example, Joe McPhail creates a project on "What is Money" ... holding the attention of two eight year old boys for two hours. Notice how they are all engaged and helping discover together!

By the end, they had all contributed to an applied mathematics project that used various technologies like Google Sheets, Google Docs, and Canva ... shared takeaways, and composed a song to help them remember complex concepts like barter systems and exponential growth! Here is another example where my dad teaches kids Game Theory by creating and playing a game with them over Zoom using Google Sheets.

Students enrolled in our Accelerator Program have an open invitation to join me on my TV Show with Dr. Donald Cohen. He has a PhD in Clinical Psychology, is the author of ten published books, and has led his own private practice for forty years. Here is one of the shows we did together shortly after the tragic event at Uvalde public school in Texas.

Dr Don left his own TV Show "Kids are Talking with Dr Don" to start We Voices with me after we met during this inspirational episode about youth entrepreneurship. Four of the five kids in this show are homeschoolers applying a project-based learning approach like what we bring to WEquil.School. Parents interested in learning how energized your kids can be should watch this video.

Kids learn to communicate like responsible adults at WEquil.School. We livestream long form discussions that make learning fun every Monday and Friday at 9am Eastern. We provide "Themes of the Week" based on recommendations from students in our programs. When you publish projects on WEquil.App, which is free download, we give you a shout out so be sure to watch!

My sister and I do projects just like our students! We try to lead by example, so we have lots of examples for parents on our YouTube channel. Feel free to join us and share comments and questions. You can also see the hundreds of projects we have published in our Digital Resume on WEquil.App!


We have a Facebook Group for parents that are interested in our approach to learning who want to meet others. Those of you on Twitter might enjoy our Tweet Threads on Video Projects and how to do Project-Based Learning! We provide free help to parents who share their projects on WEquil.App ... a cloud storage solution for parents to safeguard their kids "Digital Resumes" until their kids are old enough to showcase to the public ... helping them get into top universities and never forget all the amazing things they did and learned along the way! We also have a mobile"WEquil App" on the App Store thanks in large part to an amazing team of professionals that reached out to me after watching my interview with the Google app developer Pawan Kumar about my online school.


Conclusion


I am very grateful to all the people who have given us support along the way. There are too many to list here so if I did not include your name please reach out to me.


  1. Brandon Bal https://youtu.be/1WDn7X24ZCQ

  2. Brandon Bergman, PhD https://youtu.be/4y7ZzFLeJxY

  3. Brian Redmond https://youtu.be/LHC9l9cluts

  4. Jessica Brauser https://youtu.be/sEmCWnfkE78

  5. Donald Cohen, PhD https://youtu.be/vKK_9DL0uxg

  6. Danielle Cox https://youtu.be/dEu9eqdLOpU

  7. Rishi Daryanani https://youtu.be/17ctKr9l86w

  8. Zaynab Dean https://youtu.be/6prSoqx_Qhw

  9. Nathen Den Herder https://youtu.be/jmDOLKtQWcc

  10. Candice Dugger https://youtu.be/NTOfGhAf76E

  11. Evelyn Educated https://youtu.be/dqsS94crrig

  12. Prince Dede Ejueyitchie https://youtu.be/EIMlfbZFywE

  13. Hillary Everts https://youtu.be/-MZJroyExCU

  14. Bob Irving https://youtu.be/mXh3k87gs4k

  15. Pawan Kumar https://youtu.be/EhTmfHv5yME

  16. Ainsley McDougal https://youtu.be/KW6RvLqh8Nk

  17. Michael McKenzie https://youtu.be/rnLUTIL801E

  18. Ari Meltzer https://youtu.be/oYluZWUflho

  19. Mboya Michael https://youtu.be/rF8BIo_cZJ8

  20. Nisha Talagala https://youtu.be/lz-4G-tktwQ

  21. Jason (Anonymous) https://youtu.be/_-5JNVP0u-M

  22. Tawna Perry https://youtu.be/Q8pX7D116Ak

  23. Justin Shell - https://youtu.be/YMIpmgoswp4

  24. Austin and Amy Smith https://youtu.be/SvXH13bO7W4

  25. Antigone Stark https://youtu.be/oE0oOIoZGBU

  26. Lev Sviridov https://youtu.be/-MZJroyExCU

  27. Aaron Weiner, PhD https://youtu.be/benVh3Cp9hg

  28. Wendy Willard https://youtu.be/VhgdwPP75s0

  29. My friends and family

  30. KDAB (Link below)

And a special thanks to all our neighbors who donated clothes and offered us shelter after the fire...and our dog Juna who saved our lives.

Feel free to reach out to me if you have questions. Contact information below.

Sincerely, Sumay Lu McPhail Founder of WEquil.School and CEO of WEquil.App Twitter: https://twitter.com/SumayLu

LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/sumay-mcphail/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/sumay.l.mcphail


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