Learning Hive


The Learning Hive is connected learning in action. It is a community of organizations that serve educators and youth in out-of-school experiences. Together, they work to create connected learning experiences to not only engage educators and youth, but to support them as they learn together to develop necessary 21st century skills.


Connected Learning is a framework for thinking about learning that, while drawing from successful approaches of the past, is also based on evidence of what works best in the contemporary context and in the digital age. It is a set of educational and design values and principles that can be adapted and applied to any context. It re-imagines the learning experience of educators and young people by connecting three spheres of societal relevance—community, industry and education. It ensures that young people learn the traditional reading, writing, and numeracy skills, while inspiring them, along with educators, to be creative, analytical problem solvers. It provides for more engaging, relevant, and enduring learning experiences that prepare educators to support youth as they prepare for college, the workforce, and citizenship in a democracy.


With the ultimate goal of connecting the learning that takes place across the three spheres of relevance—community, industry and education—the Hive experience should:

  • Transform Colorado into a learning platform for educators and young people, making “anytime, anywhere” learning possible;
  • Value and make visible the learning that takes place out of school—in the community and within industry—and connect it to formal learning experiences;
  • Create a cohesive a collaborative network of organizations and institutions that promote learning opportunities
  • Be a catalyst for more relevant teacher preparation and more engaging learning experiences in schools and other formal learning spaces;
  • Create multiple ways for educators and young people to learn and redefine achievement to increase the number of youth who pursue STEAM programs of study and professions.


In an attempt to serve educators and youth in various learning environments the Hive assumes three forms—physical, mobile and virtual.

  • The physical space will be designed to create compelling learning experiences that go beyond mere functionality to connect at a deeper level with educators’ latent or expressed needs;
  • The mobile component provides an opportunity to take those compelling learning experiences to rural areas of Colorado by transforming other physical spaces into powerful tools to inspire innovation and creativity;
  • The virtual space serves as an online resource for educators and youth while making everyone aware of the various learning opportunities that are happening all throughout Colorado.


The idea for a Hive Learning Network began with the MacArthur Foundation’s digital media and learning initiative as it explored how digital media are changing how young people learn and what that means for education. Launched in New York City in 2007, the New York Hive is hosted by the Mozilla Foundation. The Chicago Hive Learning Network was created in 2009 and is hosted by DePaul University. Other Hive Learning Network locations are in development in Toronto and San Francisco.