If you are like me, you sometimes hook on to ideas and run with them.
The excitement, the possibilities, it all pulls you in and you just go with it.
But those around you may not be entirely sure of what it is that you are trying to do. Being able to clearly communicate, at a level where everyone understands your thinking, is an important component to effecting change.
Yesterday, I had the opportunity to present the #OSSEMOOC concept to a group of interested people. Luckily, before my presentation, a colleague worked with me to help me distill the concept down to its key components, in a language that was meaningful to educators at all levels.
As we begin to work on our next projects in response to user requests and feedback, I think it is a good time to take a step…
He asked me for our story about the time Commander Hadfield tweeted me to say that up in the ISS, he had watched the video my students helped create. You can read the story here, but the full version, including the connections that led to the connections that led to the event, is told below.
There are over 80 workshops for educators to attend over the next 2 days, and some of those presenters are waking up this morning and asking themselves, “What am I doing here?”.
Presenting can be scary. It can be intimidating. We, as educators, can be evaluative. We all want to do well. It’s our culture.
What are you doing here?
You are modelling best practice. You are sharing your learning.
You are enabling others to learn.
You are connecting learners. You are enriching lives. You are demonstrating courage.
You are walking the talk. You are Leading Learning.
What are the rest of us doing here?
We are here creating a culture of learning – a place where it is safe to share, where sharing is valued, and where the people with the courage to share are encouraged and applauded for putting themselves in that vulnerable position for our benefit.
We are nurturing all learners.
Congratulations, and thank you, to every single educator who has stepped forward today and tomorrow to share learning with the rest of us.
As we have travelled throughout the province this week, we have heard loud and clear that we need an easier entry point for our education leaders to start the connecting process.
Last Tuesday, connected leaders met to discuss how they became connected leaders – the catalyst that got them started. Here are some of the things we learned. Which of these do you need? Which of these can you bring to a leader you know to help them connect?
1. TIME! When can we possibly find the time to connect?
Educators are busy. Nobody disputes that! But could connecting actually make your life easier? YES IT CAN! You can pose a question on Twitter 24/7 and get an answer in minutes. We have heard many stories with this theme.
Learn to make time. Start with 15 minutes each day. Some of us do “Tea and Twitter”, some of us start…
Because I strongly believe this, I often wonder what it takes to get people writing and sharing their thinking.
It’s easy to put “blogging” at the end of the “to do” list.
Dean Shareski made me think about this a lot recently when he showed up in Thunder Bay and asked us why JOY was not at the centre of the work we do with kids.
Reflecting on my own writing, I realized that the JOY had gone out of sharing my learning and writing my blog. And when it isn’t fun for me, it is even less fun for my readers.
As I was struggling with how to put some fun into blogging, there was Dean again, and Brian Harrison, with a new MEME. This one is a blogging challenge to bring some fun and silliness back into sharing and writing.
Dean: “And besides, it’s just a good excuse to write which is never a bad thing.”
So here I am, biting on the challenge, with the hopes of reminding myself why we blog, read, share, think, and start conversations.
So thank you Lee Kolbert, Dean Shareski, and Brian Harrison, all bloggers I learn so much from. You model such excellent collaborative practices, and you are catalysts to get the rest of us sharing again.
What is the most interesting place you have visited? The northwest coast of Newfoundland – Gros Morne to Saint Anthony.
IOS or Android? Family of 4: 4 MacBook Pros, 4 iPads, 5 iPods, 4 iPhones, Apple TV. Um….
Would you rather be a hammer or a nail-Why? Hammer. I could never be a nail.
What was your first part time job? Clerk at the local pharmacy. I was 13 and called in because they were short staffed. It was on the job training and I stayed for five years!
Left on a desert island, what 3 books do you take with you?Any of these:
7. When do you usually write your blog posts?Life is a blog post. They are always swirling.
8. Pizza- thin crust or regular? Thin. No question.
9. What was the topic of your first blog post? Hmmm, good question. Here is the first one from my last blog, the oldest I can find online: Ringing In the New Year With New Ideas. It’s about what we learn when we connect with people outside our immediate field of interest, and how this can move our thinking and learning forward.
10. Did you ever own an 8-Track cassette? No, but my father did. We listened to it whenever we went “up the road” to the trapline. I can still hear his favourites: “Big John, big bad John”.
11. Lennon or McCartney? McCartney, though I want to say Lennon
4. List 11 bloggers. (I have chosen *northern* bloggers – all Canadians, mainly from Ontario and Manitoba. Be sure to visit them!)
5. Post 11 questions for the bloggers you nominate to answer, and let all the bloggers know they have been nominated. Don’t nominate a blogger who has nominated you.
Okay, northern bloggers, I have some questions for you:
(with a caution from Lee Kolbert: In response to a FB post about this meme,Dan Callahan made a really good point. He said, “This seems like a plot to get the bloggers of the world to answer most of their potential credit card/iTunes security questions.” While that is certainly not the intent, (as always) be careful about what you post online. )
1. What was the first “subject area” you studied after leaving high school?
2. If you could cook anything, what would you cook for supper tonight?
3. What makes you stop and pause during your day?
4. Cats or Dogs?
5. If you could have only one Pinterest Board, what would the topic be?
6. What was the catalyst that got you blogging in the first place?
7. What is one (funny) childhood misconception that you had, or that you have experienced with a young child? (for example, we lived near Manilla, Ontario during the eruption of Mount Pinatubo. My 5-year-old daughter watched the news and thought it was right near our house!)
8. What was your favourite summer job?
9. Where do you find flow?
10. What was one personal challenge you faced in 2013?