Wednesday, December 30, 2009

the ideas project

We are forming contextual networks based on shared themes, interests, passions, beliefs, and ideologies and it is transforming how we interact and establish relations and relationships online.

Finding things really interesting to us and are sharing them with others who feel the same.

The true map is mapped contextually. Always changing.

Building community outside your persona, the excitement, the technology is happening today, in the future, we will be changing the way we share info.

more interviews from the project here:  ideas connect us more than relationships via Brian Solis
including: Clay Shirky, Jeff Jarvis, Luic Le Meur, Chris Anderson, Dave Hornik, Kevin Werbach, Ann Winbald, ...


it's a new day

artwork via keri smith
might just be the prettiest thing you'll ever see...

your choice..
my choice..


Tuesday, December 29, 2009

youtube creations

my 2nd youtube creation ever... a christmas present for my mom....

my 1st youtube creation... about school... 


i'm working on it....                                                    art by   keri smith



my sister

my sister's advice

i love my sister.


my sister's art.. and her purse...
my brain is feeling a bit like that just now.
and this isn't a new feeling... i'll never go hungry.. that's for sure.
i love learning.

insights from keith hamon's blog

Just introduced to Keith Hamon... I'm reading through his blog,... (I went back - not to his beginning post - but to 2007) these are my top findings so far:

1. student-centered

Nicholas Negropante at Ted: The Vision Behind One Laptop Per Child

Biggest take away.... we don't learn to walk and talk and eat by being taught those things... it's all about self-teaching. Plan was to have the laptops all over by 2010...

2. gaming as a great model
Games give immediate feedback - the assessment and the playing are all one movement.
Huge emphasis on production rather than just consumption.

If we create learning environments that aren't like traditional school - may draw more professionals into teaching.

3. 5 friends and the wisdom of crowds
5 friends - a crowd gets smarter the larger and more diverse it becomes.

4. Tools for aggregating wisdom
....thousands of Web 2.0 tools....available ..—most for free—to help us connect/collaborate/create.... most think of spreadsheets as a business or science tool..., but consider what these four people did with it:

Collaborative Spread Sheet Art 

5. Student as professional
Hamon talking to his students: 
Step 1 moving from friendship-driven networks to interest-driven networks is to learn the tools. This is an easy one, as most of you already know how to use many of the tools, and ... (for others you had heightened nerves, claiming)..I am not that great in computers, but after I created my Wiki on the class page I began to realize this is not all that hard, it is just something I am not familiar with."

Step 2 is more difficult. I'll say it bluntly: you must quit thinking of yourselves as just a studentI am learning through this class we can't be educated because we are the education. When everyone collaborates, shares ideas, and asks questions we all become more educated and the true learning takes place.
...existing organizations resisting the movement away from traditional, hierarchical, command-and-control ways of doing things (such as universities) and toward new-age, networked, connect-and-collaborate ways of doing things. ...they are often threatened by collaborative networks. They see them as threats to their authority and control. They see collaboration as cheating. ...They just can't quite structures where the network nodes (for instance, students and teachers in a university network) are both producers and consumers of learning.

left off at jan 07 intereset driven networks


on skype

We use Skype on a regular basis - as a whole class or the kids use their individual accounts.

We might skype in experts to discuss such things as:
1. how to build a good catapult  :)
2. best uses of twitter
3. what colleges are doing
4. what life in another country is like
5. help with math problems/projects
6. how we can help kids in need

Or for the kids to talk to their peers
1. within our school
2. outside of our school
3. in other states/countries

I use the chat personally daily to talk to colleagues from around the world and to talk to my students...

We've even used it to talk to others in the building...

We're hoping/planning to record a song with some of our CO musicians and musicians from Croatia and Uganda next semester... via the inspiration of Playing for Change.
                                                           take a listen...  Stand by Me

maybe more...? add Istanbul?..yay

 hey @lasic - this is what we're doing - love it...

on digging down

on reading karl fisch's decision to  blog for the huffington post...

i think one of our biggest energy zappers is senseless arguing - when a conversation is no longer about a mission, but an agenda. unfortunately, even just the word political takes me there.

i love that you're doing this karl. danah boyd's interview here - ended with these words: 

The questions I continue to want to ask are the things that are challenging to me: having to sit down and be forced to think about uncomfortable social stuff, it's really hard to get my head around it – which means it's exactly what I should dive in and deal with."

we all need to be doing more of that. digging down.

thank you karl fisch- for being among the brave leaders for ed. and of course dana boyd as well.


aw twitter...

how cool is this....

i'm tweeting about - get this tweet on math in the movies. love it so much i go to the guys site.

become enthralled in all he's logged there. and then i notice the top of his site is a scrolling shot of his office.
can't find a twitter name... so i tweet to the world how cool his office is.

response within the hour:
lionsima .@monk51295 OMG - his wife was a friend of mine 20 years ago - lost touch ... thx so much ... talk of serendipity!!!

and then i see this:

lionsima Incredible serendipity - someone on Twitter tweeted abt the husband of an old friend I had lost track of for over 15 years. Amazing. #fb

all from hadass eviatar from winnipeg

i love twitter....


and the beat goes on

 la de da de da...

c  o  n  t  i  n  u  e  d       c  o  n  v  e  r  s  a  t  i  o  n  s:

more on Clay Burell's blog: beyond school - learning tech w/o understanding it

parts of my first comment:
Great conversation. Thank you…
This is huge:
If you can take away the opportunity cost of floundering and instead *use* that floundering as the lesson, then this is no longer an obstacle but an advantage.
The second is more difficult. Getting teachers to understand that the *first* thing they need to learn about these tools – the ones we lump loosely into a box and label “technology” – is how to *learn* with them. Instead, my experience is that teachers only want to know how to *teach* with them.

The focus needs to be on the connections web access allows – to knowledge via people. People aren’t buying in because we’re missing the point. Learning how to learn.

Clay's response:
I’ve tried to respond to your comment a couple times, Monika, but couldn’t nail what I wanted to say. Still can’t, so I guess I’m still not ready.
But I’ll start with saying I’m still uncomfortable with the opportunity cost notion. As a history teacher — which to me means “preparation for informed citizenship” teacher — I’m not sure I want to sacrifice time that could be used learning and drawing conclusions from human history on the altar of failed web 2.0 experimentation.
I see the value of both, though. I’m thinking a separate course — a sort of “Intro to Web 2.0″ — might be more useful than teachers across the curriculum failing and flailing about with the tools when their primary job is teaching content.
And I’m still traditional in thinking content is more important. Without it, we risk churning out what I’ve recently been calling, in my internal monologues, “barbarians with laptops.”
Teachers and philosophers across the centuries have taught successfully without the new tools (to whatever degree we can certainly debate, and could also debate whether the percentage of students who learn well under traditional methods would learn any better via digital means).
And the new tools also enable “connections to knowledge via people” that can be unreliable, which opens a new can of worms.
But I’m still hazy. :)
Thanks for the comment.

my reply:
I totally agree - this: sacrificing time that could be used learning and drawing conclusions from human history on the altar of failed web 2.0 experimentation - has been to our demise. 

I'm thinking more along the lines of Erica McWilliams term, being "usefully ignorant." Learning what to do when we don't know what to do. 
Not - gosh I blundered the tech again - what can we learn from that?... 
But, dang, the questions you're asking are beyond my knowledge,... let's google it, or tweet about it, ..etc... to find out. And then obviously research the people, things, etc, we find for accuracy.

I think we have to break away..and do the Clay Christensen disrupting class thing. Kids teaching themselves in a sense, because their journey is their journey. They have created (or their teachers have created) their own network of experts to guide them to knowledge/information.

Currently, in my brain, learning how to use new tools isn't what ed needs. If the need for a tool is there, anyone can learn how to use it. So a separate class for it... hmmm.. I don't know. What we're missing is why we need the tools.

Some reasons I think are good: 
I don't want to process static content anymore... I want to follow my passion... I don't want my end project to end up in the recycle bin...  I want an authentic audience... I want what I do to matter.....

Voicethread is an example of a great tool.... because it lives on.. It can be tweaked anytime. But I've seen it used as static content... totally lost it's function. 

Gosh I was I was   s m a r t e r...

onto the twitter blog.... mr brock wants to know
my reply to  failed attempts
Hey - nice job on sustaining a conversation...

On your idea to get a twitter account for your school...great thinking... but for some ..may still be overwhelming. I remember tweets seeming like a foreign language for the longest time. Still do some days. 
I have a ning site - mostly kids - 30 of whom have twitter accounts. I did three yahoo pipes into the ning. One is of my tweets,... for those more into it. One is of their tweets, that way it's not too overwhelming - a small circle of interaction - not hugely rich, but at least they're learning the process. And the third pipes in a hashtag I created for them. Where I send the tweets I really want them to see.

Another suggestion...I try really hard to listen to the kids and to my peers... looking for something they are interested in or searching for...I tweet about it, and then share it with them...or start feeding them tweets about it. ie: our earth science teacher recently told me he wanted to start researching global warming... in truth... not per a political side. So, I tweeted about it and within minutes (this is after building up my twitter for 6 months) three friends sent valuable links/connections. He - a masculine man who wasn't interested in "twittering" finally saw a great function of it. He's now on twitter.

I love this.. "This allowed me to realize the utility and the cycle that begins once you start finding the blogs of a Twitterer you’re starting to follow or the tweets of a blogger you’ve begun reading.." 

la de da de da...              i miss sonny and cher


let's not keep processing static content

Because posts/comments allow for content to come alive, in particular, notice my previous post about Clay Burell's recent post, my brain's continual craving for morphisms is being happily fed..

and the beat goes on...

to Lindsay - thank you for your comment. The whole idea that the masses just keep changing up ... processing static content seems so invisible to others, maybe because it's so ingrained, esp in ed. And dang - what is the value of it now that we have created the means to do better....?

to Clay - this bit:
Now I believe the best we can do is simply attract. The sun isn’t getting muscle fatigue keeping the planets in orbit. It’s simply attracting them, effortlessly, because of its impressive mass. Teachers should be suns in this way, and students the planets worth keeping in orbit.
...reminds me of Seth Godin. He's taught me what remarkable means. Something has to have enough value that it's worth talking others. We're not pushing or pulling - we're that impressive, attractive sun.

I think devalue, unattractiveness, the need to remark on our own activity, doing things only for a grade... comes when we think we have to have the masses buy in. As much as I want everyone to get it.. to have all ears hear it (those who have ears let them hear)...I am continually saddened by the cheapening of this beautifully choreographed collaborative movement.

I love the ideas of podcasting as homework.. experts connecting with the few that do get it.

Maybe this is where I need more patience. It makes so much sense... to be attractive and remarkable, because I want the learning to be geniune... but when you get in school, waiting is hard. I want them (teachers and students) to get it now. I don't want them missing out on the beauty of it all. How long does/will it take to debunk? You'd think in it's true form, networking could debunk overnight.

I just want to make sure that those moments when ears do open up to the possibility that this really is different... they aren't barraged with talk of new tech tools.... that just glorify the processing of static content.


Monday, December 28, 2009

the science of motivation via dpink

Daniel Pink's Ted Talk on the surprising science of motivation.

Rewards (ie: money) work best on tasks that only called for mechanical skill.

For problems such as the candle problem, where you have to think - outside the box - (get the tacks outside the box) - extrinsic rewards don't work.

Once a task begs for even rudimentary cognitive skills, higher incentives led to worse performance.

New operating system (intrinsic):
autonomy: the urge to direct our own lives
mastery: the desire to get better and better at something that matters
purpose: the yearning to do what we do in the service of something larger than ourselves

on autonomy:
radical amounts of autonomy at google. 20% of some employees time is for innovation

There's a mismatch between what science knows and what business does:
1. Those 20th cent rewards work, but only in a surprisingly narrow band of circumstances.
2. Those if-then rewards often destroy creativity.
3. The secret to high performance isn't rewards and punishments but that unseen intrinsic drive, the drive to do things that matter.

If we get past this lazy, dangerous ideology of carrots and sticks...
.... maybe we can change the world. 

imagining there's more good stuff in here:


Sunday, December 27, 2009

what we keep calling NEW and what really is NEW

dear ed... let's not get confused with what we're calling new ... and what is really new...

1.  connections to people (networks)

Great post by Dave Cormier - esp read Keith Hamon's comment

Here's pieces from Hammon to Cormier: 
Perhaps one of the first literacies we need to develop, and one that I still don’t have, is to determine what constitutes a rhizomatic structure.
...I think I’m beginning to see this shift in structure in my college classrooms as people drop in and out of the class like virtual angels through blogs, work on gDocs, RSS feeds, chats, Facebook. When students really begin to develop a PLN/PLE, then the hierarchical identity of my classroom is subsumed in the assemblages of all those different networks. When the class works, then the rhizome intensifies, elaborates, far beyond the classroom. What do I call that? How does my university account for that? Who gets charged? graded? And do those various hierarchical functions become anachronisms? If they are, then what functions replace them? If I as a teacher no longer spend my time as the sole, authoritative gatekeeper of knowledge or as the rank-orderer and signifier, then what do I do?

What will happen to me as a teacher when I can no longer rely on command-and-control structures to force students into my classrooms and must, instead, rely on connect-and-collaborate structures?
Dave, I need these new literacies much sooner than do my students, who are already developing them, though they are seldom conscious of it. Let me know what you find out.

2.  connections to information (creative/innovative/unboxed)
Sir Ken Robinson speaks after his 2006 Ted on creativity:
In a nutshell, ....we're all born with immense natural talents but our institutions, especially ed, tend to stifle many of them 
...involves a combo of factors:
  • narrow emphasis on ...arts, humanities pe
  • arid approaches to teaching math & science 
  • obsessive culture of stand testing and tight financial pressures to teach to the tests. sense scale of disaster take note of:
  • alarming rates of turnover among faculty 
  • levels of drop out, disaffection, stress & prescription drug use among students that keep students' minds from wandering to things they naturally find more interesting.
  • plummeting value of college degrees
dominant systems of ed are rooted in the values and demands of industrialism: 
they are linear, mechanistic and focused on conformity and standardization. 

Education is about developing human beings, and human development is not mechanical or linear. 
The answer is not to standardize education, but to personalize and customize it to the needs of each child and community. There is no alternative. There never was. 

The ability to do this:  to personalize and customize to each child is new ..thanks to the potential of networking on the web..

Figuring out how to use - and using - new tech is not what's new. 
It's different. 
It's cool enough that you'd think people would want to learn it - use it.
But the people lobbying against all the "new" tech are right. Using a new tool is not vital to learning. Learning to put my powerpoint on spalshr may intrigue more onlookers - but that's motivation... more than actual learning. 

Connecting to information and people in ways we have never had the means to before... that is new.
Now we can individualize for each kid. We can tailor a curriculum per kid, suited to their passion, to their creativity. And.... and.... we can now find and connect each kid to an expert individual tutor - so that they are surrounded with immediate, authentic, passionate feedback/encouragement/expertise.

This is most incredible news - and we're missing it - because we are flapping too much about tech literacy/tools.

Or - please help me with my thinking here.
It seems too simple.

And since we're not getting it, (not only not getting it, but mungling it all up), the kids aren't getting it... dang .... 

More great insight from Clay Burell.


Saturday, December 26, 2009

open source via tech infused

One tweet.... that's all it takes...
this one took me all over the place - 


While I'm always morphing/learning... I came to a much clearer picture of what the heck we need to be doing these days.

After reading the student article - your heart can't help but go with the student... Steven Anderson writes:
Is this more proof we need to a) Slow down when it comes to tech in schools and b) always, always, have the student perspective?

Absolutely listen more... but dang... slower?....

Yes - slower in the sense of senseless tech purchase... but we are so far behind in understanding the potential of the connections open sourcing and web use allows us. I'm afraid that our hang up about understanding/not understanding tech is what keeps getting in our way.

Here's the kicker for me - in the incredible comments conversation between the author of the post (discussing the student post), Clay Burrell and Nathan Lowell, Lowell writes:

Does the challenge become one of changing the politics so that learning is more important than coverage? If you can take away the opportunity cost of floundering and instead *use* that floundering as the lesson, then this is no longer an obstacle but an advantage.

Flashback to Eria Mcwilliam insight on the greatest trait of a teachers these days, to be usefully ignorant, know what to do when you don't know what to do.

Content is no longer the lesson...connections are. 
Connections to information via your connections with people.

it's "with" whom we learn rather than "from" whom we learn. Will Richardson

And so it's not technology integration, not even tech-infusion - although that does sound more romantic....

It's being open sourced to the world... it's global connections... to information - and even more importantly - to people...

The school that is unleashed, is fumbling and messy, and alive, because it's learning how to learn.

and now... because Clay Burell's post is alive... the beat goes on.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

what matters now

what a great gift... things to think about and do this year via Seth Godin's new ebook.
Read Seth's post explaining it here... (free download there as well.) link here.


Wednesday, December 23, 2009

c o n n e c t

our friends in croatia won this....    for this....

which got us in colorado to do this...

just as we finished - we received this...

we are so lucky in ed today...
connect a jingle this year...

evelyn glennie shows how to listen

amazing lady.. amazing ted talk....

so much to learn...if we just listen.


networking a disruption

Last day of school before holiday... and here it is 1:38 am having a darn good conversation on twitter about disrupting class.

Wanted to capture the conversation... so went to bettween - anxious to use this new found app. it's down just now. dang.

So go to jing - and record one frame of tweets at a time. not smooth. But hopefully the convo is captured...

clarifying to me:
  • 100ish kids to a teacher - at their own school building
  • face to face time is variable, but roughly 2 hours a day
  • teacher facilitates connections rather than supplies content
  • teachers volunteer (from anywhere) to be an expert for one group within the (globally) pooled 100's groups. these groups within the 100's groups are designed by student passion.
  • underlying assumption - every kid is g/t.
  • following their dream/passion/gift/talent rather than tracking their holes = more efficient and much more enjoyable.

premise: how to do what you love


Saturday, December 19, 2009

open online education

via Alec Couros  dec 11   (classroom 2.0)

(just blurbs here for now - until i get a chance to sift back through - sorry for the messiness)

University content shared freely out of a creative commons license.

Learning is free, only thing you pay for is the assessment for credit.
Non-credits add value,,, because everyone contributes.

Dave Wiley's penn straight address:   (he coined the term open content)
(find links at links)

What it takes to become an instructor of a course that's an open course..

one photo a day  - 365

Putting yourself out there (via personal stuff) helps you become an open educator - present semi public selves

Alec's video tour
1. twitter in 60 sec by jim gates,  

Network proximity: facilitates new boundaries
use your twitter pics, etc, to show your pln....

2. now network via sprint

internet:  not searching anymore - connecting

check out itunesu

Jonathan Zittrain  - randomly kind to each other - Ted Talk

Michael Wesch  - the machine is changing us,.... free hugs, and hand writing videos

reddit - photoshop story

these are the things you should be focusing on in open ed..... a lot of genuine caring

open courses:
1. have to understand that knowledge is changing
2. have to be involved yourself - need to be a part of pln before you become an open educator
Alec's grad course movie trailer

his course - Alec    - go to weekly sync sessions to see some live
use mapalist - cool to show where all were from...
here's a Google Spreadsheet gadget for that now

And if want to continue learning beyond - take content and aggregate through reader (google reader)

flat stanley?


next course - fall 2010

Teacher as connector rather than content provider.
Actually more powerful..... offers much more to students.

No longer a skill set - but a mindset.

Something being free actually adds more value.
There's a value in being free - Alec actually brings more students into the university through his free courses.

This is the attention economy: Michael Goldharber

What is the value of being face to face...

my aha from today - i need more time working on my student connections, then on grading, etc....  use etc more - so i have time to get tv (my school) alumni tapped into ning, etc...
again: more focus on teacher as facilitator of connections rather than supplier of content

Check into Tammy @armoorefam - she's had success with alumni taping back into her ning.


Friday, December 18, 2009


how cool is this....

i'm tweeting about.... and i get this tweet on math in the movies. love it so much i go to the guys site. oliver knill  (dang - can't even go grab his link without wanting to stay there and peruse...)

i become enthralled in all he's logged there. and then i notice the top of his site is a scrolling shot of his office.
can't find a twitter name... so i tweet to the world how cool his office is.

@monk51295 oliver knill - very cool office scrolling about on top of your site...  & grazie for math in movies

response within the hour:
@lionsima .@monk51295 OMG - his wife was a friend of mine 20 years ago - lost touch ... thx so much ... talk of serendipity!!!

and then i see this:

@lionsima Incredible serendipity - someone on Twitter tweeted abt the husband of an old friend I had lost track of for over 15 years. Amazing. #fb

all from hadass eviatar from winnipeg, and i am in co and he is in ma.

i love t w i t t e r ....

analytics via



to do something well you have to like it

just read an incredible post: how to do what you love. by paul graham.

i'd say - just go read it. period. it's that good.

but if you have no time (it is lengthy) pieces that grabbed me the most....

The world then was divided into two groups, grownups and kids. Grownups, like some kind of cursed race, had to work. Kids didn't, but they did have to go to school, which was a dilute version of work meant to prepare us for the real thing. Much as we disliked school, the grownups all agreed that grownup work was worse, and that we had it easy.

Once, when I was about 9 or 10, my father told me I could be whatever I wanted when I grew up, so long as I enjoyed it. I remember that precisely because it seemed so anomalous. It was like being told to use dry water. Whatever I thought he meant, I didn't think he meant work could literally be fun—fun like playing. It took me years to grasp that.

More often people who do great things have careers with the trajectory of a ping-pong ball. They go to school to study A, drop out and get a job doing B, and then become famous for C after taking it up on the side.

and a note about the section discussing love of math vs love of novel writing... completely in sync with his comments of loving math - no matter if you have a job, but i'm thinking that a writer would feel the same about writing novels. 
wondering if he's a math guy.... 

"Always produce" will discover your life's work the way water, with the aid of gravity, finds the hole in your roof.

you have to make a conscious effort to keep your ideas about what you want from being contaminated by what seems possible.

Worse still, anything you work on changes you. If you work too long on tedious stuff, it will rot your brain. And the best paying jobs are most dangerous, because they require your full attention.

Don't decide too soon. Kids who know early what they want to do seem impressive, as if they got the answer to some math question before the other kids. They have an answer, certainly, but odds are it's wrong....(Do you really want your career determined by a highschool kid.)

Much as everyone thinks they want financial security, the happiest people are not those who have it, but those who like what they do.     


Saturday, December 12, 2009

operation RAD

Reform and Development (RAD): TV Stuco's new mission to make the school building a better place to be...seeing as how we spend umpteen hours a week there.

For starters, we are planning on:

1. inspirational posters some RAD *emotionally intelligent signage.
On emotionally intelligent signage - mostly via Daniel Pink's site:

look here for a short film on the idea.
Here are just a few of his examples/ideas:
Take a look on his site for more ideas....or just look around.

Also might add Seth Godin's suggestion to tie a person with every rule..

Hopefully we'll incorporate some of Volkswagen's ideas as well.

2. causes (uganda beads, fast, homeless, help others)
3. hall ceilings - windows
some RAD color,
4. courtyard/outside - garden
5. ? school site?... poll, etc  


    Friday, December 11, 2009

    danah boyd - challenging me to get uncomfortable and actively listen

    I just read danah boyd's crib of her talk at Supernova and Le Web Titled: "Do you See What I See?: Visibility of Practices through Social Media"

    The entire read is incredibly insightful. danah is and has been unearthing extremely significant info for everyone, and especially for educators. I have not read anything of hers that didn't teach me some major insight that I was either missing or needed to drastically re-emphasize.

    To me - this is the makings of a Nobel Peace Prize.  
    please don't go places with that comment, i'm simply saying she is doing extremely spot-on work/research - desparately needed in the heartbeat of our nation, of the entire world.

    This particular talk focuses on the implications of visibility. It is reading that - quite honestly - if you have a beating heart, you will be unable to put down. Two parts that especially struck a chord with me:

    on a dad joining his daughter's myspace:
    Rather than misinterpreting what was visible, he made a decision to understand the context. He did not force her to take it down, but rather, used it as an opportunity to open a conversation that he's very glad he had with her. Choosing to look is one thing; having the confidence to know that one's interpretation may not be accurate is another. The key is asking, talking, opening up conversations.


    on a girl's public accounts of abuse and outcry for help:
    It was heartbreaking. For months, she had been documenting her mother's alcoholic rages through her public blog postings on MySpace. Detailed accounts of how her mother physically abused her, yelled at her, and psychologically tormented her. Her own decision to start abusing alcohol, her own confusion about what to do. Her friends had left comments, offering emotional support. But they were in above their heads and there was no adult present in any of those comments.
    ... No one was willing to listen. ... it was clear to me that she had no adult in her community to whom she could turn.
    Just because we have the ability to see does not mean that we're actually looking. And often, as in this case, we aren't looking when people need us the most.

    In her recent interview via Bobbie Johnson, I think she pens what gives her this unique insight: The questions I continue to want to ask are the things that are challenging to me: having to sit down and be forced to think about uncomfortable social stuff, it's really hard to get my head around it – which means it's exactly what I should dive in and deal with."

    As educators, are we willing to take this lead?
    Are we willing to be challenged? ... to be uncomfortable?
    Come on now ... for the sake of authentic learning.. for peace ... world peace... and more importantly - individual soul peace...

    Take note of wise people - they keep telling us just one thing - to listen. 
    No prejudice, no interpretation, no ignoring/blocking, no surmising, ...

    Seems really quite simple.... just uncomfortable.

    Let's budge.


    Thursday, December 10, 2009

    my tweet cloud

    wondering what to make of this....

    the words i've used most in tweets over the last 6 months.

    gus introduced me to tweet cloud. here's his.

    pass it on

    From the encouragement of Shelly Terrell's tag you're it post and tweet...

    Bill Short was my high school calc teacher. His passion for math enveloped our classroom. Once there, the only thing that existed was the chalkboard. His gift - an incredible doorway to the beauty of math. Huge grazie dear dear Mr Short.

    In between highschool and now (30+ years) and even before that, the list is loooooooong - of people/teachers/coaches who inspired/taught me about life and math and swimming and....

    I think in the last 2-3 years, a major population that has influenced me the most has been my students. Not because they have gotten wiser, but because I have just begun to really listen to them...
    I mostly blame Seth Godin for that. My connection with him (and his Triiibesters) has completely changed my view on student/teacher relationships, relationships with people in general. Before I started reading Seth's books and his daily blog, I had great relationships with my students, and they would generally perform well for me because of that relationship. Seth, however, has taught me to see my students as customers, even though writing it still makes me cringe. The difference? As a customer, I'm not just working on a relationship with a student, I'm listening to them, finding out how they view things, studying their habits, figuring out how they learn best. That has been huge for me. I'm on a mission now. Grazie Mr. Godin. No measureable thank you is enough. And the beat goes on

    Another person that influences/inspires me to get uncomfortable and actively listen to kids is danah boyd. Not only is she teaching me what kids are saying with her unequaled research - her method of learning is what i aspire to. Whenever I hear danah speak or I read something she's written, I'm captivated the entire time, because I know every ounce of her words come from authentic experiences. Grazie danah boyd - for being brave enough to teach us stuff that matters.

    Today, a lot of people that know of me say that I am passionate about tech. The ones who know me ask, how can that be, as they help me turn on the computer so that I can present to a crowd about rich web use. The passion isn't the tech. The passion is learning how to learn. I can credit a lot of that passion to Steven Devijver, who I met through Triiibes. Steven gave me an incredible 5 month course on that very topic. He was my very first individual expert tutor. That was an experience that I will never be able to quantify. It is why I'm so passionate about connecting kids to their own expert individual tutor - to owning their own learning.

    And back to the kids. Funny, two days before Shelly's tag challenge, I started an ongoing post where I plan to keep adding a blurb about all the kool bean kids I've been graced with. Grazie-zimos - all of you darlings. You keep me inline. You keep me informed. You teach me daily. You feed my passion. some of these kids have created me-videos, click on their name for a kool bean treat.

    I love this game of tag Shelly. Thank you for always rebooting us...encouraging us to pass it on.

    I'm tagging: Alec Couros, Anne McCrossan, Nik Peachy, Saul Kaplan, Joy Shaw, danah boyd, and Seth Godin. I'm ever so curious what got/gets them going.

    artwork above via my sister at prettylikedeer