Showing posts from October, 2011

Equity or Equality?

There are clear examples of inequality in our midst.  This morning I was reading some articles about poverty levels, lack of access to clean water, millions of Americans and others pushed in recent years from the middle to the poor class (2008 meltdown), and the 10’s of thousands of Japanese impacted by the March 2011 earthquake and tsunami.  I wrote about greed and the economy a few months ago and the news and the blogosphere are rife with articles about unequal distribution of wealth, food, property, education, disasters, and opportunities.  History is replete with stories of people living with inequality.  In my assessment I would say the gaps are increasing not getting smaller.  Public education has definitely been a reasonably successful equity builder over the years.  But I would not call education an equalizer.  Nothing in our world is that. I was having a tweet-convo yesterday with a colleague about the inequity that schools and communities face in British Columbia.  He expr

Open Letter to Prezi

Back in September I wrote Presentation Dilemma – Powerpoint or Prezi where I wrestled with the art of presentation and the challenge I gave myself to use for one of my next presentations.  After much blood, sweat, and tears (okay, I’m being a little over dramatic…), I did it.  I had a blast delivering “ The Social Networking Experience ” on Oct. 21, 2011 at the Computer Using Educators of British Columbia ( #CueBC ) annual conference. CueBC Social Networking Experience on Prezi I had created a version of this presentation using PowerPoint earlier this year and used it at the BC ASBO annual meeting in May.  Unfortunately SlideShare ( where you can access that version ) doesn’t do justice to the dynamic aspects of PowerPoint but you can get the sense of that version compared to the Prezi version. Using Prezi to present is actually a pretty interesting experience.  The essential nature of Prezi is that presentations zoom in and out, and pan based on a def

Be Courageous

I was recently invited to go see the movie Courageous .  A key theme for this movie is how important it is that fathers step up and seriously commit to their role in supporting and leading their families.  The film is Christian based but even if you have a different belief system, the values and the challenge expressed in the movie are pretty powerful for dads.  This article advocates for fathers deep involvement but ultimately both parents are critical to support and train up their kids regardless of marital status.  When times are difficult, solid family life becomes even more important for all members of the family.  I think you would agree that we are in increasingly difficult times… The key themes I read, think, and write most about within this blog are education, technology, and the future.  I also read a lot of material dealing with economy, history, and government as I think these significantly influence the outcome for education, technology, and our future.  I am reading a

Be a Fearless Learner

Think back to when you were young.  Go as far back in your memory as you can.  Okay, do you remember being fearful?  When faced with obstacles or new situations, did you avoid or embrace them?  I think most if not all of us remember those early years as ones filled with possibility not impossibility.  We seem to be created with an inherent courage.  I can remember learning to ride a skateboard (we’re talking a board with metal wheels back in the 70’s), it was ridiculous trying to ride that early prototype but my friends and I did it.  Later when we could afford newer skateboards, we would take turns lining up kids and ourselves on the grass and see how many we could jump over.  Anyone see a risk here?  When we’re young we don’t think about risks, rather we only see what can be.  Something happens along the way though – we start to learn to fear things. Now think back to your days as a student in K-12.  Do you remember what kindergarten was like?  My memories were of play, painting, s

Make Learning Visible

Our District has formed a Documentation Focus Group to “ Make Learning Visible ”.  I wrote last year about the early exploration of this approach to documenting learning in Capturing the Journey of Early Learners .  This year we have about 18 committed kindergarten teachers working with an external facilitator Pat Holborn, who specializes in Learning Through Play and Making Early Learning Visible in Early Primary .  They are embarking on an ambitious journey, going where most teachers have not gone before…  The stated purposes for this project include: build and share strategies and skills for documenting, assessing and sharing student learning over time. involve children and families in the documentation process. begin to develop a framework for documenting student learning, supported by examples in different subject areas that can be shared with others. explore ways to use technologies, including photographs, video and the Internet ( my43 ) to share documentation wi