Some national imperatives

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mceetyadoccover.jpg  Mark posted a link to this document in a post on his blog.

It contains some great material and really captures a sense of ‘gradual urgency’ in accepting our responsibilities as leaders.

I’ve incorporated some text grabs from the document in some presentation slides here.  (Now, I thought, some day soon, I’m going to find out how to do this using a web 2.0 thingy that I’ve seen on other blogs. So, a short while later, and here is a link to a shared presentation using a free site called SlideShare.  Interesting possibilities for people with lots of ppt etc)

Web 2.0 Tools

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Here’s a great post by David Jakes which includes links to some of the Web 2.0 sites which can show you more about just what can be done. 

The new tools and processes of Web 2.0, such as blogs, social bookmarking sites, podcasting and RSS, enable individual, continual, and highly customized experiences through the creation of a personal learning environment. The PLE is responsible for connecting individuals to form a community of learners, where all contribute and collaborate in what amounts to a global discussion of ideas. This discussion can and does have profound application to personal professional learning, and is driven by all those who participate. As Will Richardson, “learner in chief” at Connective Learning, says, “We are at times teachers and at times learners. Our roles shift with each interaction.”

And, in this report from the same site there are some great statistics about key trends.

Welcome to Term 3 !

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Let’s hope that everybody had a great vacation.  I managed to get along to the NSW Computer Education Group conference in Newcastle and to also be involved in some workshop sessions in Sydney lookin at the use of ICT in Leadership.

There were lots of good ideas and some especially useful tools and resources from Intel.  You can get an idea of what is on offer by clicking here.  Look for the links to ‘Tools and Resources.’

Here’s  a few interesting links to good ideas and resources to kick off the term.

Alex Miller’s blog - Alex works with TAFE on the North Coast of NSW and has some great links and ideas on this blog site.

Librarian Chick – lots and lots of great links to a range of Web 1.0 and Web 2.0 sites and goodies.  This is an example of one way of using a wiki site.

Relevance in learning

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I was reminded recently of this piece which was given to me by my Principal when I first started teaching.  The act of giving this to me as something which spoke of worthwhile things let me know that I was lucky to be working with someone who saw that we had a task in front of us to ensure that learning is relevant.  Despite being written over half a century ago, the general idea is as fresh today as then.  We need to build the connections from what is already known, and value some of the understandings and abilities which our learners bring with them.  I hope that you enjoy reading it as much as I did all of those years ago!

The poor scholar’s soliloquy

by Stephan M. Cory, University of Chicago
January 1944 from “Childhood Education”

No, I’m not very good in school. This is my second year in the seventh grade, and I’m bigger and taller than the other kids. They like me all right, though, even if I don’t say much in the classroom, because outside I can tell them how to do a lot of things. They tag me around and that sort of makes up for what goes on in school.

I don’t know why the teachers don’t like me. They never have very much. Seems like they don’t think you know anything unless you can name the books it comes out of. I’ve got a lot of books in my room at home-books like Popular Science Mechanical Encyclopedia, and the Sears & Wards catalogues–but I don’t sit down and read them like they make us do in school. Read the rest of this entry »

New resources and realities

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The animated image below is an example of an embedded image available from a site run by one of the members of an email list I subscribe to. The idea is that teachers could use this code when responding to student work online, and it is a great example of some positive thinking and affirmation.

The sharing of it is also wonderfully positive evidence of the willingness for collaboration within an online community which has, as the lifeblood of its collective humanity: the internet and connectivity. Did you know: that by the time children born this year are in their early years of school, computers will have outstripped the processing power of the human brain?

This is one of the many remarkable bits from the ‘Did you Know’ or ‘Shift Happens’ video on the last post in this blog. There is now a growing community of bloggers within educational leadership and this blog is now getting hits from the US and other countries across the world.

Here, within Australia, we need to continue to build our collaborative networks and continue to look outward at what the world is doing, while reflecting all the while on which of those things we value are likely to survive the journey into the future. There will no doubt be many. There will also be the chance to assess whether our pre-disposition, within education, to always ‘hang on’ to what we have, while adding more, is killing us.

Maybe it is time to let go and jettison some elements of content and practice which have been overtaken by new realities.

The challenge is to shift the common paradigm of what we mean by a school. Interestingly enough, there are several countries around the world who are taking clear steps in constructing fresh paradigms, while retaining some core elements. The rebuilding schools project in the UK, the rise of a range of alternative and online ‘school’ provisions online across the US, are but a couple of examples of a rapid convergence of vision and possibility: meeting needs.

When we shift our thinking to an acceptance of the ‘internet paradigm’, with its fundamental dichotomies between clear and common protocols and a virtual ‘anarchic’ domain for ideas and possibilities, then we start to see possibilities which go far beyond where we have been. Our task must be to create environments where we encourage and reward curiosity and facilitate the gaining of answers, and the design of solutions. We provide a connection between where we are and where those in the future may be. We must be willing to stand in awe and celebration, however, when those who traverse our bridge escape in a twinkle toward a vast horizon of possibility.

OK..and now we get to the end of the post and the embedded html code hasn’t worked to give us the animated image I imagined.  Well, that’s how it goes.  It doesn’t alter the reality that it can work, and will.


Add to Netvibes

Updated ‘Did you Know’

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The updated version of the ‘Shift Happens’ video: ‘Did you know’ was only posted recently.

The official announcement is on Scott McLeod’s blog post.

They have also set up a wiki at

If you haven’t seen this video, it is well worth a look.  You won’t be able to use the YouTube link at school however.

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