Sunday, June 30, 2013

Courage is being scared to death and saddling up anyway

     As I watch the X Games Munich with Cub2. I am awed by the bravery these guys display. I used to believe that these guys were fearless. So wrong! Most are clearly, visibly fearful of the big jump/mega ramp/big air.  They pray, they take deep breaths, and they drop over the edge in spite of their fears. John Wayne, famous American movie star, said "Courage is being scared to death... and saddling up anyway."  
     Educators need to lead their students in taking deep breaths and big leaps.  Annie Dililard, American author wrote, " You’ve got to jump off cliffs all the time and build your wings on the way down. " As educators, we  need to just take the plunge and deal with the fallout later. We can accept that we look silly, or that we might fail, but we must take the plunge each and every day. While I appreciate the encouragement and instruction by  @DaveBurgess, author of Teach Like a Pirate.  I believe that Bob Burnquist, X Games Munich 2o13 Big Air Gold Medal winner, shows kids that they can take the plunge and take enormous risks  not only surviving, but thriving.
     If a student is able to show mastery of a standard we should allow them the priviledge of dropping over the edge of a new standard. We should not force them or school them into completing the same assignments that the rest of the class must complete to learn mastery. Rather than simply offering genius hour once a week, let's truly differentiate and encourage all the kids to take the plunge in learning.

Silly moment can encourage a creative moment

This morning I read Dean Shareski's blog regarding his IGNITE presentation at ISTE13
The Stupidest Creative Act | Ideas and Thoughts "Adults need to have fun so kids will want to grow up"~ Bauermeister. I love the way +Dean Shareski connects silly moments with incredible creative acts. It is a play on the idea that we must fail in order to suceed. But, silly moments are so much easier to understand. Despite fail meaning First Attempt in Learning, most adults have difficulty coming to grips with failure.

+Dean Shareski  's idea really resonates with me. I enjoy playing with new Web2.0 tools. I want to model for our staff the joy that students find in using technology. This year I created many staff oriented silly moments thinking that they would become inspired and begin to implement more technology for and with their students.
Teacher Appreciation Week
Students Thank their teachers (Testing 2013)

This summer I heard about a staff member (negative Nannette-fake name) who said that I must have way too much time on my hands to create these stupid technology pieces. This deeply hurt my feelings. I work into the wee hours creating this moments. It really only takes one negative comment to make me take a step backwards (at least for a moment). Then I remembered how much joy I have in using technology. So, I went back to an old friend-@Animoto and created a new moment for summer PD. Because my silly creations just might inspire a teacher to try one of these tools.

Thanks Dean Shareski for the reminder that silly is only one moment in time, but it might lead to any incredible creative moment!

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Plutarch: The mind is not a vessel to be filled but a fire to be ignited.

     Summer is a wonderful time to refill our passion for education. Twitter  and Google+ enable me to connect with educators from around the world. I've been on Twitter for many years, and am an Original Google+ beta user.  I have to admit that I love to share resources that are graciously shared by these connections with our staff.  
     In my new position, I will be in a position to share more freely, Cluster Director of Curriculum and Instruction.
I have an edublog so that our whole staff and parents will be able to easily find the web based resources they need based on the subject they are interested in.  Our curriculum frames will be available for all to view. They are a work in progress this summer.
     I want to say thank you to my family and community for supporting and encouraging me through the years.