As summer winds down and the sunset times are getting notably earlier, the start of a fresh school year is almost upon us. Generally, I sense a focus on anticipation for what will unfold, but within this notion, I find myself zeroing in on what will be different, what opportunities will come into play and how to bring change into effect.
I look forward to my continued work with Donna Fry on the OSSEMOOC project where we focus efforts on connected leadership and the importance of Now and NEXT. I have set a personal and group ‘NEXT’ for 2015/16 and thought I would share them in different formats to illustrate that there are many approaches to creating your online voice.
One of my favourite conversations this year happened when I took the time to sit down with George Couros and Donna Fry to revisit a conversation from a year ago, where we debated why educators look to one well known lead or theory to follow rather than leveraging the room – the educators who are learning, changing, innovating and sharing publicly. After all, the smartest person in the room, is the room!
Digging deeper into the conversation this year we talked about another angle that I believe is important in this discussion. Perhaps the most important element is not if fact “the one” vs “the room”, but each of us recognizing which one of these causes the personal disruption needed to learn, change, grow and share. After all, we each have a responsibility for owning our professional learning journey. Perhaps a good term for this would be “differentiated disruption“.
Where do you stand: the one, or the room? What does it take to shake up or clarify your practice?
As a relatively new GoPro user, taking advantage of the opportunities at CATC Campseemed like the perfect opportunity to experiment and learn.
After some trial and error over the afternoon actually wearing the device to take some time lapse photo sequences, I decided to experiment with capturing the magnificent sunset view at Kempenfelt Centre.
After capturing the sunset with photos every 5 seconds over a 20 minute period of time, I imported the photo sequence into iMovie to render the sequence into a movie. Next, I re-imported the movie and added a “speed up” effect at a factor of x20 to produce this silent “one minute sunset” video.
Great learning for me. I wonder what I will do with the GoPro today?
David Truss writes on his blog “Pair-of-Dimes”: “It seems odd to speak of lone wolves to you, a person that is so intricately… connected. And yet, as you read on, you will relate to the loneliness that I describe, that I too have shared. Sometimes it is surprisingly …” [ read more here ]
This summer I had the opportunity to watch the movie Patch Adams (1998) again. It has been years since I originally watch the movie. I remembered the general story line, but this time I was stuck by the parallels between Patch’s journey and courageous journey that many educators are currently undertaking as David describes in his blog post.
Themes that resonated with me include having the courage to experiment, innovate, being brave enough to step out of your comfort zone, and a focus on making connections – the human connection to build relationships and influence perspectives.
Without risking spoiling the plot in case you have not viewed the movie, the closing 15 minutes contains such a powerful message about following your passion(s), making a difference and being willing to challenge the status quo in positive ways. I wonder if these phases will capture your interest: the power of transference, win/lose vs win/win, share your compassion, the passion to serve others, and carry the flame like a brush fire. This movie is well worth the watch (or re-watch) in my opinion. Perhaps viewing this movie will influence your next!
In my reading last week, I came across an article from the Disney Institute titled “Leadership Lessons From Walt Disney: Perfecting The Customer Experience“. As a connected learner and leader, I am always interested in ideas for improving improving service. The interesting part is taking time to consider how new ideas can be applied to another setting – K12 education in this case.
Consider these two quotes from the article:
“At Disney Institute, we were recently reflecting on the phrase, “simple is the new smart,” and it reminded us of a leadership philosophy we share with our clients and training program attendees – keep it simple so that everyone understands.”
“Walt Disney was a master at this. One of the simplest, yet most powerful and timeless leadership lessons we have learned from Walt is: “You don’t build it for yourself. You know what the people want and you build it for them.”
Photo by Stephanie Schmidt (my daughter)
If you consider education through the perspectives of “simple” and “build it for them” (the students), what would be different in education? My initial thoughts include:
increase in play based learning
more creating and making
increase in choice
more self directed
multiple paths to experience learning, and a
focus on making technology (and I mean the whole area – hardware, software, access, digital resources) easier to use
What would you add to the “K12 by Disney” list? Please share your insights to this idea by leaving a comment or connecting on Twitter.