Tag Archives: OTRK12

Igniting the Spark at OTRK12

The  On the Rise K12  conference kicked off with a wonderful keynote by  Stephen Hurley.   Several things Stephen talked about resonated with me from a life perspective.

Your life is a journey,  and it is important to share  YOUR  story.  We all have a story to tell,  and we learn from each other.  Period.   So lets unpack this a bit.

Part of your journey is to discover your passion.  In the end, it is your passions that will drive you forward to learn something new,  ask a new question,  explore a new piece of information,  dialog with a new contact … etc.   Each new ‘node’ on the journey is the impetus for moving to the next.  “Passions NEVER die“. 

I loved hearing Stephen telling his own story about his passion for radio – the discovery, the learnings, the explorations, the successes and how technology was an enabler for him to move forward and pursue his passions further.

I enjoyed Stephen’s exploration and emphasis on the “metaphors we live by”.  Well done.  As educators considering the 3 key engagement elements of social, institutional and intellectual, I encourage you to consider these points:

    • how do we best ignite the curiosity spark to help students find their passion?


    • within our educational context,  what actions do we take to keep student passions alive?


    • how can we be flexible enough to create the path forward for  students to pursue their passion without being in their way?


Many thanks Stephen for prompting more thinking on K12 education. I hope this blog post captures another piece of the educational journey.

Share your comments here, or perhaps in a blog post of your own (include a link please!).

Related Resources
Follow the conference twitter chat:  #OTRK12


OTRK12: Ready to learn and share

The  On the Rise K12  conference is set to go for April 1/2 in Mississauga. There is an awesome lineup of workshops.  Check out the  Tuesday list  and the  Wednesday list.

Donna Fry  and I will be there presenting about the  OSSEMOOC project  and also sharing the learning by live streaming some of the sessions.  Video streams will be available  [here]  and/or   [here]   (you will need to sign up for a free account to watch).  Some audio streams will be available at  QueST Radio 1-14.

Watch the  #otrk12  twitter stream for ‘on the fly’ details of which sessions will be streamed.

Enjoy the learning.  Consider sharing your reflections by submitting an article to the  OSSEMOOC 30 days of learning  project.



OTRK12 Reflections

The month’s On the Rise K12 conference was very worthwhile.  I was impressed with the level of learning, sharing and reflecting. Some of my highlights included:

There was a notable energy during the event which continued right through to the last session.  I attended an identifying barriers and moving forward session. It was quite interesting to listen to the various challenges raised:

    • great admin support, but teachers are resisting change
    • wonderful grass roots energy to change, need more admin support
    • interest and participation in blended learning is growing but bandwidth capacity is an issue
    • need more wifi coverage

All in all, it was a great passionate discussion  by caring educators.  Upon reflection, the things that really resonated with me were:

    • it is critical to continue investment into bandwidth (internal and internet) and stay ahead of the need
    • I believe leveraging access by including BYOD as part of the mix is important
    • the grass roots up/top down needs to become a planned path with expectations and annual goals
    • continue to focus solving problems and sharing solutions

There are 2 more critical pieces to the puzzle in my mind. There are a wealth of teachers who already use many web 2.0 and social media tools as part of their instructional practice in curriculum delivery. I seems to me, a plan is needed to bring this body of ‘casual’ blended learning into the D2L portal used by the Ministry of Education. Part of this plan would address the need for an easy path to connect existing resources used in the casual approach into D2L – a transition, not a do over for teachers.  Secondly, the D2L environment needs to be “lego like”  — easy to snap outside resources into the portal and minimizing the need for custom interfaces or complicated conversions.

Related Resources 

Conference Twitter chat stream
Presentation: The Traditional Classroom by Diana Hughes
Reflections from Donna Fry
Colleen Rose’s Reflection
OTRK12 Part 1 by Ferdinand Krauss
OTRK12 Part 2 by Ferdinand Krauss
Reflections from Brandon Grasley
Conference Site

I look forward to attending next year’s event.