Category Archives: Collaboration

Triangulating Assessment in Online Environments

Here are the slides for the session:

Resources (generated by other groups working on this topic):

Triangulation of assessment

Your Connected LIfe: http://mediasmarts.ca/sites/mediasmarts/files/tip-sheet/your_connected_life_guide.pdf

Kathy Pick: Creativity online: https://t.co/2uVSZz9Wfh

You can learn anything:

How Youth Learn: Ned’s Gr8 8

What is learning? Katz video
http://www.curriculum.org/k-12/en/videos/what-is-learning

What is your focus?

Learning is Messy:

Digital Storytelling:
http://50ways.wikispaces.com/Tools+By+Media

Jump in!

Documenting for Learning:

Documenting FOR Learning

Making Learning Visible:
https://sesamehq.com/features

Screencasting for math solutions!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reggio_Emilia_approach

Allowing our students to capture their learning in new ways challenges us to see them differently as learners. When students own their learning and showcase it for us, how can we ensure we are using this evidence to inform future instruction? What tools do we have to enable our students to make their learning visible? In this workshop we will Explore some current uses of digital tools to document learning and support reflective teaching practice.

http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/eng/literacynumeracy/inspire/research/CBS_Pedagogical.pdf

http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/childcare/Wien.pdf

http://sandraherbst.blogspot.com/2013/10/push-backs-and-what-abouts.html

Kathy Cassidy’s class
http://mscassidysclass.edublogs.org/

Kahoot
https://getkahoot.com/

Mindomo, Digital Citizenship,

OSSEMOOC, Ministry provided digital resources

 

Featured image by Nathan Anderson on Unsplash

Learning Network Leadership – A Path Forward

If we are to build an effective learning network,

what will it look like?

An effective learning network is complex, changing, growing, shrinking, morphing over old, new and evolving platforms.  It reaches into classrooms and across the globe, held together by personal learning networks (PLNs) that continually build new connections, cultivate new relationships and learning while allowing others to dissipate.

It centres on individual connections and actions, yet provides far-reaching value.

It allows learning to reach the student desk more quickly than our old structures.  It puts an end to the geographic privilege of access, builds collaborative efficacy over distance, normalizes collaboration as a way of professional practice, and amplifies promising practices.

Individual Workflow – Personal Learning Environment or PLE

An effective network is composed of educators who work openly by default.  Their daily workflow (Personal Learning Environment or PLE)  includes personal learning that comes not only from traditional sources, like books and research articles, but also through efficient searching for educator blogs, tweets (microblogs), ebooks, audio books, webcasts, videos and exploring other online digital content that takes them into classrooms and into the minds of educators.  

Content is organized and shared back to the community in a format that will reach their audience (parents, teachers, ECEs, leaders, community).  They connect online with people in similar or different roles to have discussions, share strategies, consider ideas, connect thinking and stay in tune with what is happening in the world of the people they serve.  They bring in the experts they need to ensure student outcomes are improving.

And, as they learn, they document that learning in a way that is valuable to others, considering audience and format, privacy and purpose.  They share that learning back to their audience in a way that models digital citizenship and celebrates the work being done in their schools.

  1. Collecting Information – Leaders dedicate time for professional learning and develop competencies in effectively exploring and organizing relevant content, including blogs, podcasts, discussions, monographs and articles shared by others through social media.  They share these information and knowledge collecting strategies with peers, teachers, students and the community.  They understand how to access the information they need by leveraging the capabilities of the network.
  2. Connecting in Physical and Digital Spaces – Leaders value their connections to others and the learning that comes from conversations in person and online.  They continue to nurture and build connections, bringing value to their organizations and those they serve.  They model the importance of connectivism for students and other educators.
  3. Curating and Sharing Important Learning with Others – Leaders streamline the flow of information by filtering, packaging, and sharing in a way that mobilizes knowledge for targeted audiences. This is a complex skill that all of our students should also master. 
  4. Creating and Providing Value to the Network – Leaders contribute what they are learning and make their thinking visible to others. This involves documentation and sharing skills, modelling them openly for others in the organization.  Networks are only as valuable as the people in them and what they create and share with others.

Documenting Learning: Capturing the learning (and lack of learning)

  • Understanding a process/protocol for documentation (for example, Documenting for Learning)
  • Choosing an appropriate tool and product (text, blog, image, video, webcast, podcast, report, etc.)
  • Developing expertise in editing products (audio and video editing, website development)
  • Technical expertise
  • Reflecting (what to share, what audience, when?)
  • Modelling all of these for those you serve in the organization (students, educators)

Sharing the Learning (Openly as the Default)

  • Consider the privacy protection of those involved in your learning
  • Consider the intellectual property rights of any work you have used or remixed (develop a deep understanding of Creative Commons Licensing)
  • Consider the most effective and appropriate place to share based on desired audience (with open as default) – online open, online internal, conference, learning session. It is understanding the shifting differences and similarities among platforms, and where audiences reside at the moment.
  • Develop visual media, web and information literacies as well as global literacies
  • Amplify the practices that are making a difference.
  • Contribute in a positive way to the network, modelling this for others in the organization.
  • Where are other learning networks you can leverage?

This view of network leadership presents many entry points, and a shifting variety of digital literacies and skills needed for successful participation in networked learning.

Some of these skills are outlined here.

 

*Featured images by Giulia Forsythe CC-BY-NC-SA-2.0

Resources:

Langwitches Blog: Digital Citizenship and Documenting Learning

Harvard Business Review: Are You Network Literate?

The Digital Skills we Must Teach our Children:  World Economic Forum, 2016

The Tipping Point to Transformation: David Culberhouse

 

Connecting Principals & Dropping Digital

This morning, I am pleased to have the opportunity to work with PQP Part 1 Candidates in the OPC PQP course at HWDSB.

In conversation with their instructor, my friend and colleague and exemplary principal, Lisa Neale, we challenged the notion of “digital leadership” and its relevance in 2016.

We often say we need to “model digital leadership”, but that is getting tired.

The internet has been accessible to people for more than 20 years.  The modelling days are over.  Now it is about being connected; learning, living and leading so that digital and physical are seamless in our schools, as they are outside of our schools.  It’s about connecting with students, parents, communities and the greater world, and making meaning, relevance and change for good.

The slides we used to guide our discussion are below.  Resources are listed below the slides.

The WHY: Digital isn’t optional any more

Are Robots Going to Steal Your Job? Probably.

3 of the World’s Top 10 Employers are Replacing Workers With Robots

Robot-Proof: How Colleges Can Keep People Relevant in the Workplace by Joseph E. Aoun 

Canada’s Digital Talent Strategy March 2016

Digital Canada 150

Michael Geist: Digital Canada 150

Making your own frames for your glasses:
http://swf.tubechop.com/tubechop.swf?vurl=m0syxSC8qiw&start=96.57&end=173.95&cid=8248117

Technology Has a Language. It’s Called Code.

What If? OPSBA 2009

A Vision for Teaching and Learning in a Digital Age OPSBA (2013?)

Automation isn’t new, so what’s the big deal? by Jacob Morgan

Replacing the Professionals: CBC Ideas Podcast with Richard Susskind

The computer that beat GO (video, March 2016)

Learn how to learn!

http://swf.tubechop.com/tubechop.swf?vurl=Wdv9Wihz3uE&start=250&end=337&cid=8248410

 

What Leadership Practices Make a Difference for Students?

 

Building your PLN

Beginning to use Twitter: https://twitterforabsolutebeginners.wordpress.com/

Ontario EduBloggers (Livebinder)

 

Learning About Leveraging Digital

Ethical Considerations

Ministry-licensed Digital Learning Resources for #onted:https://www.osapac.ca/dlr/

Digital Citizenship

School Leader Learning Series: Leading in the Digital Age

Detecting Lies and Staying Safe (by YouTube)

How to use Mindomo (Ministry-licensed in Ontario) video tutorials:
https://docs.google.com/document/d/1AhjvN01r_wQCogSnJ2_PLVBzrQe3iqJdyNJaD1dU8rc/edit

 

 

Extending FSL Learning with Technology: Lakehead University, September 29

Today I was invited to work with pre-service education students at Lakehead University where I learned more about how our FSL teachers are learning to do great work with students in the future.

We explored ways in which they can think deeply about their practice, and how they can continue to self-direct their learning.

Here are our resources from the day.

Slides to organize the conversations:

  1.  Creating a compelling case to use digital tools in the classroom

World Economic Forum: The Digital Skills we Must Teach our Children:

What If? OPSBA 2009

A Vision for Teaching and Learning in a Digital Age OPSBA (2013?)

Robot-Proof: How Colleges Can Keep People Relevant in the Workplace by Joseph E. Aoun 

Canada’s Digital Talent Strategy March 2016

Digital Canada 150

Michael Geist: Digital Canada 150

Automation isn’t new, so what’s the big deal? by Jacob Morgan

Replacing the Professionals: CBC Ideas Podcast with Richard Susskind

The computer that beat GO (video, March 2016)

Learn how to learn

2. Thinking outside the traditional classroom

Using synchronous technology to connect language learners to language experts.

3. Digital Tools

Ministry-licensed Digital Learning Resources for #onted: https://www.osapac.ca/dlr/

School Leader Learning Series: Leading in the Digital Age

Detecting Lies and Staying Safe (by YouTube)

Xpresslab

Antidote

Antidote User Guide (English)

Mindomo

How to use Mindomo (Ministry-licensed in Ontario) video tutorials:
https://docs.google.com/document/d/1AhjvN01r_wQCogSnJ2_PLVBzrQe3iqJdyNJaD1dU8rc/edit

Printable version to access Mindomo

Using Mindomo (printable)

4. Building your PLN

This morning I put out a general call to my PLN to help me find supports for new FSL teacher in Ontario.  Here are some of the responses.

#FSLChat on Twitter Sunday 9 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Sylvia Duckworth

Connecting with FSL teachers in Ontario (by Sylvia Duckworth)

Beginning to use Twitter: https://twitterforabsolutebeginners.wordpress.com/

Ontario EduBloggers (Livebinder)

5. Pedagogical Documentation

Making Learning Visible Through Pedagogical Documentation

Pedagogical Documentation Revisited

Documenting for Learning (slides)

6. Further Sites

It’s a language class.  Shouldn’t the kids be doing the talking?

Grade 3 Community Inquiry

 

Featured image by Sylvia Duckworth

Our Incredible Normal

We have the technology now to learn from the best teachers in the world.

We can access our PLN from almost anywhere, through synchronous and asynchronous technologies.

Today, our students need personalized learning options. Our teachers need to learn according to personal and professional interests.  Our leaders need to be able to consult with experts, and meet their own learning needs.  And all of this is simple with a strong Professional Learning Network, and access to digital tools.

In fact, for many educators, this is their normal.  It’s how they work in 2016.

Today I had the privilege to speak to educators at #depd in Ottawa (Discovery Education) as my PLN mate Paul Maguire was presenting and sharing how to connect with other educators through voxer.

Dean Shareski captured part of the conversation in this tweet:

I was thrilled to hear how clear it was, because up here on the north shore of Superior, I was in a torrential rainstorm during a power outage and I was using my car charger to keep my phone battery charged while hoping the cell coverage would remain intact!

But even with all of that, I was able to talk to the crowd gathered in Ottawa.

Incredible is our normal.

For many of us, it has been our normal for a decade or more.

Our creative, curious, bright children can access the best teachers in the world with our help.  Let’s make sure every one of them can.  Their access to the best instruction should not depend on geography or classroom teacher.

And let’s encourage all educators, including our leaders, to build extensive, rich professional learning networks where they share learning, cultivate relationships, build their understanding of digital environments and establish a positive online identity.

Our physical and digital worlds are now one.  Our learners need to be able to flow between them, and thrive in both.

 

Featured image by Donna Miller Fry: CC-BY-NC-SA-2.0

The Pallisades.  Hwy 11 north of Nipigon, Ontario, at sunrise, late August, 2016.

Learning to Podcast

Podcasts have been a primary source of professional learning for me for many years. I have always wanted to use this tool, and this week, I found two teachers in WRDSB who use podcasting regularly.

Karen Blaak uses podcast conversations with her father to set the themes for her online English 3U course.  The personal narrative and vulnerable stance appeals to students.

Carlo Fusco openly shares his process of capturing voices of the people he learns with.

Both of these talented and dedicated educators inspire me to really think about how I can more effectively use podcasting in my work.

My podcast with Carlo can be found here.

 

I look forward to listening to the podcasts with other educators I learn with here:

Jamie Reaburn Weir

Herman Kwan

 

Featured image from Carlo Fusco’s Podcast: Shift+Refresh+Me

The Critical Vertex

I am continuing to work my way through “Most Likely to Succeed“, the book by Tony Wagner and Ted Dintersmith.  On p. 223 of “Most Likely to Succeed”, the Tripod of Learning for the 21st Century is described.  This is a summary of that thinking.

The three points of the tripod are: 1) content knowledge, 2) skill, and 3) the will to learn.

Triangle of Learning - Tony Wagner
Adapted from Tony Wagner and Ted Dintersmith, Most Likely to Succeed, p. 223

Of the three, will to learn (motivation) is seen as most critical, and the one most likely to be destroyed in the schools of today.

Content, for those with devices connected to the internet, is a free commodity (another reason why it is not okay that not everyone is connected).

Intrinsically motivated people are now free to learn new skills and content throughout their lives, because you can learn almost anything online.

The key question we need to ask is whether or not any given change we make to our education system, or to our teaching strategies, will increase student motivation for learning, and what evidence we will have to demonstrate this.

Motivation for learning does, of course, include engagement.  

But do we also consider empowerment – the ownership of learning that involves persistence, knowing how to learn, knowing how we learn best, working hard to understand, sharing and gathering feedback, and self-discipline to keep at it?

Along with this, the ability to think critically, to communicate effectively in all modalities, to really collaborate (not just co-operate) and to use strategies for effective creative problem solving, are the survival skills our kids need in 2016.

Featured image shared by Alan Levine CC-BY-2.0

 

Are you Asking the Right Questions?

Yesterday, a colleague, Sean Mieghan,  posted a great little video that clearly demonstrates the importance of asking the right questions.

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“Life is Good” owners tell us that their ideas came from the questions their mother asked every day at the dinner table.  She empowered them to come up with ideas – lots of them!

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In the same way that task predicts performance, asking the different questions can change the learning. As educators, how often do we work at asking better questions?

Further reading: https://suedunlop.ca/two-essential-questions-for-reflection/

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Featured image shared under a CC-BY-2.0 licence by Alan Levine.

A Vision of Effective Mathematics Teaching and Learning

What is your vision of effective mathematics teaching and learning in elementary school?

This is a new question for me.  This blog is Learning About Learning, and I have a lot of learning to do about mathematics education.

I am hoping you can help me.

Here are a few of the things I am thinking about right now.  What can you add to this? What have you learned in your own practice? What do you think about when you consider a vision for teaching and learning mathematics?

I think that efficacy is critical.  Students have to believe they can achieve at high levels.  Teachers have to believe that students can achieve at high levels and that teachers have the capacity to  get students to that high level.

Is mathematics skills (as I was taught), or is it ideas (as Dr. Marian Small suggests)?

Is math about making connections?  Is it important that we work with big ideas rather than teaching skills and concepts only in isolation?

I think students have to be able to choose the tools and strategies they need to help them solve problems.

It isn’t up to us to tell them what tool to use, but to teach them how to use many tools effectively so they might pick the one that is right for them in each context.

Math needs to be fun.  Kids need to be the ones doing the thinking. Teaching through problem solving can be very effective (problems are not add-ons).

Teachers need to collaborate with other educators, to share their thinking openly, to challenge the thinking of others, to read and write blogs about their work.  Isolation is a choice, and isolation is unprofessional.  Kids need the thinking of many professionals, not just the one assigned to them.

As I work through #mathleaderNEO over the next few years, I plan to grow this thinking.

I encourage you to share your ideas too.

Featured Image: shonk via Compfight cc

Learning Math “in the Open”

We’re trying something new.

It’s an innovative approach to a challenging problem, and it has the commitment of leaders from throughout northeastern Ontario.

We are building our understanding of how to learn and lead mathematics in our elementary schools, and we are doing it out in the open.

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Embedded in our learning is a commitment to sharing openly in social media (#mathleaders NEO on Instagram and Twitter), and on our website.

We have made a conscious decision to avoid the use of an LMS.

We are not hiding our work behind a password unless privacy is necessary.   In this way, we are embedding the learning of digital literacies into our work.

We are also modelling practices that can be used by anyone to share, collaborate, and learn together.  We are supporting the integration of collaborative technologies to transcend the geographic barriers we face as a region.

We invite you to learn with us, to question our thinking and to push our understanding.  Watch our site and our social media presence for prompts, live-streamed events, conversations and challenges.

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*Featured image designed by SAO Tim Robinson of the Mathematics Leadership Network.