Tag Archives: ossemooc

Open Resources for #onted: Becoming a Digital Leader

You’ve decided to self-direct your professional learning on Twitter.  Your students want a class Facebook page.  Your school board is implementing a BYOD policy.

Where can you go to ensure you and your students will thrive in online environments?

OSAPAC has led the creation of three series of resources for Ontario educators.

  1. Digital Citizenship and Leadership for classrooms
  2. What Principals Want to Know about Digital Leadership
  3. OSSEMOOC – a community of leaders supporting each other in getting connected.

 

  1. Digital Citizenship and Leadership for the Classroom

Recently, Ontario educators identified the need for resources for teaching the various aspects of Digital Citizenship.  When OSAPAC looked for a suitable product, it was decided that a living resource was most appropriate.  Ontario educators curated suitable resources for Ontario students by organizing them by division and topic.  Then, they wrote classroom connections for teachers.

The full, open, living resource can be found here.

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Images shared by OSAPAC.ca under a CC-BY-NC-2.0 license
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Images shared by OSAPAC.ca under a CC-BY-NC-2.0 license
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Images shared by OSAPAC.ca under a CC-BY-NC-2.0 license
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Images shared by OSAPAC.ca under a CC-BY-NC-2.0 license

 

Educators choose a category and a division, and are then provided with a list of appropriate resources.

For example, Critical Thinking, Junior Division

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As well, many classroom connections have been written to guide educators in using resources.

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2. What Principals Want to Know About Digital Leadership: School Leader Learning Series

Ontario Principals have written a set of resources for their colleagues who are learning to use and to lead the use of technology to enhance learning.

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3. Ontario School & System Leaders Educational Technology MOOC (Massive Open Online Community) 

OSSEMOOC was created to scaffold and support school and system leaders in their personal self-directed professional learning about how to leverage technology to enhance and enrich student learning.

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The open (no password required, no sign up required) site has a content area where information is shared about events (live chats, Twitter chats, livestreaming conferences, GHO on air, blog hops, collaborative projects, book studies, etc.).

Blogs written by school and system leaders and aspiring leaders are linked to the site.

Courses on how to use social media are run regularly, and can also be completely self-directed.

Links to other OSSEMOOC social media are on the site as well as our 30 days to get connected in 10 minutes per day program.

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Be sure to access these free, open, no password required resources.

Contact ossemooc at gmail dot com for more information on free personal support services for education leaders.

#OSSEMOOC

Feature image by OSAPAC.ca, under a CC-BY-NC-SA-2.0 licence.

#InnovatorsMindset Blog Hop 4: Resources on Assessment for Learning

It’s March Break, and while I am taking some time away from thinking hard about innovation and education, I have been collecting some great resources that I will use to write a response to this blog hop question in a few days.

The provocation:

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Here are some of the resources I have been reading to prepare for this weeks’ blog hop.

One of the most powerful paragraphs comes from Will Richardson:

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Is the best measurement that which determines how motivated a student is to learn more?

Further Resources:

Joe Bower: Assessment and Measurement are NOT the Same Thing

The RSA: Re-imagined System Leadership

 

Michael Fullan: How testing does not align with our education goals

Danger of the Dunning-Kruger Effect

Creating Innovators by Tony Wagner and Robert Compton

Most Likely to Succeed: Preparing out Kids for the Innovation Era by Tony Wagner and Ted Dintersmith

Most Likely to Succeed (the movie)

Working at the Edge: Kinds of School Leaders

OECD: The Nature of Learning

Chris Wejr: Are we Marking Assignments or Assessing Learning?

Dean Shareski on Exemplars

BBC: Stress and Teens

BBC: Robotics used to give financial advice

Pedagogical Documentation (Ontario)

The Gap Between Educators

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

 

#innovatorsmindset Blog Hop #3: What If?

“Daddy, what is that yellow stuff they are spraying on the plane?”

“Daddy, what are those big white things for?”

“Daddy, will we still be able to see the ground when we take off?”

“Daddy, do you think it is snowing in Toronto yet? Will there be snow when we get there?”

I heard all of these questions this morning from a boy, about 7 years old, sitting behind me while taking a flight with his family from Thunder Bay.  They were on their way to Miami, via Toronto.

Then the Mom, who was sitting across the aisle, said, “Why can’t you be that interested in your school work?”

What if?

What if parents asked questions like, “Why can’t you learn about things you are interested in, like this, in school?”

What if parents asked those questions all the time?

Would it impact the pace of change?

Check out some other wonderings about the What Ifs of school:

Patrick Miller

Paul McGuire @mcguirp

Tina Zita @tina_zita

Mark W. Carbone @markwcarbone

Amit Mehrotra (@AmitMehrotra78)

Stacey Wallwin @WallwinS

 

 

#InnovatorsMindset Blog Hop #2: If I Could Build a School..

 

This post is part of a collaborative blog hop.  We all write on a single topic, then post all of the links at once so that readers can read many different viewpoints at the same time.  Join in here. It’s never too late!

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If I were to build a school from scratch, I would start at the top.

That’s right, at the top.

University.

No longer would marks be the thing that determines what children and young adults get to do with their lives.

As long as university entrance is based on ranking children individually, we cannot create the innovative “EY to 12” learning spaces we need in 2016.

Universities are necessary.  We need professional schools.  But why do we think that the people who do best at writing tests will make the best doctors? Or the best teachers?

It’s insanity to judge based on the marks assigned by high school teachers.

Let’s create program entrance requirements that match the capacities required by the profession.

Other university programs can easily be completed through online community-based study similar to what I am proposing below for secondary schools.  But the ridiculous cost of tuition and housing for a basic degree must change.

And what about colleges? Marks can no longer be the currency of program entrance.

Almost half of all jobs are currently at risk of disappearing because of robot technology.

How are colleges embracing this as an opportunity to become more relevant in today’s world?  Are they agile enough to change from centres of knowledge transfer to places that embrace robotics and technology to allow humans to do greater things?

Once we can dispense with ranking children, we have the freedom to really become innovative with our thinking about schools.

Imagine leveraging the power of bringing people into a building every day.  Dean Shareski first made me think of this when we were on a panel together.

Imagine what can happen when school becomes that building in the community where learning happens for everyone.

My school would welcome the community with open arms to model lifelong learning.  It would be a place with resources – family services, a nurse practitioner, a community garden, library, food services, exercise facilities, device access and support for all.

For senior students who don’t require custodial care, I would model the school on the one in the movie, “Most Likely to Succeed“, where learning comes from collaborative projects, reinforced with more formal learning from the best teachers from around the world.  It would be similar to the Inquiry Hub model that won the CEA Ken Spencer Award for Innovation last year.  It is based on cross-curricular learning and conversation, with access to great learning in online environments to supplement the face-to-face opportunities.

First Nations students in remote fly-in communities would learn digitally alongside their peers because education opportunities, and access to pathways, would no longer be tied to geography.

We would use Howard Gardner‘s work on Five Minds for the Future as a basis for learning classical understanding, while building understanding through experiential learning and inquiry would be the norm.

Curiosity and Creativity would be respected and nurtured.  Music education would be a priority for all.

Our youngest learners would be engaged in the current Ontario Early Years model that respects the rights of young people to learn, to self-regulate, and to be in nurturing, healthy environments.

Outdoor play would be part of everyone’s day.  Sitting is the new smoking, and ADHD is diagnosed at epic rates.  Activity is essential to health.

Makerspaces would be the norm. Children would not be sorted by date of manufacture.  Physical and digital spaces would be seamlessly integrated, and tools would be chosen by what each child needed for personalized learning.

Educators would be properly educated for the important role they play in the lives of children.  They would deeply understand knowledge building, constructivism, brain science and learning theory, and they would be encouraged to continue to learn, both with students and on their own.

Time for professional collaboration would be a priority.

This is not a model that ditches the idea that there are things all children should learn, but one that builds on that idea, because just knowing will not be enough for a meaningful life beyond today.

Above all, school would be a place for hope.  The Finnish definition of equity would prevail.

A public education system “levels the playing field”.  Everyone emerges with the same life opportunities regardless of parents or geography.

 

What do you think?

What do others think?

Check out the blogs here.

Paul Mcguire

Amit Mehotra

Patrick Miller

Stacey Wallwin

Leigh Cassell

Tina Zita

Mark W. Carbone

Jennifer Casa-Todd

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Resources:

High Tech High

Dr. Jackie Gerstein – Learning on the Edge & Visions of Education Futures

Pasi Sahlberg – What Makes Finnish Teachers so Special?

What’s Best For Kids?

For the past 24 hours I have been participating in the rich, immediate conversations in The Innovator’s Mindset Voxer Group.

Last night, we were thinking a lot about the challenges of innovating from the middle.  When we challenge leaders to innovate their practice, we are seen as “rogues”, as troublemakers (I can’t tell you how much this reminds me of bright, creative children in a classroom!)

In response (at 1:30 a.m. I might add), George Couros generously jumped in and said that it is important to do “what is best for kids”.

And this is exactly where I see the problem.

As educators, we all want to do what is best for kids.

Perhaps “what is best” for a child is passing the Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test so that he might graduate.

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In that case, the “best for kids” strategy is to teach the child to write a news report, and to practice it over and over again so that they might pass the test necessary for graduation.

An innovative educator might suggest that in a world where media companies are failing, and people are getting their news through Facebook (CBC Radio Noon, Feb. 4, 2016), Buzzfeed, Twitter, etc., that writing a news report is a ridiculous bar for graduation from secondary school.

What is “best for kids”?

Until the structures in the system align, until we can clearly articulate what school is for, what is “best for kids” will be blurry.

We need even better arguments to insist on innovative practices to meet the needs of our learners in 2016 and beyond.

Please join The Innovator’s Mindset Voxer group and keep the conversation going!IMG_2004

 

 

What Does Innovation Mean to Me? BlogHop for #InnovatorsMindset

This post is part of a blog hop on innovation.  Details can be found here.

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Innovation in Education is…

For me, innovation in education has two parts:

a) successfully navigating barriers to create an inclusive, participatory, and responsive learning environment for everyone, and

b) building relationships to successfully and collaboratively break down those barriers to innovation.

We can’t wait for the barriers to come down.  Learning needs are too urgent.  We need to work around the barriers to meet those learning needs.

But at the same time, we can’t stop working to bring those barriers down, in a way that is supported by our community of learners.

Connections

Innovation requires connections.  Education 3.0 is all about connections.  More connections means more ideas, which leads to better ideas (Crowd accelerated innovation).

Shared by Dr. Jackie Gerstein under a CC-BY-NC-SA-2.0 license https://usergeneratededucation.wordpress.com/2014/12/01/experiences-in-self-determined-learning-moving-from-education-1-0-through-education-2-0-towards-education-3-0/
Shared by Dr. Jackie Gerstein under a CC-BY-NC-SA-2.0 license https://usergeneratededucation.wordpress.com/2014/12/01/experiences-in-self-determined-learning-moving-from-education-1-0-through-education-2-0-towards-education-3-0/

What are the Barriers?

CEA recently looked at barriers to change in education.

  • The system values kids who fit the mould.  They do school or they leave school.

 

  • Time (scheduled classes) is a constraint on learning – experiential learning, without the constraints of time, is what we often remember as valuable

 

Image shared by Lisa Neale, Principal, Ancaster Senior Public School
Image shared by Lisa Neale, Principal, Ancaster Senior Public School
  • Confining physical spaces – having to learn in specific places.
  • Competition at all levels is negative – competition among students, competition among schools, competition among school districts (e.g., which of 4 boards in Ontario will you enrol you child in?)

 

  • Competition limits spread of ideas because there is value in a higher ranking.  Sharing makes it more difficult to win, yet ideas are needed for innovation.

 

  • Fear of being judged.  This is a pervasive response from both students and educators.  Has “growth mindset” thinking made a difference?  We can’t do amazing things with kids without the courage to get over the fear of being judged.

 

  • Creative risk takers?  We need innovative leaders, yet rarely are creative risk takers seen  as leaders in education.

 

Shared by Karl Baron under a CC-BY-2.0 license.
Shared by Karl Baron under a CC-BY-2.0 license.

One of the biggest barriers to innovation in education is that the two-digit number that represents children, and where they rank among their peers, determines the learning they will have access to in the future.

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Shared by Dean Shareski under a CC-BY-NC-2.0 license.

We decide on the available education paths by the average mark on the school report card.

When you create a system where a mark determines a future, you can’t ever make it about something else.

Learning to work around and through barriers, while maintaining positive relationships, is successful educational innovation – making the learning needs of all our students the true priority.

Shared by Andrew Forgrave under a CC-BY-NC-SA-2.0 licence.
Shared by Andrew Forgrave under a CC-BY-NC-SA-2.0 licence.

 

Some other thinking about Innovation from Ontario Educators:

Stacey Wallwin

Jennifer Casa-Todd

Tina Zita

Paul McGuire

Patrick Miller

Mark Carbone

Check out more at OSSEMOOC!

*Featured Image created by Tina Zita

Resources:

CEA: Innovation means giving up control

CEA: Sources of Innovation (Stephen Hurley)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Where’s the Beef? – 6/10

When we talk about “Visible Learning” and “Visible Thinking”, can we now focus more on the Thinking and Learning than on the Visible?

This post is part of a 10 day posting challenge issued by Tina Zita. You can’t be a connected educator if you don’t contribute. Sometimes we need a nudge to remember that if nobody shares, nobody learns. Thanks Tina!

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Recently, I was sharing some learning on Twitter with a colleague from the Early Years Division.  I did my homework, and decided to show her my favourite hashtag – #FDK (full day kindergarten).  This demonstration never fails to bring smiles to peoples’ faces, as it is filled with young children doing activities in kindergarten.

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But this time, my colleague said, “I see lots of activities.  What about learning, how do I find that?”

It made me think, once again, about that word value.

There is lots of “noise” on Twitter.  How do we help educators find the value through all the “noise”?

How do we ensure that we are not looking at flashy “busywork”, but that  we are engaging in online examples of visible student and educator  learning?

This book excerpt from Eric Sheninger caught my eye:

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Excerpted from the book, “UnCommon Learning: Creating Schools That Work for Kids,” by Eric Sheninger, published by Corwin, 2015. http://ww2.kqed.org/mindshift/2016/01/14/how-to-determine-if-student-engagement-is-leading-to-learning/

Just because we see pictures of kids doing cool stuff in blogs and on Twitter, doesn’t mean learning is happening.

Last spring, Andy Hargreaves performed an experiment with the audience at #uLead15.  He showed portions of images to the audience, and asked whether the students appeared to be engaged or not.  The demonstration showed us that we need to question our understanding of the word “engagement”.

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The appearance of student engagement does not necessarily mean that learning is happening.

Seeing “engaged students” on social media prompts questions about whether we are looking at real engagement, and whether or not learning is actually occurring.

Shared by Bill Ferriter under a CC-BY-NC-2.0 license https://www.flickr.com/photos/plugusin/12188001525/
Shared by Bill Ferriter under a CC-BY-NC-2.0 license https://www.flickr.com/photos/plugusin/12188001525/

Perhaps when we are viewing “visible thinking”, we need to focus more on the thinking than the visible.

Not all that is visible on social media is learning.

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Featured image by Dean Shareski, shared under CC-BY-NC-2.0: https://www.flickr.com/photos/shareski/3537232931/

After writing this post, I noticed that George Couros is thinking along similar lines.

… and that David Truss is looking at learning here: How Do You Know When Students Are Learning?

Your Friends Take Amazing Pictures! – 2/10

This post is part of a 10 day posting challenge issued by Tina Zita. You can’t be a connected educator if you don’t contribute. Sometimes we need a nudge to remember that if nobody shares, nobody learns. Thanks Tina!

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How do we model “network and remix” for our students?

I adore the images my friends post online! Just this morning, I woke up to this in my Flickr feed, contributed by my friend Alan Levine.

Image shared by Alan Levine @cogdog under a CC BY-NC 2.0 license.
Image shared by Alan Levine @cogdog under a CC BY-NC 2.0 license.

So many of my colleagues generously share their work through a Creative Commons License.

Image shared by Darren Kuropatwa under a CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 license.
Image shared by Darren Kuropatwa under a CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 license.

As a blogger and presenter, I want to share their beautiful work with the world.

I make it a priority to choose images created by people I learn with when I am creating a presentation or a new post on my blog.

How do I do this?

I have quickly screencasted the process below.

 

When our students are creating in online spaces, and we encourage them to use sites like Pexels or Pixabay for images that are free of copyright, we are taking a step in the right direction in helping students understand the importance of ownership of creative work.

But how are we enabling students to license and share their own work?  How are we showing students how to network with others who are also creating?  How are we enabling students to promote work they enjoy, and to use what others have made to create something new?

The Innovator's Mindset by George Couros: http://georgecouros.ca/blog/archives/5715
The Innovator’s Mindset by George Couros: http://georgecouros.ca/blog/archives/5715

We promote networking and remixing by modelling it in our professional practice.

Your friends take amazing pictures.  Why not encourage them to license them, share them online and let you use them in your work?

And why not share a few of your own beautiful creations with the world while you are at it?

Image shared by Dean Shareski under a CC-BY-NC-2.0 License. Great socks!
Image shared by Dean Shareski under a CC-BY-NC-2.0 License. Great socks!

 

 

FEATURED IMAGE: Happy Birthday Danika!

Image shared by Andy Forgrave under a CC BY-NC-SA 2.0 license.

 

Resources:

Are Teachers Taught About Creative Commons?

Stages of Being A Maker Learner – Dr. Jackie Gerstein

The Innovator’s Mindset – George Couros

The Innovator’s Mindset Book Club – OSSEMOOC

Alan Levine – For Barking and Wagging and being Top Dog 4ever! (love your work!)

Darren Kuropatwa – Forever Walking and Learning

Andy Forgrave – Forever dedicated to creativity and sharing!

 

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Enabling Educators to be Learners: 1/10

This post is part of a 10 day posting challenge issued by Tina Zita. You can’t be a connected educator if you don’t contribute. Sometimes we need a nudge to remember that if nobody shares, nobody learns. Thanks Tina!

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How can we enable our colleagues to access the rich professional learning opportunities available online?

 

We want to own our own learning.

We want to self-direct our learning.

In 2016, it has never been easier to do this.  The abundance of open, accessible resources is overwhelming.  Learning to manage and organize the information is a new competency.  Learning to reflect, to share, to find, to converse, to connect, to adapt – we are doing this.

Or are we?

We all know colleagues who don’t participate in learning in digital spaces.

For those who provide learning opportunities online, the sphere of influence has a definite, distinct boundary.  They cannot reach the individual who does not engage in digital spaces.

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In the same way, it doesn’t matter how rich, how engaging, how simple to use or how valuable online learning is for educators  if they don’t know where to look for it or how to use the tools that will allow them to access it.

I think that we have done very well in providing digital resources and learning opportunities for teachers.

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Thanks to Julie Balen for collating this year’s #ontwordont

How, now, can we work to enable the educators who still do not access the rich professional learning environment online?

As someone who self-directs their own professional learning online, how can you help one colleague this month to see some value in engaging in online learning or using online resources?

Leverage your PLN to ask for help.  What is the best starting point for one colleague? What can you show them that will help them see the value in engaging in online, self-directed professional learning?

Resources:

OSSEMOOC

Twitter for Absolute Beginners

Leveraging Twitter for Rich Professional Learning

Ontario Edublogs

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Afraid to be Wrong

Over the past few days, mostly while shovelling snow, I have been listening to one particular podcast from the CBC Ideas Program: Knowledge and Democracy.

Screen Shot 2015-12-21 at 7.29.04 AM The program examines the interaction between science and society, looking at the “position” of the discipline “science” in a democracy.

It is of particular interest to me because of our  recent experiences with a government that chose to muzzle scientists and withdraw support from scientific inquiry.

The podcast is a combination of a talk given by Harry Collins at Memorial University in Newfoundland, and a conversation he had with Paul Kennedy.

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It raises important questions about the position of science in society.  I recommend it to anyone interested in how science is perceived in our society, and particularly for those advocating for science instruction and literacy in our public school system.

One sentence that resonates this morning is, “Would I prefer a society where people expose their ideas to criticism, or where they hide them away so nobody can tell them that they are wrong?“.

In our work with open learning, we often hear that education leaders are afraid to openly share their learning – to be “lead learners” – because it will expose what they don’t know.

Schooling promotes this thinking – that it is better to hide your ignorance.  It is very challenging to shift people who excelled in  school – many who then entered schooling as a profession – into believing that it is better to share ideas than to hide them.

How do we create the conditions in our public education system that encourage leaders to be learners, and to openly share their learning with others?

If we want “innovation”, we need to embrace ideas.

The only way to have great ideas, is to have a lot of ideas.

If our school culture values ‘being right’ more than it values learning, we can’t be innovative.

 

 

Resources:

Are we All Scientific Experts Now? (by Harry Collins)

Ideas with Paul Kennedy: Knowledge and Democracy

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