#OneWordONT – 2015 and 2016

My #OneWordONT for 2015 was COURAGE.

I checked in here at the halfway point in the year to reflect on how well I was ‘living by the word’ in the first 6 months of 2015.  Courage has been a tough one.  The ‘other side’ of courage can be challenging to manage.

By far the most courageous thing I did was in October, at #IgniteYYZ

Dean Shareski asked us to do an IGNITE presentation on something we are curious about.Screen Shot 2016-01-05 at 8.34.52 PM

I’m really curious about how our education system continues to ignore what kids do in digital spaces.  In particular, I wonder about the impact  that ubiquitous access to violent, degrading pornography is having on our young people.

In the lead up to the event, I chickened out and changed topics three times, but deep down I knew that I had to be courageous and address the issue of how horrendously young women are treated in our schools, colleges and universities, and one of the reasons why this is happening.

I have written about the topic of pornography and youth here, and I have posted the reading slides from the IGNITE below.

Thank you to those who came out to support all of the presenters that evening, and especially to those who continue to draw attention to the impact of pornography on the health of our youth long after the event.


For 2016, my #onewordONT is


We are living in times of exponential change.

Gone are the days when leading professional learning meant hours of preparing content to deliver.  Leading learning is now about organizing your resources so that you can meet the needs of your learners as they arise.

For example, no longer do my colleague Kirsten and I walk into a workshop with a ready-to-go PowerPoint.  Instead, we do our best to anticipate learner needs, we prepare multiple resources that can be used in numerous situations, and then we meet individual learner needs on the spot.

Professionally, we also need to be agile to take advantage of opportunities in a quickly changing world.

What is our elevator pitch?  Can we express what we do in 140 characters or less?

Are we constantly rethinking, revising, re-aligning our strategies and our work with how the world changes?

Are the structures we rely on agile enough to allow us to take advantage of the best opportunities for our students?

How do we manage the constant flow of information?  How do we create meaning and share it?

Do we allow our beliefs to change based on the availability of new data?

Agility on a personal level is also a priority.  Am I fit enough, healthy enough, strong enough to fully participate in all that life has to offer?

I look forward to learning with everyone in my PLN as we explore and share our #OneWordONT focus throughout 2016.

Happy New Year!

What’s your #OneWordOnt? Be sure to share it on Twitter using the hashtag.

3 thoughts on “#OneWordONT – 2015 and 2016

  1. In regards to your “courage” story and ignite speak you might find this interesting.
    Last spring, I was visiting my parents on St. Joseph Island and went to church with them. As I looked at the bulletin I thought there was a typo…a very funny one at that. I can’t remember the whole title but it basically said the sermon was going to be on porn. Turns out it wasn’t a typo! Kirk Durston (@kirkdurston) gave an amazing presentation on how pornography is impacting our lives. As a scientist addressing a very diverse audience, he kept things very factual and cited his stats. It was very eye opening. I believe he had written a paper on the topic but I have been unable to find it.
    It’s not very often that I bring up Sunday sermons at the staffroom lunch table but I did later that week! I wholeheartedly agree that as a society we need to address this issue and schools are our best hope.
    Thanks for having COURAGE. May you display great AGILITY this year as you continue in your courageous ways!

  2. I love your idea of organizing your resources when leading learning. @t_hankinson and I have had that very conversation. How does that look for someone(me) who has access or experience with less resources?

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *