What A Difference A Word Can Make


Like many people, I was very interested in the meme that Scott McLeod had started and was spreading through the internet.  It was the “We have to stop pretending“ premise and it generated so many good thoughts from so many good people.  I was proud to be part of it and I made it a significant part of my “This Week in Ontario Edublogs” post.  There were so many good thoughts from folks from all over the province and I included the ones that I could find in the post.  They’re all good reads and I’d encourage anyone to take a look at them, particularly in the Ontario context.

You’ll notice that Colleen Rose’ post is at the bottom.  Like most of my blog posts, I wrote this on Thursday morning, scheduled for going live on Friday morning.  There’s always a danger when you do these things to omit someone and so when I caught Colleen’s post from the corner of my eye while watching the hockey game, I read it and then went in adding her link to make sure that she was included and the list was as complete as I could make it.  At this point, I’ll apologize for any that I missed and I should have caught.

As Jaimie and I were discussing this as we walked this morning, he made an interesting observation.  He’s so insightful between mailboxes.  For many, writing the post was probably fairly easy.  It was a way to get an opinion off your chest.  Jaimie really dug deeply when he noted that all of us wrote with the “royal we“.  The points made were foisted on teachers by a system built on years and years of best attempts to try to define/redefine itself.  Most are just accepted as the way business is done in the classrooms and in schools.  By identifying these, we’re really looking at practices that are beyond our control.  So, they’re fairly easy to identify and put in list form.

He then raised an interesting point.

“What if everyone changed one word?  Change the “royal we” to I. 

The question now becomes one of “I Have to Stop Pretending…”

I stopped and looked at him.  He’s wise beyond his years.  It’s not the sort of thing that would go viral though.  The finger gets pointed back at you instead of everywhere else.  And yet, the answer could make the biggest change ever in your classroom or practice.  It’s not the sort of thing that you sit back and flail away at the keyboard for the world to see.  It’s internal and probably nobody else’s business.

It’s amazing what a difference one word could make.

OTR Links 05/02/2015


Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.

This Week in Ontario Edublogs


This was kind of a meme week in Ontario.  Scott McLeod started the ball rolling with his post “We have to stop pretending“, a good read in itself.  If you’re not already reading his work, you should for a while.  It’s often not a comfortable read but his perspectives just might make you challenge what you think you know and that’s always a good thing.

Ontario Educators were up to the challenge, listing their own five, and tagging others to extend the conversation.  I was tagged by Brandon Grasley and that was the inspiration for my post “Stop pretending … #MakeSchoolDifferent“.  That was my launchpad to find out what other Ontario Educators were thinking about.

Kudos to Scott, not only for starting this, but he appears to be visiting every blog and commenting.

Obviously, the conversation didn’t stop with Ontario Educators.  There’s a Google Document where the points from all the blog posts has been accumulated.  135 people have written as I write this post.  Wow.

There’s no expiry date on the challenge so if you haven’t shared your thoughts or have been tagged and haven’t found the time yet or you just need the impetus to start your own blog, go for it.


More #sylvianotes

If you’re one of the three people on the internet that didn’t see Sylvia Duckworth’s recent work and retweeted or favourited them so that I got notified, she released a couple of new ones that really seemed to resonate with folks.

Two more gems for her collection.  She keeps them all in this stream on Flickr.


Sides of the Mountain

If you need one thing for a nice start to your day, then you need to visit Paul Cornie’ blog for that shot of inspiration.

He’ll give you one thought and a question to kick your brain into motion.

This appeared on Monday and is so true.  It made me reflect on a few people who, I’m sure in their minds, have reached the top.  It’s so sad to see that they’ve stopped climbing.

I wish everyone a good climb for today.


Please take a moment to visit and celebrate all of this Ontario goodness this morning.  You’ll be thinking at such a fantastic level.

The entire collection of Ontario Edubloggers can be found here.

OTR Links 05/01/2015


Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.