This Week in Ontario Edublogs

This post might be difficult to read.  I have a blogging disability – a bandaid on one of my fingers.  Now, if I was a digital native, it wouldn’t matter because it’s not on one of the two or three fingers that I’d use.  But, I took keyboarding in Grade 9 and 10 and programmed in COBOL.  All my fingers know that they have a job.  So, please overlook typing errors.  I will do an extra check for correctness before posting.  First world problems.

In the meantime, here are some of the bits of wisdom from Ontario Edubloggers from the past week.


Courage and Me

The summer of 2015 will go down for many as the “summer of the mindset”.  In my reading, there has to be more written and talked about on that topic that almost any other issue.  (In Ontario, the lack of collective agreements would supersede that.)  We’ve read so much about encouraging a growth mindset in students and teachers.  Sue Dunlop, in a recent post, takes it to the superintendent level.

She muses about improving ways that she thinks about those she deals with.

You can’t help but think that this encouragement would trickle back to schools with the net result being a better family of schools.  If successful, the next hurdle would be to have her fellow superintendents follow her lead.


How do you do a flipped lesson in a Junior class?

Muriel Corbierre reflects on what a flipped lesson might look like for younger students.  It’s a concept that may well be easier to visualize with older students because they may have more universal access to technology and the internet at home.  They also may be able to handle the differences in technology at home versus at school a little easier.

Challenge or opportunity?

Read on to see what her inspiration was and how it was implemented.  A lesson demonstrating her vision of a flipped classroom is included.

The link to my flipped junior lesson is here. It is a Ontario grade 6 science lesson on electricity generation in Canada. As usual, feel free to try it with your students, and I would be happy to know how it went.

How did we ever share things like this in the days before Google Docs?


Electronic Access Available

The library at the Faculty of Education, Western University has added some interesting titles to its collection.  I think this would be a fabulous read.


[Summer Reading] Comprehension & Collaboration: Inquiry Circles in Action

On the topic of books, this post by Jessica Weber, is a very carefully crafted review and personal action for this book.

“And today, fresh discoveries in cognition, inquiry, and collaboration show us even betters ways to help learners engage with ideas and drive each others’ thinking- not just to remember information, but to build knowledge, to care, to act” (Harvey and Daniels, 2009, p. 7).

My immediate thought is that this would be a good addition to any school’s professional library.


What Do You See?

I see a horse, and a duck, and – sorry Mark.  This is a quick reflection from Mark Carbone on the power of images.  I’d be remiss if I didn’t do a little screen capture of it.

I made a couple of quick connections – first of all, I’m glad that I don’t have to commute in that scenario.  But, secondly, it’s a bit about mindset.  I can remember going to an optometrist and one of the eye test things was to take a look at a black capital E on a red background and then on a green background.  The question always was “which is sharper”.  It doesn’t matter how many times I did it, the green background always made the E look sharper.  That probably has nothing to do with the original question but was I predisposed since green is my favourite colour and that’s making the impression on me?

But, more importantly than looking at another’s image, what about creating your own?  What does your school drone see when it’s flying over the grounds?  (Your school has a drone with a camera, doesn’t it?)  Or, what about student created artistry?  One of my favourite cartoonists was long time London Free Press editorial cartoonist Merle Tingley who signed his artistry with Ting. Ting was hidden in every cartoon.  We took great delight finding it but it also had the effect of making us concentrate harder on the cartoon.  Love this one celebrating the 25th anniversary of Storybook Gardens.


Downsizing south of the border

That “D” word always raises the hair on the back of the neck of educators.  It’s not any better with the politically correct term “right-sizing” either.  Diana Maliszewski takes a long look at resources and location taking us from Canada to the United States to Liberia.

The post brought a great smile to me.  I’ve moved jobs a few times over the years and every time, you get those moments of “what stays and what goes and what comes home with me”.  You like to think that “what stays” improves the cause because of your experience and how you used it.  The reality is that it might hit the junk pile within a week of you moving out.

Beyond this, Diana’s post is a nice reminder of how good things are here in Ontario.


OK, I made it.  My finger is actually feeling better.  Maybe tap, tap, tapping was helpful therapy or something.  Who knows?

Thanks to these great posts to help spread the good word about things happening in Ontario.  Check out the complete list of Ontario Edubloggers here and add yours if it’s not there.

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