This Week in Ontario Edublogs

If you were monitoring your Twitter stream yesterday morning, you’ll know that a draft of this post got sent by accident.  Well, let’s call it what it was – a screw-up on my part.  I was in a rush and needed to save the draft before heading out and it got posted instead of drafted.  My thanks to Aviva Dunsiger and Peter Cameron for quickly letting me know.  

#OneWordONT Update – If you are participating, you need to get your post written by this weekend and notify Julie Balen.  From her document, here is the marked growth in this project.

  • 2015 – 23 words
  • 2016 – 65 words
  • 2017 – 76 words
  • 2018 – 168 words and counting

The collection of blog posts can be found here.  Julie had originally blogged about the project here.

From around the Ontario Educational Blogosphere, here’s some great reading for your Friday morning wakeup…

Rethinking Privilege Through A Self-Reg Lens

I think I may have had the same parents as Lisa Cranston.  Like her, this was drilled into my psyche at an early age.

If you work hard, then you will succeed.
If you set your mind to it, you can do anything.
If you don’t succeed, then you have no one but yourself to blame.

The activity Lisa describes in the post is an interesting one to help see that not everyone starts as a clean slate with the same possibilities.  It’s most certainly easily transferable to the classroom or to professional learning situations.

I think that, as teachers, we see and realize this.  But, do we fully understand?

Cabin Crew

So, Anne Marie Luce took issue with the comments that Stephen Hurley and I made on the radio version of This Week in Ontario Edublogs when we equated the pilot of an airplane as a similar situation as the principal of a school.  Essentially, we noted that the pilot is isolated from the rest of the airplane, behind a closed door.

She saw things differently from us.


Anne Marie saw the principal as more the role of a flight attendant working the aisle and reaching out to every passenger/student.  I’d like to agree but with large schools, is it possible?

Then, she took the analogy a bit further talking about the control tower (Ministry of Education) as being even further removed from the needs of the passenger and yet crucial for the success of the flight.

It’s an interesting comparison.  Talking about this might make for an interesting activity at a staff meeting.

In the past week, I was on a plane myself.  We had to be de-iced before we could take off!  Who’s the de-icer in education?

10 Tools in My Teaching Day

I really enjoy posts like this one from Jon Orr.  It’s one of the ways that I learn about new tools that I may have missed.  From his list of things that get him through the day, I need to learn more about Streaks.

I already use a couple of apps to make sure that the dog gets his steps in but this looks like it manages more streaks than that.  It appears to be iPhone related so I may have to look for something equivalent on the Android side of things.

The other nine tools that he describes were known to me.

Interestingly, in the list, Jon doesn’t indicate a browser as one of his tools.  Since he names Keynote in his list, I thought that Safari might show up somewhere.  As a person who lives daily in the browser with all kinds of web applications to do this and that, I found that oddly missing.  But maybe it’s realistic; with the web everywhere, has the concept of a browser just become so invisible that we take it for granted?

My 2018 Bucket List

Joe Archer responds in this post to a challenge to identify 18 goals for 2018, thereby taking a bit of a liberty with the conventional thought of a bucket list.

There are some interesting self-challenges in the post.  I wish him success in meeting them all.  The choice of a second or more language will be a tough one to meet.

You’ll have to read his post to find out just what language he wants to learn.

There are lots of references to Microsoft applications and groups here which those of you who are so Google-centric might find interesting.

Save a Life — Choose Love Over Fear

This post, from Laurie Azzi, is as sobering as the title suggests.  She describes a project with partnership between the Ministry of Education and OECTA “Hey, Are You Doing Alright? Taking Off Masks, Ending Stigmas, Moving On.”

The project addresses the seriousness of Mental Health issues and suggests that we may gain a better understanding by “removing the mask” and revealing the story behind.

In this post, she relates the story of “Sarah: An Emerging Primary Caregiver”.

It’s a story that applies to many people.

There is an interesting statistic that will give you pause

  • Mental illness affects 1:5 Canadians in their lifetime.

Think about your staffroom or your school population and do the mathematics.  The result is why we all need to be aware.

Where There is Tea There is Hope

I was tagged in a Twitter message by Julie Balen letting me know of this new blog authored by Caroline Black.

Kudos to her for taking the leap.

I’ve done at least one thing to get out of my comfort zone today – I started a blog about my learning. Check out my introductory post here:

Her discussion about tea shoots down the notion that bloggers survive on coffee.  You’ll want to send warm thoughts to someone on Manitoulin Island with the power out.

Take a moment to visit her blog and send her a comment.  Many others have beat you there.

And, for the record, my favourite is Oolong.

The Great Micro:Bit Giveaway!

Well, maybe the second greatest giveaway.

Had Brian Aspinall been at the CSTA Conference last summer in Baltimore, he would have known that we gave every registrant for the conference their own micro:bit.

If you missed out on that, then you need to head over to Brian’s blog.  He’s going to raffle off a micro:bit in “early 2018”.  All you have to do to have a chance is register with him.

In case you missed it, I had the opportunity last weekend to interview Sarah Lalonde.  You can read the interview here.

Please take a moment to click through and read all of these blog posts and register to win a micro:bit if you’re feeling lucky.  These folks will appreciate it.

Regardless, you also need to grow your learning network by adding these folks.

A Livebinder with the big collection of Ontario Edubloggers can be found here.

3 thoughts on “This Week in Ontario Edublogs

  1. Pingback: This Week in Ontario Edublogs |

  2. I was going to write a blog post in response to one of your comments on Anne Marie Luce’s post, but then realized that maybe a comment is better. I’m not sure that I could carry off the analogy, and I applaud Anne Marie for doing so. I think that every principal is different. I’ve been at big and small schools with admin that connect with students regularly, are hardly ever in their office, and make classroom visits and interactions with staff and students priorities. Thomas Ro (@mrt_ro on Twitter), a principal in our Board, made it his goal when working at Dr. Davey (a huge school) to learn every child’s name … and he did. Along with details about those kids. Talk about connecting with kids. But I’ve also been at schools where the opposite is true. So much depends on the person. And that’s what makes the analogy hard, for in education, that individual is key. At times, could it even be teachers in that cockpit, hoping to just stay in their own classroom worlds, and what impact might this have on them, the staff, and the kids? In education, can we afford to have anyone sectioned off from school happenings for that long?



  3. Such is the problem with taking an analogy and trying to extend it to all people. Of course, there are principals that get out and about. In fact, it would be difficult to find one that wasn’t. And, while getting to know each student name is admirable, it’s really that teacher who moves up and down the aisle and addresses each need like the flight attendance. If nothing else, the whole concept of making that connection is the key part of Anne Marie’s post (I think) and to recognize that there are people who are charged with success who are removed from direct contact. Most of the time that lack of content is beyond their control. That person in the control tower really doesn’t know anything much about that person sitting in 16E.

    Liked by 1 person

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