This Wednesday, Matthew Morris joined Stephen Hurley and me for This Week in Ontario, the Podcast. You can listen to it here. With Matthew’s insights, we took on a few new topics. You can read my thoughts about them below. As always, insights from great Ontario Edubloggers.
This was a post from Matthew Morris. Here, he takes on the very popular blogging format “# Things …” and shares some advice about what to do during this time off.
- Purge Your Classroom
- Reflect on the Year
- One New Thing for Next Year
Fortunately, for the podcast, he woke up early and plugged in, thereby breaking at least two rules on his list! But, as you work your way down the list, you’ll undoubtedly agree with them. Most support the notion of mental well-being.
I found that the “Reflect on the Year” to be one of the more interesting things when you consider that most people would consider this a year to forget. To be certain, we don’t know what the fall will look like so consolidating them with the on the fly learning that’s happened in the past few months could be very important.
It’s also advice that Subject Associations should be heeding. For the most part, teachers made it work but I’m sure that many of them could provide guidance to make things better. Just this morning, ACSE member Lisa Rubini-Laforest indicated that she will be leading a panel discussion at their virtual conference this summer about teaching online. All Subject Associations should be highlighting their expertise in this area and the sooner the better.
Take the lead; do them early, record them and place them online so that they’re accessible when most school districts do their end of August professional learning.
I don’t know about you, but I’m finding that social media has got meaner over the past few months. Personally, I have isolated some people from me because of a number of reasons. I’m emotionally happier as a result.
The concept has not gone unnoticed by Jennifer Casa-Todd and she takes on the topic in this post from the perspective of students. They can be brutal at times. She asks about various things that will get you thinking. One in particular struck me as needing to be answered.
If we are talking about adolescents, will their entire future be marred by one mistake?
Of course, Jennifer has many other thinking points and that will make reading her post worthwhile.
Trending this morning is this post from Margaret Wente
It’s an insight from the other side, from one who was “cancelled” due to pressure from Social Media.
During the podcast, I mused that only teachers and students would be able to use the word “similes” properly. Matthew indicated that rappers could as well!
In this post on the Heart and Art blog, Will Gourley does a top six list…
“Teaching during a quarantine”
The similes are certainly worth the read and has to bring a smile to everyone. I know it did for me. I also learned that AWOL doesn’t always have the meaning that I thought it did after watching years of M*A*S*H.
It seems to me that the best of the six was comparing learning to eating an ice cream code with a hole in the bottom. Read the post to see Will tell you why he feels that way.
It’s a great read and I get a sense that it might have been healing for Will as he got a lot off his chest. Read and share.
Where students come from a family to school, the insights from With Equal Step are really important.
Over and over again, we heard about how parents had a renewed appreciation for teachers (or a first appreciation) and how teachers had appreciated the support received from families.
The observations in the post about silos and bridges are important. There’s wisdom here for everyone.
While teachers and parents may be frustrated that they can no longer easily hand off our child to the other at the door, our new immersive connection reminds us that, “Diverse groups make better decisions than homogenous ones.”
I think that everyone could learn something from the observations in Anna Bartosik’s post.
I think that most people can envision the days of going to the library to grab some books or microfiche and doing the research. Since Anna made the reference to OISE, I remembered a couple of coffee places and the cafeteria at FEUT where many of us would meet and work together on things.
So, now you take all that away.
Well, we now have different/better tools. Just open a shared online document and a video conferencing window and take it from there. Anna shares her experience working in this environment.
Sure, we have the tools, better tools but …
And, I also learned about the Noun Project.
I love it when Aviva Dunsiger says I’m right.
As Doug indicated in his comment, many people might be preparing for worst case scenarios right now. While I was quick to reply that my teaching partner, Paula, and I are not doing that, maybe that’s not completely true.
Well, maybe not in so many words but I’ll take what I can get.
So, Aviva is doing some planning
- I’m planning for possibilities
- I’m planning with connections
- I’m planning to connect
- I’m planning through reading
- I’m planning to blog
Knowing her as I think I do, none of these come as real surprises.
Probably all teachers could say they’re doing these things and they wouldn’t be wrong. But I would point to the one in the middle. (Mental note: should have used a numbered list)
The value of connecting needs to go further than “I gots me a Twitter account”. Connecting means building that account to have a critical mass of wisdom both supporting and challenging your assumptions and more importantly to put yourself out there, offering advice, asking for suggestions, working collaboratively, being humble…
Just don’t get yourself cancelled.
I’m really liking it when organizations are rolling with the punches and coming out the other side winning.
MakerEdTO is one of those groups and Diana Maliszewski shares with us how it was done.
Of course, they couldn’t get together and make things happen by all being in the same place at the same time. It wasn’t talking heads; they worked on giving everyone selection and used online breakout rooms to make it happen.
There’s a great deal to be learned from this post and I’m sure Diana would be more than accommodating for those who want to ask questions to make educational gatherings like this work, even in these times.
Please take the time to click through and read all these wonderful posts and then follow these educators online through Twitter.
- Matthew Morris – @callmemrmorris
- Jennifer Casa-Todd – @jcasatodd
- Will Gourley – @WillGourley
- With Equal Step – @WithEqualStep
- Anna Bartosik – @ambartosik
- Aviva Dunsiger – @avivaloca
- Diana Maliszewski – @MzMollyTL
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