This Week in Ontario Edublogs

Welcome to my thoughts about another great collection of writing from around the province.

A tentative guide for new student employees

Dave is a long time blogger and notes that he uses his blog to get ideas out of his head and also looks for input and thoughts about various topics.

This time around, it’s about things that Co-op students who are working with him should know before coming into the job. It’s not your regular job:

“I’ve only got them for four months and, for many of them, this is the first job where they are expected to do things beyond simply repeating a pattern they’ve been given. “

He has his thoughts categorized:

  • Choosing to be interested
  • Being prepared
  • Handling multiple tasks
  • Learning to prioritize
  • Managing up
  • The project charter
  • Dealing with uncertainty
  • Learning to be wrong and to fix it
  • Talk about what you don’t know

Each of the topics are fleshed out with his thoughts. As I read through them, it brought back memories of good job interviews. You know, the ones that really make you think.

There was one area that was really foreign to me and yet it’s the lifeline for those who work in a university environment and that’s writing and proofing grant proposals. I think that that and the fact that you’d be working with the Office of Open Learning would be an incredible opportunity for a university student.

It would have been nice to have been insightful and add suggestions but this really is well done. For those in similar situations, the fact that he’s open and sharing with it means that it could help make your endeavours a bit easier.

My Complex Relationship with My Computer

This post really affirms that Diana is human after all!

So many people are plopped behind a computer doing the sorts of things that you need to do these days – in Diana’s case, of course, it’s teaching. It was a big surprising for me to read that she really wants to get away from the computer after a long daily stint. The irony of me sitting here writing what is typically the longest blog post of the week is not lost on me. I won’t write it all in one sitting and may well move to another location in the house to continue.

There’s another message beyond just the computer and that’s the physical setting for working. I’ve long since got rid of a desktop computer, opting for a laptop instead. It kind of docks here connected to external speakers, a microphone, external (small) monitor and keyboard/mouse/trackpad. But, disconnect 6 connectors and I’m mobile. I can work from a chair in the rec room when I feel a need for an ergonomic change.

My computer life is different from Diana. Most of what I do is elective and that makes it somewhat easier. There are a couple of times a week where I’m forced into this chair for what I’m doing for a finite period of time and I really do relish getting up at the end of it. If it’s elective use, it doesn’t seem nearly as onerous. For teachers, elective doesn’t seem to be a word that pops up too often these days.

In the post, Diana shares advice from Noa Daniel about a 20-20-20 rule that is good for everyone.

See, Think, and Wonder Math Routine Using Videos

I couldn’t help but love this post from Deanna. Due to the nature of everything that’s going on, teachers are using computers, YouTube and other video sources like crazy. The sad part is that they’re essentially a “click here to watch and learn” pedagogy.

Not so with this video. It would obviously work during the current set of restrictions but also when things get back to face to face. The video features a large number of images with a winter theme and when the teacher would hit pause, students are challenged to see, think, and wonder – particularly about the mathematics that they see. I could easily see fractals, ratio, proportion, patterning, symmetry, temperature change and more.

It was so refreshing to see somebody creating something new.

Mentoring Moments: Lesson Planning 101 for New Teachers

I remember a comment from a friend who was a kindergarten teacher to me as a secondary school teacher.

“We’re elementary schools teachers; we integrate everything”

At the time, this was an entirely new concept for this Computer Science teacher. Later, working with elementary school teachers and the need to plan for and to make this integration happen. In this post, Nilmini shares some advice and a technique for teachers new to the profession.

  • Start with where you are inspired 
  • Drive your lessons with student interest
  • Backwards design your plan for the Unit

It’s not just a one way lecture; she plays it forward when she shares a personal unit for anyone to use. I can see lots of opportunities for using technology throughout.

Sunday Scaries Intensified: Working My Way Through Some More Big Feelings Today

This was a very un-Aviva-like post. Typically, she’s very upbeat and positive and shows how that translates into great opportunities in her classroom. This post was very different and shows the concerned side of an educator days before the return to work. (thanks to the snowstorm!) She inspired my personal post from yesterday and checked in with a positive reflection of her ultimate return to school.

That made me feel good for her.

But, back to this post, I suspect that she shared the mindset that was going throughout the province as teachers had the angst of returning on their minds.

The bizarre thing is that classrooms may well be among the safest of places to be these days and Aviva celebrates that. She also notes that students and teachers will leave that safe place and join the rest of society that doesn’t have the same situation and rules.

Dance Anxiety

As I read this post, I felt kind of good that I didn’t become an elementary school teacher. I would end up butchering the “Dance” expectations. I think I formally danced at my wedding reception and that may well be it!

Of course, if it became part of what I had to teach, I’d be looking for ideas and suggestions.

This post might well be that sort of inspiration that I would need and it just might be helpful for so many others.

In this post, Stephanie has done some research about what she might need and is good enough to share with the world via this post.

So, if you’re in this situation or you end up with an on-call, you might find it handy!

What makes a great leader? Welcome to my blogcast!

Charles has started a new concept married to voicEd Radio and his personal blog – a blogcast. It’s a podcast with show notes or comments or notifications to come from his blog.

The first show features Cindy Blackstock.

You can listen to the show here.

I hope that you can find the time to click through and read these great offerings.

Then, follow them all on Twitter.

  • Dave Cormier – @davecormier
  • Diana Maliszewski – @MzMollyTL
  • Deanna McLennan – @McLennan1977
  • Nilmini Ratwatte Henstridge – @NRatwatte
  • Aviva Dunsiger – @avivaloca
  • Charles Pascal – @CEPascal

This week’s voicEd Radio show can be found here.

2 thoughts on “This Week in Ontario Edublogs

  1. Thanks again for including my post in here along with so many other ones that I’m excited to read (and a few that I already have). I love hearing your perspective on different blog posts. I think that most bloggers know that others read their work, but we don’t always get insight to what people think. You give us that. Thank you!


    Liked by 1 person

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