doug — off the record

just a place to share some thoughts

This Week in Ontario Edublogs

It’s another Friday and a chance to celebrate some of the great writing from Ontario Edubloggers.

How Will They Remember You?

Teachers have all kinds of Wow! experiences, both in and out of the classroom.

In this story from Aviva, she had one outside story to share that I think that so many of us have experienced. She’s out for a walk and had a former student recognize her. That started a conversation and a reflection about what you might want to consider as you teach the human and not just a body in a seat.

We all remember things – so how do you want your students to remember you?

Her list:

  • How will kids remember you?
  • Be in five years, ten years, or many more years down the line, will they stop you to say, “hello?”
  • Will they share their lives and stories with you?
  • And will they believe that you care?

To that, I would add one more.

  • How did you make them feel?

In Aviva terms, it’s a relatively short post but will get you thinking.

Overseas Visitor and Defining Your Ed Philosophy

Of course, any post that has Diana dressed up for Cosplay deserves a look. I still remember her dressed up at a conference, remaining in character, and wouldn’t talk to me but I did get a wave.

The bigger topic this time around was interesting. She got the opportunity to take Professor Yoshimi Uesugi from Tokyo Gakugei University in Japan and give her a tour of the school thanks to her connection to Neil Andersen from the Associate for Media Literacy.

It was interesting that the request and subsequent tour didn’t include the principal. As I mentioned on the TWIOE show, that might have got a different view of the school as we all have an eye that’s trained on our personal perspective and experience.

It was amazing to walk with Diana as she did the tour. It was after school so there were no students. I’m sure that we all know that the place becomes something different without students. As a result, Diana noticed new things and saw her philosophy come through in other areas.

This was a lovely post and I can’t help but think that all teachers would benefit from. So, if you get a chance to give a tour, take it.

Planning #SOL23 19/31

Amanda is on fire with social media as of late.

She’s a regular poster of images on Facebook and she sees some really wonderful things as she’s out and about and we’re fortunate that she shares them with us.

She’s also participating in the Slice of Life Monthly challenge where she’s trying to write once a day. I can tell you that it’s a huge deal when you start. But, once you start to do it, it does get easier and becomes part of your routine.

As a result, I had a lot of blog posts to choose from and I chose this one.

She talks about two instances of planning; one where a colleague needed her expertise and thoughts on media literacy. The other was her own planning and how she does it. It felt good to read about how much technology plays a part in what she does.

All of this leads me to think about this blog and how I approach it and the planning. My best thinking happens while dog walking and you’ve read about that ad nauseam if you’re a regular reader.

As I thought, I realized that I don’t typically write for an audience.

  • For blog posts, they’re mostly “Memo to self” which are easy to write.  The hardest one to write are Friday’s TWIOE and my Sunday Summary post since they are written for others

Not everyone is as open and candid about their planning process. It was a delight to pull back the curtain and take a peek at her process.

3 Big Ideas to amplify student voice in your Library Learning Commons

I was struggling to think about how I would respond to Jennifer’s post. My initial thought was “Why should libraries be different from any other learning space?”

But then, my wife needed a train ticket so we drove into Windsor to the Via station. I always go in; the new building is interesting to look at but there’s one display on the wall that gets my attention EVERY TIME.

It’s an advertisement for the Hockey Hall of Fame. Growing up, I knew the stories behind each of the masks. As I stand there looking, I realize that I’m in the presence of greatness.

No matter how many times we go into that place, I’m hooked and always stop to look.

Then, I got the point of Jennifer’s post!

I had a teacher-librarian friend at Talbot Trail Public School and I would visit people at the school but would always drop into the library, just to see what was new. There always was something and it truly was the gathering place for students and staff.

Jennifer is approaching her own area and using student voice to craft it into THE PLACE where people want to go. Let’s be honest; you can succeed in education these days online and don’t need a physical library. Teacher-librarians get that and are morphing into different things. This is a great story as she shares her thoughts about it and her planning. Inclusive student voices are everywhere.

Redneck offended by physiotherapist

I typically find blog posts for Friday on the weekend and will have them read a couple of times before doing the show on Wednesday. You can see from the WordPress URL that Doug published this on the 19th.

As we normally do, on Tuesday evenings, my wife and I watch This Hour Has 22 Minutes. My neck snapped when they mentioned this incident of a person from British Columbia.

Beyond this happenstance, both This Hour and Doug’s blog are always filled with some humour and insights that make me smile and feel good about things.

I’m glad that I wasn’t drinking coffee when I read the reference to removing boots and wearing underwear for these formal sessions. Doug has such a unique sense of humour and that makes all of his writing a must read for me.

The post brought a great smile and, when coupled with This Hour really made a nice blogging experience.

International Long Covid Awareness Day

It wasn’t until I read Marie’s blog that I knew that there actually was such a thing as a Long Covid Day.

The disease is still with us and Marie reports some of the scary numbers.

I have a friend who has Long Covid and I read regularly of the challenges that she has. It’s sad to think that she’s not alone.

This day didn’t hit the news that I’m exposed to regularly so I’m guessing that the reporting on the state of Covid is still on the back burner.

I thank Marie for making me aware.

Showing, not telling 22/31 #SOL2023

Another Slice of Life blogger! Yay!

I had to smile at the process that this blog post took. Melanie’s time got hijacked a bit but she did end up remembering it.

With me, it would probably have been gone forever. I have an instance of Google Keep open on my computer at all times should I get an idea and don’t want to forget it. Because, forget it I will. However, if I get an idea when I can’t jot it down … it’s quickly forgotten.

It was a writing prompt and she dropped in on a group of girls wondering about identifying best friends. For me, it’s meeting up by accident or by choice and the conversation continues from the last meetup. If Melanie’s goal was to inspire conversation, it sounds like she was successful.

In the bigger picture, she shared the theme of sadness, anxiety, … All that you have to do is watch the news to see how important this is these days.

I’m glad that she didn’t lose her inspiration entirely. Well done, Melanie.

Please take a moment to click through and enjoy these wonderful posts. Then, follow them on Twitter. All of the previous copies of this regular Friday morning posts can be found in the link in the header.

  • Aviva Dunsiger – @avivaloca
  • Diana Maliszewski – @MzMollyTL
  • Amanda Potts – @Ahpotts
  • Jennifer Casa-Todd – @jcasatodd
  • Doug McDowall – @dougzone2_1
  • Marie Snyder – @MarieSnyder27 
  • Melanie White – @WhiteRoomRadio

This Week in Ontario Edublogs voicEd Radio show

Opening Song

Closing Song

Peace Playlist

Since the incident in the Ukraine, we have opened and closed our Wednesday morning show with songs of long and peace. They appear in this playlist.


3 responses to “This Week in Ontario Edublogs”

  1. Doug, thanks, as always, for connecting Ontario Edubloggers each week! I love hearing what you think of the different posts. It was great to hear your show live this week and see how the conversations then connect with your writing. I absolutely love the question that you added to this post. Such an important one to reflect on.

    Happy Friday!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thanks for the kind comment, Aviva. I can’t help but think that the student you mentioned might just have ignored you if you made him/her feel badly.


  3. […] Friday – This Week in Ontario Edublogs […]


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