This Week in Ontario Edublogs


This week was a time for a special edition of voicEd’s This Week in Ontario EduBlogs. In addition to a whole bunch of fun and looking at some bloopers, it was a chance for Stephen and I to identify and look at some of the blog posts that really resonated with us this past year.

I hesitate to call them the “best of” as is done in so many places. I like the posts that appear here weekly and they truly are the best thoughts that the authors have to share at the time. In this case, for the show, we tried to find really personal reasons about the posts selected.

They appear below with my original commentary from this blog at the time.

The podcast is available at this link: https://voiced.ca/podcast_episode_post/december-31-looking-back-twioe-in-2019/

I’d like to thank Paul McGuire, Aviva Dunsiger, and Lynn Thomas for being so kind as to share some of their thoughts during the show.


This post was selected by Stephen and, for him, it was a message about parenting, testing, and measuring what is really important.

This appeared on May 24.

Dear Jordan…

One of the powerful things about blogging is that, at least for now, your thoughts will be there forever. (or until you delete it or the service goes away or … well, you get my meaning)

One of the things that Patt Olivieri will have a chance to do with her son is share this post when he’s old enough to fully appreciate it.

In education, we know all about assessment, evaluation, and data points. Our system and our jobs thrive on it. It’s one of the things that separate education workers from other workers. It’s scientific, artistic, and humanist all at the same time.

It’s not as powerful as a mother’s love for her child.

You see, my love, there is no test for all of this, no grade, no level that can ever capture the everyday, ordinary stuff that accumulates to the only stuff that can ever be measured in immeasurable ways.

Wow.

If you’re a parent, you’ll be moved by this post.


Another chosen by Stephen who loves metaphores. This is the second post from Anne-Marie Kees and her thoughts about trees.

This appeared on December 13.

What do trees have to do with well-being? (Trees Part Two)

A while back, I read Part One of Anne-Marie Kee’s thoughts about trees, in particular as they apply to Lakefield College School.

This is an interesting followup as she reflects on trees and how they grow, survive, and thrive. In particular, she shares some interesting observations about community and deep or not-so-deep roots in the section dealing with myths.

Towards the end, she turns to how it is so similar to today’s teenagers. Trees help each other grow and so do teenagers. In fact, by giving them the opportunity to take on more responsibility in truly meaningful ways, you do help the process. Not surprisingly, she makes the important connection to mental health and well-being.

I know that we all think we do that. Maybe it’s time to take a second look and really focus on the “meaningful”.


My first selection is a reminder that, no matter what good we think we may have seen in society or schools, there is still work to be done. I find it sad that this post had to be written, but Matthew Morris did it.

This appeared on August 30.

I Think My Neighbors Think I’m Selling Dope

This isn’t a post that I could write but Matthew Morris could – and did.

Recently, he moved and is now a part of a condo community but, according to the post, he hasn’t been accepted into that community as of yet.

In the elevator, I try to extend my courtesies with “good mornings” and “what floor?” with folks who happen to share the space with me. I’ve been met with cold responses and void eye contact.

Beyond the fact that he’s young, a person of colour, he’s a teacher. Consequently, he doesn’t go to work during the usual times in these summer months.

It’s a very personal post describing his life as he see it currently. I hope that it makes you think. Then, he does a shift and asks you to think of those students in your classroom where perhaps you have made or will make assumptions about.

He helps by having you walk in his shoes.


Much has been said about the cuts already done in Ontario and what’s on the way. If only there was a plan but I think the term “mindless” is used at its very best in the title.

This appeared on June 7.

Mindless cuts to education puts our future at risk

Charles Pascal tagged me in this op-ed piece he wrote for the Wellington Times. He had me hooked at the first paragraph…

A growing number of Ontarians are being hurt—and our shared future placed at risk—by the moment by moment uninformed decision-making by the current government at Queen’s Park. Led by an unthinking premier and enabled by a spineless cabinet, we are in the midst of a very damaging period in our political history.

Charles’ passion for society and education come through loudly and clearly as he challenges many of the assumptions that the current government has made as it has been making the cuts that we seem to hear more and more about each day.

There is an important message that shouldn’t go unnoticed in all of this. It’s easy to see the impact of cuts on students in the classroom but Charles points out that a child’s life is more than just going to school. Cuts can have the impact at many other points.

Set aside some time to read and understand the important message he’s crafted in this article – and then pass it along to colleagues and friends.


Every time I read a post from Deborah, I feel like saying “I’m not worthy”. More than a post, they often read like research articles. This time she takes on virtual reality and thoughts from Kyle Pearce.

This appeared on May 17.

Virtual Reality in the Math Class: Moving from Abstract to Concrete

I’ve been playing around with Virtual Reality off and on ever since I heard of the concept. Most of the applications are pretty predictable – you know – explore a world that may or may not exist in real life because you can. You might experience something unique and different.

One thing that I’ve tried every now and again with limited success is to create my own virtual reality environment. I think that would be the ultimate use of technology and the concept. I’ve come to the conclusion that this is something that I need to grow in to and to have better equipment.

But, back to this post from Deborah McCallum. Her posts are always inspirational and have me thinking about things I might not have ordinarily thought of.

She was inspired by a post from Kyle Pearce about moving from the concrete to the abstract in mathematics. She talks about the opposite – going in the other direction – from abstract to concrete. I like her thinking and it enhances the original thoughts from Kyle’s post.

I think that this may be a new frontier for exploration. In Kyle’s original post, he uses a doughnut example. I think I’d really enjoy Deborah taking on the opposite direction and perhaps show how a concrete approach could turn into consolidation. And, what sort of gear would be required.

Is there room for both Kyle and Deborah’s thinking? I think so.


It was great to look back at the year. I’ve shared the complete lists of wonderful posts over the past couple of weeks. They’re a testament to the great thinking and inspiration from Ontario Educators.

I’m looking forward to more in 2020.

BTW, you can follow these bloggers on Twitter at:

This post appeared on:

https://dougpete.wordpress.com

If you read it anywhere else, it’s not the original.

Year end at voicEd Radio


This morning, at 9:15, there will be a very special broadcast of This Week in Ontario Edublogs on voicEd Radio. It’s not quite Wednesday, but it is the end of the year. For Stephen Hurley and me, it was a year of getting together on Wednesday mornings to talk about a selection of blog posts from Ontario Edubloggers. Except for a few weeks this summer when Stephen went off the grid, we were pretty faithful in meeting that time commitment.

If you read my blog post last Friday, I had put together a list of all of the blog posts that made my This Week in Ontario Edublogs blog post on Friday mornings. Of those, five were talked about on the radio show. Two were held back for the post. The original list featured the Friday posts; the list you’ll find below are those that were discussed on Wednesday morning.

It wasn’t something that I had kept track of; it was just when Stephen and I thought to do a special end of year show that I went to work and created the document. It was actually pretty easy. I share a Google Document with Stephen and it was just a matter of going through the document and grabbing the information. A typical entry looks like this:

During the summer, we invite guests to come on the show with us. It’s just a matter of sharing this document with them so they know the posts, where it’s located, and some of my thoughts. We had a great group join us this year.

  • July 3 – Peter Cameron
  • July 10 – The BeastEDU – Andrea Kerr, Kelly MacKay
  • August 14 – Terry Greene
  • August 21 – Lynn Thomas
  • August 27 – Beth Lyons
  • November 6 – Ramona Meharg (at the Bring IT, Together Conference)

It’s so nice to be able to reach out and have these folks join us. Of course, they’re all bloggers themselves.

At one point in the show, Stephen and I made reference to ourselves as the old guys in the balcony from The Muppets. It was Diana Maliszewski that either knew or did the research to let us know that they actually had names – Statler and Waldorf.

If people only knew!

The best part of the show happens in the 15 minutes before the show actually goes live. We do our sound check and get caught up on the week’s events.

I’m constantly amazed that we’re able to make it work. Things are so low-tech on my end. Just a computer, an external monitor, a Samsung set of earbuds, and an internet connection. All the magic happens on Stephen’s end where he sets up things and then we go live. All of the shows are posted on the voicEd site.

So, we’ve been busy putting things together for this year end show. I hate to use the term “best of 2019” because all of the blog posts that we chat about weekly are excellent and insightful. Without the regular amazing content, there would be a lot of dead air.

And, thanks to a suggestions from Sheila Stewart, there will be a blooper section although I’ll point out that it’s not really fair. We do the show live but most listeners hear it later via podcast. By that point in time, Stephen has had the opportunity to edit out any fluffs on his part. Mine remain!

And, here’s the complete list of amazing bloggers and their blog titles that we had a chance to chat about on the show. Sometimes, we even stayed on topic.

I hope that you can join us this morning at 9:15.

BloggerBlog post title
Alanna King – @banana29Leaping with no net: autism for teens in Ontario
How to coddle a volunteer
UX/UI Design with Canada Learning Code
Albert Fong – @albertfongTeachers tell stories
Amanda Potts – @AhpottsWhy he comes to class
He may be right; I may be crazy
He talks about me at home
Exam
When friendship lasts
Enough
For Mrs. Barkman
Amy Bowker – @amyebowkerGoal Setting in the Classroom
Andrea Haefele – @andreahaefeleDear Other Mom
Andrew Campbell – @acampbell99An Alternative To A School Cellphone Ban
Ann Marie Luce – @turnmeluceThe value of the Exit Interview
#EdcampBeijing
Morale Compass
#oneword2019
Anna Bartosik – @ambartosikCitation practices, using databases, and literature reviews #MyResearch
Anne Shillolo – @anneshilloloOnline Pre-School
Anne-Marie Kee – @AMKeeLCSShould schools ban cell-phones?
What do trees have to do with well-being? (Trees Part Two)
Focus on Trees – Part One
Arianna Lambert – @MsALambertHour of Code Is Coming…
Association for Media Literacy – @A_M_LTaking Old Town Road to School
Aviva Dunsiger – @avivalocaMy Look At The Holidays: What Are Your Stories?
Back To The Map Of Canada: What Do You Do With That 2%?
Wondering About WHMIS: When Compliance Training Makes You Reflect On Assessment & Evaluation
What Makes A Partnership Work?
What Do You Do On A Perfect Day?
How Do We Use Our Powerful Words For Good?
Educating Grayson: How Do We Make Inclusion Work?
Beate Planche – @bmplancheMomentum and the positive side of constraints
Beth Lyons – @mrslyonslibrarySharing the LLC Space- An Advocate’s Infographic
Maker. Space. Inquiry. Place. What might be the connection?
What the Librarian Read Part 1
On Being a “Teacher-Librarian”
Preserving the Cup
Podcast PD?
Social Media- What is it good for?
Bonnie Stewart – @bonstewartExperience Required: Walking the Talk in Digital Teaching & Learning
The #UWinToolParade: Open Pedagogy as #OER
Brenda Sherry – @brendasherryExploring By The Seat of Your Pants
Cal Armstrong – @sig225The structure of the Interstitial App, or, Observations & Conversations – Part 2
Charles Pascal – @CEPascalMindless cuts to education puts our future at risk
Colleen Rose – @ColleenKRTake 10 Minutes
A Stitch in Time
David Carruthers – @dcarrutherseduGo Magic! Let’s do this! 🙂
Do You Have A Safety Net?
Reflections from the Tech Guy
David Petro – @davidpetro314Math Links for Week Ending Jan 25th, 2019
Deanna McLennan – @McLennan1977Autumn Math Walk
What does the equal sign really mean?
Deb Weston – @dr_weston_PhDClass Size and Composition Matters
Why students walked out today – April 4th, 2019
Debbie Donsky – @DebbieDonskyFrom Compliance to Commitment Takes Personal Accountability
A Career Marked by Change: Learning the Big Lessons in Some Small Places
“You aren’t what I was expecting…”
The Fear of Writing: Finding Your Voice When Writing within an Organization
Deborah McCallum – @BigideasineduLeadership & Goal Setting for Math Learning
Guided Reading for Math?
Virtual Reality in the Math Class: Moving from Abstract to Concrete
Guided Reading with Adolescent Readers
Derek Tangredi – @dtangredWorking with Children in Makerspaces
Diana Maliszewski – @MzMollyTLFirst Day Back
Reconnecting with my cultural roots
Making Kindergarten Media Projects with Meaning
The Gift of Staying Connected – Thanks Andrew and Diana
Further Reflections after Faith in the System Podcast
Reflections on NAMLE Part 1
Happy 40th Anniversary AML!
Diana Maliszewski and Neil Andersen – @MzMollyTLBaby It’s Cold Outside: The Saga of a Song
Fair Chance Learning – @FCLEduIndigenous Institute Blends Tradition & Tech to Preserve Anishinaabe Teachings
Using Technology to Drive Language Skills and Create Meaningful Learning Opportunities
Fleming College Learning Design and Support Team Blog – @FlemingLDSWeek 4, Winter 2019
Heather Swail – @hbswailTMB Withdrawal
Heather Theijsmeijer – @HTheijsmeijerFirst Week of Math: Resources to help make connections & build relationships
Making the Shift Toward Tracking Observations
Heidi Solway – @hsolwayRoll Out The Red Carpet
Helen DeWaard – @hj_dewaardThinking about Feedback
Ian McTavish – @ianmctClass size changes – my perspective. #ontedannouncement
Indygo Arscott – @decolonizeontOntario Students Hold Walkouts in Protest of Progressive Conservative Party’s Policy Proposals
Irene Stewart – @IrenequStewartIrene learns about teaching: Part 1a
Irene learns about teaching – Part 1b
Interviewing My Domain
James M Skidmore – @JamesMSkidmoreA MODEST SOTL PLAN: WORKING WITH LITERARY PASSAGES
Jamey Byers – @mrJameyByersBOOKMARKS ON TWITTER
Jay DuBois – @Jay__DuboisThe Grade 3 ‘Travelling Genius Bar’
Jen Giffen – @virtualGiffAnother Day another EdTech conference! #ECOOCamp 2019
Jennifer Aston – @mme_astonThis Blog is not Dead it’s…
Another One Bites the Dust?
Parlons Minecraft BIT2019
Building a Google Site and Relationships with Parents
A Tale That Endures
Jennifer Brown – @JennMacBrownReflection and Self-indulgence
Jennifer Casa-Todd – @jcasatoddThree lessons on Grit and Resilience
My device. My terms. 3 strategies for finding balance.
No Wifi: Pretend it’s 1993
What school and Curling have in common
Jessica O’Reilly – @Cambrian_JessSo Why SoTL?
Sidney Helped
Finding Middle Ground
Jessica Outram – @jessicaoutramMoccasin Flowers: A Work-in-Progress
Jim Cash – @cashjimWhy do you want kids to code?
Mathland Actually
Scratch 3.0 is Here!
Joe Archer – @ArcherJoeExploring Classroom Expectations while using WipeBook Chart Paper
Swimming with my fish! Do it ALL!!
Joel McLean – @jprofNBThe DNA of a leader
“I Don’t Have Time For That”
R.E.A.L. Leadership
Find A Vision
A Positive Climate For A Culture Of Growth
John Allan – @mrpottzSTUDENT INFOGRAPHICS
TESOL’S ELECTRONIC VILLAGE ONLINE
Jonathan So – @MrSoClassroomPerseverance, struggle and a little grit: How running a 53km race relates to Education
Judy Redknine, Toby Molouba – @redknine and @tmoloubaIt’s a Matter of Relationships
Karaline Vlahopoulos – @KaralineVla99 Needs and They’re All Student Related
Kelly McLaughlinSchool year start up
Kyle Pearce – @MathletePearceHOW TO START THE SCHOOL YEAR OFF RIGHT
Kyleen Gray – @TCHevolutionThe problem(s) with mandatory e-learning…
Why (as a teacher and parent) I Value Standardized Testing
Arguments for Teacher Performance Pay in Ontario
Laura Bottrell – @L_BottrellRethinking End of Year Countdowns
Laura Elliott – @lauraelliottPhDStandardized bodies < Accepting & Celebrating Difference
My ‘Why?’ …
Lisa Corbett – @LisaCorbett0261This week we did…something
MATH, NUMBER SENSE & NUMERATION, NUMBER TALKS, PATTERNING & ALGEBRA
Update: Assessment
Slice is of Life: Who Needs Me?
Day 3: Relax
Summer Math:Counting and Subitizing
Lisa Cranston – @lisacranWe teach students not just content
Beyond Behaviour Charts
Lisa Floyd – @lisaannefloydText to Speech and Translation Blocks in Scratch 3.0
Lynn Thomas – @THOMLYNN101H is for Happy
F is for Frankenstein, Focus & Future Ready
D is for Debate
B is for Brainy, Bold & Beautiful
Q is for Questions and Not Getting Caught in the Quagmire
P is for Patience
O is for Outside the Box
L is for light
Mark Chubb – @MarkChubb3Strategies vs Models
One-Hole Punch Puzzle Templates
The More Strategies, the Better?
Martina Fasano – @RokStarTeacherWhy Caring Adults Matter: An Ode To My Alma Mater
Matthew Morris – @callmemrmorrisCell Phone Ban in Classrooms
Does Black History Month still hold meaning in 2019
5 School Ideas for Black History Month
Detentions
I Think My Neighbors Think I’m Selling Dope
Matthew Oldridge – @matthewoldridgeUsing Play to Teach Math
Too Random, Or Not Random Enough: Student Misunderstandings About Probability In Coin Flipping
Melanie Lefebvre – @ProfvocateMelWHY FRUSTRATED STUDENTS MADE MY DAY TODAY
An Oscar-esque thank you speech type of blog post
I DON’T USE TEXTBOOKS
Melanie White – @WhiteRoomRadioNurturing Guilt
Merit Centre – @Self_RegA Self-Reg Look At “Preparing Kids”: Is It Time To Change The Conversation?
No Such Thing as a Bad Kid
Michelle Fenn – @toadmummyThe Gender Gap in Technology
Coding with Microbits
Mike Washburn – @misterwashburnWHEN LAST PLACE FEELS LIKE FIRST PLACE
Nancy DrewReckless Abandon!
Noa Daniel – @noasbobsPitch Day 2019
Elevate your Audience
My River, My Mountain- A Day of Learning with Jennifer Abrams
Patt Olivieri – @pattolivieriDear Jordan…
Paul Gauchi – @PCMalteseFalconFriday Two Cents: Positive Thoughts For The New Year
Friday Two Cents: Honour Our Past To Understand Our Present
Paul McGuire – @mcguirpWhen your plan is no longer the plan
Tour de Mont Blanc – Day Eight for Climb for Kids
When it comes to mental health in Canada, the gap is still too wide
“What Do You Say When Our Social Institutions Are Under Attack?”
Trolls Creep Into the Education Debate in Ontario
Self-Regulation and Evangelism in Education
Class Sizes Really Matter
Has inclusive education gone too far? – The Globe and Mail debate
Naming and Shaming
Walking in a New Way – the Ottawa Indigenous Walk
Peter Beens – @pbeensSnippets #1
Students’ Favourite Affinity Designer Tutorials
Peter Cameron – @cherandpeteGO! Explore!
Find your inner explorer
A Day (or three) in the Life of this Grosvenor Teacher Fellow
For Water: Learn. Adopt. Protect. Walk.
Our Kids’ Spelling is Atrocious
Peter Skillen – @peterskillenDear Ontario Educators,
Ramona Meharg – @ramonameharg#ECOOCamp Owen Sound
50th Episode – I Wish I Knew EDU learning
Snow Day Chaos – the Lament is over!
Fill Your Own Cup With Gratitude
Rebecca Chambers – @MrsRChambersAnother Year and The Unlearning Continues
Dreams do come true if you persevere, my vision of an experiential passion based classroom have come true.
Rob Cannone – @mr_robcannoneIf not now, then when?
Designing the Learning Environment : Why students, pedagogy and critical reflection should come first
On cultivating curiosity in the classroom
Rola Tibshirani – @rolatHow To Self Engineer A Learning Community?
When Students Shine!
Rolland Chidiac – @rchidsEsports with Primary Students – Part 1: Jumping In
Esports in Primary – Part 2: Next Steps
Ruthie Sloan – @RoosloanSecret Truths of Empathy While Learning to Advocate
Context is Key
Sean Monteith – @KPDSB_SchoolsA New Year, Perspective From Experience
It’s “Time”
Sheila Stewart – @sheilaspeakingMinding the Children
Chocolate by Trial and Error
Good Tree Stories
Shelly Vohra – @raspberryberet3Inquiry, Social Justice, & the SDGs
Digital Breakouts Using Google Forms
ETFO Innovate 2019
Shyama Sunder – @ssunderaswaraFinal Thoughts
STAO Blog – @staoapsoExperiment of The Week – Homemade Projector by Steve Spangler
KEEPING BIRDS SAFE INQUIRY – GRADE 1
Stepan Pruchnicky – @stepanpruchReader’s Theatre = Experiential Learning
Canada’s New Food Guide
Sue Bruyns – @sbruynsHere’s to Paving New Ground
Adjust the Tuning
Proofreader or Instructional Leader?
Sue Dunlop – @Dunlop_SueWhy Summer is a Perfect Time for Reflection
Are You Caught in the Whirlwind?
Just Stop Using “You Guys”
T.J. Hoogsteen – @marexdad21st Century Skills: What Students Need Now or Just More of the Same Bad Ideas?
TDSB Professional Library – @ProfLibraryTDSBNew books: take an eReading March break!
Terry Greene – @greeneterrySo Long and Thanks For All of This
The Open Learner Patchbook Went To The PressEd Conference
Hatching a PLN
Reset, Reboot, RemOOC
Thanks Milan – Lessons Learned at #OEGlobal19
Feeling the Ground by Getting Some Air
What’s With All The Sharing?
TESLOntario Blog – @TESLontarioWHO HAS THE FINAL SAY ABOUT STUDENT MARKS?
The Beast – @thebeasteduA Guy Walks into a Bar
I Am Right Here
Keys to a Rocket Ship
Recess is as Real Life as it Gets
The Merit Centre – @self_regWords Matter. But Sometimes the Interbrain Matters More.
Tim King – @mechsympStretched Thin
Tim King – @tk1ngPrivilege Masquerading as Superiority
Class Caps are a Low Resolution Solution to a High Resolution Problem
Cyber Dissonance: The Struggle for Access, Privacy & Control in our Networked World
2019-20: Persistence and Possibility
Tina Zita – @tina_zitaA Journey with Sketchnotes
Will Gourley – @WillGourleyShoulders of giants
Undercover Boss
Beyond
Be Strong in the Face of Poor Government
Back in the day was better (because now is often unbearable)
The best present is one you can give year round
Zelia Tavares‏ – @zeliamctSkype-A-Thon 2019
EdTechTeam Ontario Summit 2019
Hack the Classroom 2018

This Year in Ontario Edublogs


Yes, you read that correctly and it’s not a typo. The normal post for a Friday morning around here is “This Week in Ontario Edublogs” but this is a bit different.

I’ve been doing that post for a long time now. Using WordPress’ duplicate title feature, that title has appeared 389 times. There are actually a few more because I’ve made typos and called it “The Week in Ontario Edublogs” a few times. So, if there are 52 weeks in a year, 52 goes into more than 389

a whole bunch of times. Actually, that’s a post a day for a year and then some.

So, why did I start to do this?

It goes back a while (I’m still doing the math). Blogging was kind of young and there were blogging recommendations that people would share. The problem this Ontarian realized, was there were a lot of blogs written right here in the province – why aren’t we shouting from the rooftops the amazing things we’re doing here? dougpete.wordpress.com was my rooftop.

I stored, and continue to store, Ontario Educational blogs here. Some remain and others have come and gone; if nothing else, it’s a collection of professionals who have shared their thinking for the world to read.

This week, I’ve done something that I’ve wanted to do for a while now. Next week during our weekly podcast, Stephen Hurley and I will be doing a year-end summary so I wanted to create a document of all of the blog posts that we talked about on a weekly basis. Now, that document which I’ve since shared with him doesn’t include all of the posts that I write for my blog post. Typically, we talk about five on the show; then there’s a couple extra I add just for here. I don’t want him stealing all my readers!

It took a while but I went through all of the posts on this blog that I use to celebrate great Ontario blogging on Fridays. I really hope I captured them all. You’ll understand if I say that my eyes got crossed a few times. Of course, there are people who have been featured numerous times here. They obviously love to blog and share their ideas and I love to read them. There was a time when I would leave comments on their blogs. But, by putting them here, I’m in control and can sometimes offer more than just words.

Before I share the list from you, let me step back from the rooftop and go to street level and look up at these people. As I was working this document, I was just in so much awe as I revisited their titles and what I had written about them at the time. There is absolutely so much great writing and reflection. I am truly, truly humbled by looking at it. I hope that you don’t skip past this. Please take some time and look at the titles and the wide variety of content and wisdom that was shared.

I’m already having blogger’s remorse as I look at the finished product. There were some things that I could have done better. This was originally not going to go beyond the two of us but it was too impressive not to share.

But, there’s always next year.

Please enjoy and appreciate the absolute genius in the content that has been shared with the world this past year. Ontario bloggers are a terrific example of what people who are serious about their profession do. They share successes, outline next steps, and then push themselves to higher levels. I can think of no higher praise for both their efforts as bloggers or their dedication to learning and their profession.

BloggerPost
Alanna King – @banana29Leaping with no net: autism for teens in Ontario
How to coddle a volunteer
UX/UI Design with Canada Learning Code
HTML/CSS with Canada Learning Code
When Political Penny-Pinchers Pilfer Your PD
Albert Fong – @albertfongTeachers tell stories
Amanda Potts – @AhpottsWhy he comes to class
He may be right; I may be crazy
He talks about me at home
Exam
When friendship lasts
Enough
For Mrs. Barkman
Amy Bowker – @amyebowkerGoal Setting in the Classroom
Andrea Haefele – @andreahaefeleDear Other Mom
Andrew Campbell – @acampbell99An Alternative To A School Cellphone Ban
Your Students Should Nap (and so should you)
Ann Marie Luce – @turnmeluceThe value of the Exit Interview
#EdcampBeijing
Morale Compass
#oneword2019
Anna Bartosik – @ambartosikCitation practices, using databases, and literature reviews #MyResearch
Independent Reading and Research, Week 1: Data Tool Analysis #MyResearch
Anne Shillolo – @anneshilloloOnline Pre-School
Anne-Marie Kee – @AMKeeLCSShould schools ban cell-phones?
What do trees have to do with well-being? (Trees Part Two)
Focus on Trees – Part One
Have you ever put a tooth in the microwave?
Arianna Lambert – @MsALambertHour of Code Is Coming…
Podcasts for Students
Long-Range Plans
The Heart and Art of Teaching and Learning Resource
Association for Media Literacy – @A_M_LTaking Old Town Road to School
Aviva Dunsiger – @avivalocaMy Look At The Holidays: What Are Your Stories?
Back To The Map Of Canada: What Do You Do With That 2%?
Wondering About WHMIS: When Compliance Training Makes You Reflect On Assessment & Evaluation
What Makes A Partnership Work?
What Do You Do On A Perfect Day?
How Do We Use Our Powerful Words For Good?
Educating Grayson: How Do We Make Inclusion Work?
Do We Need A Scaffolded Approach to Bullying
A Lot More Good …
How Do You Define Beauty?
When “Dear Other Mom” Becomes “Dear Educators And Parents”
Can Kids Understand Equity?
This is WHY I Speak Up. Why Do You?
Beate Planche – @bmplancheMomentum and the positive side of constraints
Beth Lyons – @mrslyonslibrarySharing the LLC Space- An Advocate’s Infographic
Maker. Space. Inquiry. Place. What might be the connection?
What the Librarian Read Part 1
On Being a “Teacher-Librarian”
Preserving the Cup
Podcast PD?
Social Media- What is it good for?
Preserving the Cup
Bonnie Stewart – @bonstewartExperience Required: Walking the Talk in Digital Teaching & Learning
The #UWinToolParade: Open Pedagogy as #OER
bringing back the participatory: a story of the #ProSocialWeb
Brenda Sherry – @brendasherryExploring By The Seat of Your Pants
No First Day Jitters This Year!
Cal Armstrong – @sig225The structure of the Interstitial App, or, Observations & Conversations – Part 2
Observations & Conversations: Part 1 of many?
Choose your own… PD.
Charles Pascal – @CEPascalMindless cuts to education puts our future at risk
Colleen Rose – @ColleenKRTake 10 Minutes
A Stitch in Time
Keep it Simple. (thanks, Rachel)
Conrad Glogowski – @teachandlearnPodcasts on Youth Development
David Carruthers – @dcarrutherseduGo Magic! Let’s do this! 🙂
Do You Have A Safety Net?
Reflections from the Tech Guy
David Petro – @davidpetro314Math Links for Week Ending Jan 25th, 2019
Math Links for Week Ending Oct. 25th, 2019
Math Links for Week Ending May 3rd, 2019
Deanna McLennan – @McLennan1977Autumn Math Walk
What does the equal sign really mean?
Deb Weston – @dr_weston_PhDClass Size and Composition Matters
Why students walked out today – April 4th, 2019
Did you get your flu shot yet?
Violence in Ontario Schools
Evaluating e-learning
The Courage to Teach
Debbie Donsky – @DebbieDonskyFrom Compliance to Commitment Takes Personal Accountability
A Career Marked by Change: Learning the Big Lessons in Some Small Places
“You aren’t what I was expecting…”
The Fear of Writing: Finding Your Voice When Writing within an Organization
The Caterpillar Math Problem: Is it possible to be unbiased in our assessment?
Deborah McCallum – @BigideasineduLeadership & Goal Setting for Math Learning
Guided Reading for Math?
Virtual Reality in the Math Class: Moving from Abstract to Concrete
Guided Reading with Adolescent Readers
Make your Feedback more Productive
Supporting Struggling Students in Math
Derek Tangredi – @dtangredWorking with Children in Makerspaces
Diana Maliszewski – @MzMollyTLFirst Day Back
Reconnecting with my cultural roots
Making Kindergarten Media Projects with Meaning
The Gift of Staying Connected – Thanks Andrew and Diana
Further Reflections after Faith in the System Podcast
Reflections on NAMLE Part 1
Happy 40th Anniversary AML!
Hit By A Car
Reflections on NAMLE Part 2
Reflections on NAMLE Part 3
Happy #DLweekTO
Full STEAM ahead with Blue Spruce Books
My Many Microaggressions
Diana Maliszewski and Neil Andersen – @MzMollyTL and @mediaseeBaby It’s Cold Outside: The Saga of a Song
ECOO – @ecooorgECOOcamp Owen Sound 2019
Fair Chance Learning – @FCLEduIndigenous Institute Blends Tradition & Tech to Preserve Anishinaabe Teachings
Using Technology to Drive Language Skills and Create Meaningful Learning Opportunities
Implementing Survivor Mode into Student Learning in MinecraftEE
HP Maker Challenge
Fleming College Learning Design and Support Team Blog – @FlemingLDSWeek 4, Winter 2019
Harnessing Assessment – @HarnessingADescriptive Feedback: The Engine that Powers Learning
Hatch Coding – @hatchcodingSpending time with professional teachers
Heather Lye – @MsHLyeBittersweet Year End
Heather Swail – @hbswailTMB Withdrawal
Heather Theijsmeijer – @HTheijsmeijerFirst Week of Math: Resources to help make connections & build relationships
Making the Shift Toward Tracking Observations
When a Drawing is Not Just a Drawing
Heidi Solway – @hsolwayRoll Out The Red Carpet
30 Days of Gratitude: Day 26 – The Perfection in Imperfection
Helen DeWaard – @hj_dewaardThinking about Feedback
Helen Kubiw – @HelenKubiwGoodnight, World
Ian McTavish – @ianmctClass size changes – my perspective. #ontedannouncement
Indigenous Awareness – @indigenousawrns‼️‼️ELECTION DAY‼️‼️
Indygo Arscott – @decolonizeontOntario Students Hold Walkouts in Protest of Progressive Conservative Party’s Policy Proposals
Irene Stewart – @IrenequStewartIrene learns about teaching: Part 1a
Irene learns about teaching – Part 1b
Interviewing My Domain
James M Skidmore – @JamesMSkidmoreA MODEST SOTL PLAN: WORKING WITH LITERARY PASSAGES
ORGANIZING PRINCIPLES
Jamey Byers – @mrJameyByersBOOKMARKS ON TWITTER
Jay DuBois – @Jay__DuboisThe Grade 3 ‘Travelling Genius Bar’
Reset?
Jen Apgar – @jenapgarDesign Thinking and 3D printing challenges
Jen Giffen – @virtualGiffAnother Day another EdTech conference! #ECOOCamp 2019
Twitter – To Reply or Reply All?
Jennifer Arp – @Jennifer_ArpFull-Day Kindergarten at it’s best: awesome things are happening in Room 102
Jennifer Aston – @mme_astonThis Blog is not Dead it’s…
Another One Bites the Dust?
Parlons Minecraft BIT2019
Building a Google Site and Relationships with Parents
A Tale That Endures
Jennifer Brown – @JennMacBrownReflection and Self-indulgence
Jennifer Casa-Todd – @jcasatoddThree lessons on Grit and Resilience
My device. My terms. 3 strategies for finding balance.
No Wifi: Pretend it’s 1993
What school and Curling have in common
The risk of digital leadership
Help! My child wants a YouTube channel
Five reasons why banning cellphones is a bad idea
Jessica O’Reilly – @Cambrian_JessSo Why SoTL?
Sidney Helped
Finding Middle Ground
Jessica Outram – @jessicaoutramMoccasin Flowers: A Work-in-Progress
Jim Cash – @cashjimWhy do you want kids to code?
Mathland Actually
Scratch 3.0 is Here!
Joanne Babalis – @joannebabalisSebby Dee turns 3!
Joe Archer – @ArcherJoeExploring Classroom Expectations while using WipeBook Chart Paper
Swimming with my fish! Do it ALL!!
Joel McLean – @jprofNBThe DNA of a leader
“I Don’t Have Time For That”
R.E.A.L. Leadership
Find A Vision
A Positive Climate For A Culture Of Growth
John Allan – @mrpottzSTUDENT INFOGRAPHICS
TESOL’S ELECTRONIC VILLAGE ONLINE
Jonathan So – @MrSoClassroomPerseverance, struggle and a little grit: How running a 53km race relates to Education
If we want our students to (insert word) it starts with us
Judy Redknine, Toby Molouba – @redknine and @tmoloubaIt’s a Matter of Relationships
Karaline Vlahopoulos – @KaralineVla99 Needs and They’re All Student Related
Kelly McLaughlinSchool year start up
Krista McCracken – @kristamccrackenCommunity Archives and Identity
Preserving and Listening to Soundscapes
Kyle Pearce – @MathletePearceHOW TO START THE SCHOOL YEAR OFF RIGHT
Kyleen Gray – @TCHevolutionThe problem(s) with mandatory e-learning…
Why (as a teacher and parent) I Value Standardized Testing
Arguments for Teacher Performance Pay in Ontario
Laura Bottrell – @L_BottrellRethinking End of Year Countdowns
Laura Elliott – @lauraelliottPhDStandardized bodies < Accepting & Celebrating Difference
My ‘Why?’ …
Helping our Girls Reframe Anxiety – it’s not all bad!
Laura Wheeler – @wheeler_lauraLearning in the Loo: Collaborative Kahoot Quiz
Lisa Corbett – @LisaCorbett0261This week we did…something
MATH, NUMBER SENSE & NUMERATION, NUMBER TALKS, PATTERNING & ALGEBRA
Update: Assessment
Slice is of Life: Who Needs Me?
Day 3: Relax
Summer Math:Counting and Subitizing
Slice of Life: Published
A little of this, a little of that
Writer’s Self-Regulations Project
Addition of double digit numbers
Lisa Cranston – @lisacranWe teach students not just content
Beyond Behaviour Charts
Self-Care for Writers
#HandsOffFDK
Lisa Floyd – @lisaannefloydText to Speech and Translation Blocks in Scratch 3.0
Lisa Munro – @LisaMunro11New Journeys
Liv Rondreau – @MissORondeauTHE MEDICINE WHEEL VS MASLOWS’S HIERACHY OF NEEDS
Lynn Thomas – @THOMLYNN101H is for Happy
F is for Frankenstein, Focus & Future Ready
D is for Debate
B is for Brainy, Bold & Beautiful
Q is for Questions and Not Getting Caught in the Quagmire
P is for Patience
O is for Outside the Box
L is for light
K is for Knowledge
Maggie Fay – @maggiefay_Hallway Connections: Autism and Coding via @maggiefay_
Mark Chubb – @MarkChubb3Strategies vs Models
One-Hole Punch Puzzle Templates
The More Strategies, the Better?
Marc Hodgkinson – @Mr_H_TeacherThe 500 – #452 – John Prine – Debut
Martina Fasano – @RokStarTeacherWhy Caring Adults Matter: An Ode To My Alma Mater
Matthew Morris – @callmemrmorrisCell Phone Ban in Classrooms
Does Black History Month still hold meaning in 2019
5 School Ideas for Black History Month
Detentions
I Think My Neighbors Think I’m Selling Dope
Equity Tech’quity
Speaking on and about black male students
Matthew Oldridge – @matthewoldridgeUsing Play to Teach Math
Too Random, Or Not Random Enough: Student Misunderstandings About Probability In Coin Flipping
The Playful Approach to Math
Melanie Lefebvre – @ProfvocateMelWHY FRUSTRATED STUDENTS MADE MY DAY TODAY
An Oscar-esque thank you speech type of blog post
I DON’T USE TEXTBOOKS
Melanie White – @WhiteRoomRadioNurturing Guilt
Merit Centre – @Self_RegA Self-Reg Look At “Preparing Kids”: Is It Time To Change The Conversation?
No Such Thing as a Bad Kid
Michelle Fenn – @toadmummyThe Gender Gap in Technology
Coding with Microbits
Mike Washburn – @misterwashburnWHEN LAST PLACE FEELS LIKE FIRST PLACE
Nancy DrewReckless Abandon!
Neil Anderson – @mediaseeHighlights of the National Association of Media Literacy Educators Conference
Noa Daniel – @noasbobsPitch Day 2019
Elevate your Audience
My River, My Mountain- A Day of Learning with Jennifer Abrams
TTalks for Impact 2019
This Week in Ontario Playlists – Doug Peterson’s P3
Patt Olivieri – @pattolivieriDear Jordan…
Paul Gauchi – @PCMalteseFalconFriday Two Cents: Positive Thoughts For The New Year
Friday Two Cents: Honour Our Past To Understand Our Present
Friday Two Cents: The Language of Art
Comic Strips: School’s Out for Summer
Paul McGuire – @mcguirpWhen your plan is no longer the plan
Tour de Mont Blanc – Day Eight for Climb for Kids
When it comes to mental health in Canada, the gap is still too wide
“What Do You Say When Our Social Institutions Are Under Attack?”
Trolls Creep Into the Education Debate in Ontario
Self-Regulation and Evangelism in Education
Class Sizes Really Matter
Has inclusive education gone too far? – The Globe and Mail debate
Naming and Shaming
Walking in a New Way – the Ottawa Indigenous Walk
History in the Making – Creating Digital History Techbooks
New Beginnings, New Adventures
Your Professional Life is Declining and It’s About Time
Peter Beens – @pbeensSnippets #1
Students’ Favourite Affinity Designer Tutorials
100DaysofCode
Snowbirds
Peter Cameron – @cherandpeteGO! Explore!
Find your inner explorer
A Day (or three) in the Life of this Grosvenor Teacher Fellow
For Water: Learn. Adopt. Protect. Walk.
Our Kids’ Spelling is Atrocious
K Cups Math Resource Page
Water Walking
Ideal PD?
Peter Skillen – @peterskillenDear Ontario Educators,
Ramona Meharg – @RamonaMeharg#ECOOCamp Owen Sound
50th Episode – I Wish I Knew EDU learning
Snow Day Chaos – the Lament is over!
Fill Your Own Cup With Gratitude
#RememberingLeanne
#BIT19 Call for Proposals is OPEN!
Rebecca Chambers – @MrsRChambersAnother Year and The Unlearning Continues
Dreams do come true if you persevere, my vision of an experiential passion based classroom have come true.
Introduction to Unlearning June 23 – August 17
Rob Cannone – @mr_robcannoneIf not now, then when?
Designing the Learning Environment : Why students, pedagogy and critical reflection should come first
On cultivating curiosity in the classroom
Robert Hunking – @yesknownoWhen The Dust Settles?
Rola Tibshirani – @rolatHow To Self Engineer A Learning Community?
When Students Shine!
Rolland Chidiac – @rchidsEsports with Primary Students – Part 1: Jumping In
Esports in Primary – Part 2: Next Steps
Ruthie Sloan – @RoosloanSecret Truths of Empathy While Learning to Advocate
Context is Key
Sarah Lalonde -@sarahlalondeeThirty one days – my social media detox
Sean Monteith – @KPDSB_SchoolsA New Year, Perspective From Experience
It’s “Time”
Sheila Stewart – @sheilaspeakingMinding the Children
Chocolate by Trial and Error
Good Tree Stories
Web Intentions
Shelly Vohra – @raspberryberet3Inquiry, Social Justice, & the SDGs
Digital Breakouts Using Google Forms
ETFO Innovate 2019
Shyama Sunder – @ssunderaswaraFinal Thoughts
STAO Blog – @staoapsoExperiment of The Week – Homemade Projector by Steve Spangler
KEEPING BIRDS SAFE INQUIRY – GRADE 1
5 Things That Make You a Mosquito Magnet – YouTube
Stepan Pruchnicky – @stepanpruchReader’s Theatre = Experiential Learning
Canada’s New Food Guide
Sue Bruyns – @sbruynsHere’s to Paving New Ground
Adjust the Tuning
Proofreader or Instructional Leader?
Cultivating the Culture Code
Sue Dunlop – @Dunlop_SueWhy Summer is a Perfect Time for Reflection
Are You Caught in the Whirlwind?
Just Stop Using “You Guys”
T.J. Hoogsteen – @marexdad21st Century Skills: What Students Need Now or Just More of the Same Bad Ideas?
TDSB Professional Library – @ProfLibraryTDSBNew books: take an eReading March break!
National Indigenous Peoples Day – June 21
Terry Greene – @greeneterrySo Long and Thanks For All of This
The Open Learner Patchbook Went To The PressEd Conference
Hatching a PLN
Reset, Reboot, RemOOC
Thanks Milan – Lessons Learned at #OEGlobal19
Feeling the Ground by Getting Some Air
What’s With All The Sharing?
Dreaming is Free
Where am I in the #ExtendmOOC Conversation?
A New Year, A New Semester
TESLOntario Blog – @TESLontarioWHO HAS THE FINAL SAY ABOUT STUDENT MARKS?
ENCOURAGING REFLECTIVE PRACTICE FOR OURSELVES AND OUR STUDENTS
TESOL’S ELECTRONIC VILLAGE ONLINE
The Beast – @thebeasteduA Guy Walks into a Bar
I Am Right Here
Keys to a Rocket Ship
Recess is as Real Life as it Gets
The Merit Centre – @self_regWords Matter. But Sometimes the Interbrain Matters More.
Tim King – @mechsympStretched Thin
There is no STEM
Good Will: it’s what holds the education system together
Tim King – @tk1ngPrivilege Masquerading as Superiority
Class Caps are a Low Resolution Solution to a High Resolution Problem
Cyber Dissonance: The Struggle for Access, Privacy & Control in our Networked World
2019-20: Persistence and Possibility
Easy Money
Elearning: How to make the inevitable more than a cash grab
Tina Zita – @tina_zitaA Journey with Sketchnotes
Saying Goodbye – A Consistent Journey
A Modern ‘Who Came First’ Debate
Will Gourley – @WillGourleyShoulders of giants
Undercover Boss
Beyond
Be Strong in the Face of Poor Government
Back in the day was better (because now is often unbearable)
The best present is one you can give year round
Zelia Tavares‏ – @zeliamctSkype-A-Thon 2019
EdTechTeam Ontario Summit 2019
Hack the Classroom 2018

This Week in Ontario Edublogs


I just got back from walking the dog and my fingers are frozen. It’s so windy and I didn’t wear heavy enough gloves. But, I guess I can’t complain too much. Last night Lisa Corbett, Beth Lyons, and I exchanged screen captures of local temperatures. I guess we’re just balmy and I’m a wimp.

So, this Friday before the Holiday Break, how about treating yourself to some great blog writing from Ontario Educators?


Skype-A-Thon 2019

Maybe it’s just the circles I run in, but I haven’t read or heard much about Mystery Skypes for a while. It seems like not so long ago, it was the hottest thing in the classroom. Maybe people have abandoned the concept for Flipgrid?

So, it was interesting to read Zélia Tavares’ post about her class’ participation in a Skype-a-Thon event.

Students are inspired by experts as their share words of wisdom and students reflect on comments which they have found very inspiring when recommended to find their own networks and supports around the world to lift themselves and others up.

Imagine having the opportunity to talk with a Vice President of Microsoft! Wow.

Look for links in the post to skypeintheclassroom.com and skypeascientist.com.

This could be the tip of the iceberg. If you could have anyone Skype into your classroom for a visit, who would it be? Often, all you have to do is ask. I remember coming in via remote to a Leslie Boerkamp class.


The Grade 3 ‘Travelling Genius Bar’

From Jay Dubois’ recent blog post, a new word for me …

ADE-worthy

The ADE program has been around for a number of years so I imagine that it is indeed difficult to come up with a new project and description that would stand out from what’s already been done.

1:1 iPad Classroom? Been there, done that, kids got t-shirts

But Jay puts a worthy twist to the concept. His students become geniuses and take their expertise on the road to any class in the rest of the school that wants a piece of the iPad action.

Now that’s unique and interesting. There’s a video of the process in the blog post stored on Google Drive. I hope that doesn’t cause problems.


Reconnecting with my cultural roots

I still have to copy/paste Diana Maliszewski’s name when I make reference to her in a post! Sorry, Diana.

Diana really does get this open stuff though and there doesn’t come a post from her that I don’t learn something new. In this case, it’s sharing that part of her heritage comes from Guyana and the West Indies. I had no idea.

She’s fortunate to still have her parents as part of her life and Diana shares a story about making garlic pork. Now, by themselves, they can be two of my favourite foods and I suspect that all sausage comes flavoured with garlic. But, I’ll confess that I’ve never had the need to drink gin out of necessity. Barring access to Diana’s intellectual property, I checked out the recipe online.

http://www.caribbeanchoice.com/recipes/recipe.asp?recipe=318

Let stand for 1-4 days? Hmmm.

The second part of her heritage moment involves going to a charity luncheon. I can understand myself being intimidated by a new group but never thought that the Diana I know would! So, I found that interesting.

Kudos to Diana for making the effort to remain connected to her heritage and her parents at this time of the year.


Naming and Shaming

Just this week, we’ve seen the incident south of the border as a consequence for a politician and Paul McGuire does make reference to that.

This is really something terrible to watch. House Republican leaders are actually saying what Donald Trump does in his attempts to bribe the leader of Ukraine is OK because, well, he didn’t go through with it. He got caught, so no bribe happened.

The bulk of this post though, is focused on the formal naming and shaming done by the Minister of Education. Has this become the way of politics now? Instead of civil discourse, we just ignore facts and shoot from the hip? As Paul notes, many of the big claims, i.e. eLearning for everyone, have been been refuted.

When your minister knowingly doesn’t tell the truth. When he tries to use old-style bully techniques, when he apes the tactics of Republicans south of the border we have to realize that we are playing by a different set of rules.

I hope that the statements and posturizing are for the news media and that common sense prevails in negotiations.


Thanks Milan – Lessons Learned at #OEGlobal19

What an opportunity for Terry Greene. He got to attend the Open Education Global Conference in Milan.

In this post, he offers 10 lessons.

#1 is great – take a chance and maybe it will work out.

#7 what an incredible looking lecture hall

#8 and warning, this can be a time suck but a time suck in a good way

and finally

#6 is something that we’ve learned from international hockey friendship trips. Other people love Canadian stuff. I find that demonstrating Canadian currency is always a crowd pleaser.

All 10 are great to read, muse about, and make sure that you follow the links.


voicEd Radio

The podcast version of our live TWIOE show featuring these posts is available:

https://www.spreaker.com/episode/20854909

Bonus Coverage

The risk of digital leadership

I like the message that’s explicitly stated in this post from Jennifer Casa-Todd. The post revolves around a bullying situation and she pulls out all the tried and true tools as recommendations for how to handle things.

I think, though, that there is another message that comes across in the suggestions that Jennifer offers. All of them are good but the message that I heard was try this, try that, try this, and don’t give up. Somewhere there is a solution.

And, if you don’t have the correct answer, do what the parent did. Turn to someone with more experience – in this case it was Jennifer. And, if you’re that “Jennifer” and you don’t have all the answers, don’t be hesitant to ask others.

Together we’re better.


An Interview with Leigh Cassell

And, in case you missed it, yesterday I posted an interview with Leigh Cassell. If you don’t know of Leigh, you may know of the Digital Human Library.

Leigh was good enough to take the time to answer a few of my questions for the interview. I learned more about this amazing person and the projects that she has her finger on. Give it a read and I’m sure that you’ll learn more and will be inspired.


I know that it’s a Friday and everyone is ready to recharge over the next little bit. I’d like to take the opportunity to wish you a safe and relaxing holidays. It’s my intention to keep learning and blogging but there might be a day or two break in there somewhere.

The podcast This Week in Ontario Edublogs won’t be recorded next week. After all, Wednesday is Christmas Day and Stephen and I have family. Look for something special in the following week though. Keep blogging yourself and let me know what you’re writing.

Make sure that you’re following these great Ontario Edubloggers.

  • @zeliamct
  • @Jay__Dubois
  • @MzMollyTL
  • @mcguirp
  • @greeneterry
  • @jcasatodd
  • @dHL_edu
  • @LeighCassell

This post comes from:

https://dougpete.wordpress.com

If you read it anywhere else, it’s not the original.

This Week in Ontario Edublogs


Didn’t we just have a Friday the 13th? But what a beautiful moon! The nice thing about full moons in the winter is that the skies seem so much clearer and the moon so much bigger and crisper.

It’s time to share another week’s worth of reading and posting from around the province from Ontario Edubloggers. As always, some great writing to inspire thinking for you.


It’s a Matter of Relationships

I’m glad to add this blog to my collection. As I said on the voicEd Radio show, this could have been titled “A union stewart and a school principal walk into a coffee shop”. These people would be Judy Redknine and Toby Molouba.

Because they did. It’s an interesting combination given what’s happening in education and, quite honestly, something that should be seen in more places. There are most certainly lots of things to think about in education – when this post was written the current actions were only visible on the horizon.

I love this quote from the blog post.

“When your child walks into the room, does your face light up?” Our belief is that adults, like children, need this same light.  The heart of the matter is it is about our humanity.  Relationships truly matter.

Humanity and decency are things that I would suggest can be taken for granted if left alone. I really appreciate the message of collegiality that comes through in this post. Relationships are number 1. It’s a lesson for all of us. And yes, adults need to see the same light.

I wonder if the faces light up when the two sides enter the room for a round of collective bargaining. Of course they don’t. Like playing poker, you don’t want to show your hand.

But imagine if they did. Would that lead to an earlier conflict resolution?


What do trees have to do with well-being? (Trees Part Two)

A while back, I read Part One of Anne-Marie Kee’s thoughts about trees, in particular as they apply to Lakefield College School.

This is an interesting followup as she reflects on trees and how they grow, survive, and thrive. In particular, she shares some interesting observations about community and deep or not-so-deep roots in the section dealing with myths.

Towards the end, she turns to how it is so similar to today’s teenagers. Trees help each other grow and so do teenagers. In fact, by giving them the opportunity to take on more responsibility in truly meaningful ways, you do help the process. Not surprisingly, she makes the important connection to mental health and well-being.

I know that we all think we do that. Maybe it’s time to take a second look and really focus on the “meaningful”.


Shoulders of giants

Will Gourley really grounded me with his observations about giants. Perhaps because my use with computer technology, a new field in the big scheme of things, I can name and appreciate the giants in the field.

With a career in education, I can think back to the giants who I looked up to professionally. Egotistically, I remember my first days in the classroom just knowing that I was going to be this stand-out educator and change the world all on my own.

And you know what? What they told us at the Faculty was true. You could close your classroom door and nobody notices or cares!

Then, either the first Thursday or the second, there was a big package in my mailbox. It was an updated collective agreement. As a new teacher, I got the entire agreement and then the 1 or 2 page summary of changes from the recent rounds of negotiations. I was blown away to realize that I had received a raise!

That weekend, I sat down and read the agreement from cover to cover. On Monday morning, I sat down with our OSSTF rep and had a bunch of questions. I recall many being “what happened before this was in the agreement”. It was then that I got a true appreciation for the work that had gone into things over the years.

The value of being an OSSTF member continued to grow and impress me over the years. I served as our school PD rep and CBC rep for a few years and every step led to an increasing appreciation for the work that was done. When OSSTF started to provide quality professional learning, I was over the top.

I know that there are tough times during negotiations but just thinking about where you are now and how you get there is important. In a few years, those leading now will be the shoulders that others are standing on.


Hour of Code Is Coming…

Of course, I had to share this post from Arianna Lambert. Computer Science Education Week is near and dear to my heart and the Hour of Code may be the most visible thing to most. I wrote a bit this week about things that can be done with the micro:bit..

I deliberately moved her post to this week, marking the end of the Hour of Code. Why?

An hour of anything doesn’t make a significant difference. The Hour of Code should never be considered a check box to be marked done. It should be the inspiration and insight that lets you see where coding fits into the big scheme of things. It is modern. It is important. It is intimidating.

If you’ve ever taken a computer science course, you know that seldom do you get things right the first time. But every failure leads to an insight that you have for the next problem that you tackle. Student and teacher can truly become co-learners here. Why not take advantage of it?

Included in Arianna’s post is a presentation that she uses and a very nice collection of links that you can’t possibly get through in an hour. And, I would suggest that’s the point.

I know what I’ve been doing all week and plan to continue into the weekend.


My Look At The Holidays: What Are Your Stories?

I cringed when I read the title of Aviva Dunsiger’s post. After all, she had kind of dissed my post about Advent calendars.

This post was different though.

There are lots of pictures she shares about classroom activities so there is a holiday thing happening in her classroom. Check out the menorah made from water bottles.

She shifts gears a bit and tells a story of her youth. She grew up Jewish and then a second marriage gave her the Christmas experience. It’s very open and a nice sharing of her experiences. It was a side of Aviva that I’d never seen before. I appreciated it.

You’ll smile at the story of her grandmother. We all have/had a wee granny in our lives, haven’t we?


The podcast version of our live TWIOE show featuring these posts is available here.

Bonus Posts

Easy Money

I hope that Tim King and I are still friends after my comments on his post. It’s not that it’s a bad post. It’s actually very factual and outlines for any that read it teacher salaries, qualifications, benefits, etc. They’re done in Tim’s context with Upper Grand and that’s OK. With the way things are done now in the province, it’s probably pretty standard. There’s enough statistics and insight there to choke a horse. (sorry, but I grew up in a rural community)

What bothers me is that teachers somehow have to defend themselves for all that has been achieved through collective bargaining. Why can’t it just be said?

Damnit, I’m a teacher! This is what I’ve chosen to be in life; I worked hard to get here; my aspiration is to make the world better by educating those in my charge. Period. Nothing more needs to be said.

What other profession has to defend its existence every time a contract comes up for renewal? And teachers are such easy targets. We’ve all had that one teacher that we didn’t like; some people like to project that across the entire profession.

Part of Tim’s inspiration for the posts comes from the venom of “conservative-leaning reporters”. I think that may be a bit of a concession. The venom, from what I see, comes from opinion piece writers. Unlike reporters that do research, opinion pieces are based on supporting a particular viewpoint.

But, let’s go with reporter. According to Glassdoor, the average base pay in Canada is $59,000/year. That would put them about the fifth year of Category 2 in Tim’s board. For that money, they write a missive a number of times a week for their employer, attach perhaps a stock image and call it an article. The point is to feed a particular message. A truly investigative reporting would put them in a classroom for a week to really get a sense of the value educators give for their compensation. But you’d never see that.

While I know that these messages really upset educators, they should always be taken in context and understood for what they really are.

BTW, it’s not lost on me that these reporters make about $59,000 a year more than this humble blog author. I don’t even take weekends off. Who is the dummy here?


The 500 – #452 – John Prine – Debut

This is a cool concept from Marc Hodgkinson. He says

I was inspired by a podcast called The 500 hosted by Los Angeles-based comedian Josh Adam Meyers. His goal, and mine, is to explore Rolling Stone’s 2012 edition of The 500 Greatest Albums of All Time.

What an ambitious project.

What stood out to me from this post was this new (to me, anyway) musician. I read Marc’s post and then headed over to YouTube for more. Wow, when Robert Plant names a favourite song of yours …


I hope that you can find the time to click through and read the original posts. There’s some really wonderful reading to be done here.

Then, make sure that you’re following these educators on Twitter.

  • @redknine
  • @tmolouba
  • @AMKeeLCS
  • @WillGourley
  • @MsALambert
  • @avivaloca
  • @tk1ng
  • @Mr_H_Teacher

This post comes from:

https://dougpete.wordpress.com

If you read it anywhere else, it’s not the original.

This Week in Ontario Edublogs


Just like that, we’re into December. I’ve often wondered if the holiday seasons might get people away from their keyboards. That may be yet to come but, for now, there’s some great content from Ontario Edubloggers. Here’s a bit of what I read this week.


Our Kids’ Spelling is Atrocious.

As long as there have been schools and teachers, there have been red pens and circles surrounding spelling mistakes. Look it up. (well, you don’t have to really)

I found this post from Peter Cameron so interesting. It’s a transcript of a conversation between he and a parent who has a concern and was looking for an app or other solution to help the cause.

Peter does give some educational suggestions and guidance.

Upon further reflection, I looked at myself. I’ve always considered myself a fairly good speller. And yes, I suffered through those Friday morning dictation tests in elementary school. I hated them at the time but can now appreciate them for what they are worth. I’ve memorized the words, the rules, the exceptions to the rules, … I was not hooked on phonics.

And then I go onto Social Media and see misspellings and misuse so often, I start to question myself. Is this the beginning of the end of literacy for me?

In the meantime, thank goodness for the squiggly red line under the word misspellings above (actually at the time I typed it, it was mispellings) to keep me on the literacy straight and narrow.


Baby It’s Cold Outside: The Saga of a Song

There was no date on this post on the Association for Media Literacy website. I thought it might be recent and timely for the season but I reached out to one of the authors, Diana Maliszewski to be sure.

In fact, it was about a year old and part of a commitment to post 40 blog posts along with Neil Andersen. After a bit of a back and forth and encouragement with Diana, I decided to include it on the Wednesday podcast and on this post.

In reading, I learned so much more about the song besides the fact that it appeared in an old movie. Lots of media literacy implications (which explains why it’s on this blog) and a real comparison between society and media, then and now. There was a reminder that the song was banned on the CBC for a time and so much more. It’s a really good read and the authors encourage it to be used in the classroom.

I also found that Lady Gaga had covered the song.

And so many others. If the original was controversial, then how would the more modern covers be received?


From Compliance to Commitment Takes Personal Accountability: The Aspirational Nature of Equity Work

With a title like that, you just know that there’s going to be a long post to follow…

And Debbie Donsky doesn’t disappoint!

If you’re looking for something to challenge the way that we do things in education, this is a great motivator.

I mean, we’ve all done it. You get the memo that there will be an assembly on a topic or that homerooms will be held so that you can lead a special session with your students on a timely topic. I’m thinking bullying here.

As a dutiful educator, you do it. You’re accountable to do it. At what level of buy-in do you actually have though?

That’s where Debbie left me in the dust when she addresses rules and policies and applies the concept of aspiration to the situation. After a read, and you’ll read it way more than once, I think you’ll find yourself questioning a number of things. That’s a good thing and something that good writing should do.

The richness doesn’t stop with Debbie’s content. There are lots of connections made and links to external resources. She’s really done her homework in preparation for this post.


Thinking about Feedback

I almost didn’t read this post from Helen DeWaard because I made the assumption that it was going to be all about red pens, circle, and comments to students. Goodness knows that we’ve addressed that so many times.

But, no, that wasn’t the point here and why I felt so good about indeed reading the post.

Helen’s focus is on the other side of the coin.

What do YOU do when you receive feedback?

She embeds this graphic that will take a bit of time to really work through. But it’s worth it.

Think about how you receive feedback. We get it all the time. Sure, there’s the inspection piece from administrators but we get it from students with every lesson. It’s just a matter of really understanding it.

I remember a story attributed to B.F. Skinner from a Psychology of Teaching course where students ended up making a teacher work from a corner because of their actions. Every time the teacher moved towards the corner, the students all smiled and nodded like they were learning. Move away and the students dropped interest. The truth value of the story is in dispute but it is a good story nonetheless.

Feedback is indeed powerful. One of the best things I ever did for myself was to take a course on Peer Coaching and then found a partner who really understood and we worked together so well coaching each other. We still do today.


One-Hole Punch Puzzle Templates

I’m almost positive that I’ve done this mathematical activity described in this post from Mark Chubb. It involves paper and a paper punch. It might even have been as an ice breaker at a workshop. It might have been an online application that didn’t require physical paper or punch at all. It’s a really worthwhile challenge though.

If all you want is the activity, go to Mark’s post and skip to about halfway through it where he describes the activity.

But, if you do that, you’ll miss the important part at the beginning of the post and the why to the reason why you’d want to do this with your class. And, I would do it with everyone, either singly or in groups for the discussion value.

It’s a great activity to use those papers that are in your recycle box. There really is no need for brand new paper to do this activity.


History in the Making – Creating Digital History Techbooks

Paul McGuire had reached out to share with me this culminating project that he called “History in the Making”.

The last assignment we worked on was called History in the Making. I had this idea that it would be really cool for students to develop a digital textbook along the lines of what Discovery Education has created for math, science and social studies.

He was particularly proud of one project dealing with The Oka Crisis. He wanted me to take a look at it for my thoughts. In the post, he shares a couple of others that he thought were exemplary.

Everything seems to be created in a Google Site under the University of Ottawa’s umbrella. I hope that the students also make a copy in their own personal space for use when they graduate.

Some of the things that sprung to my mind while wandering around the resources here.

  • are other Faculty of Education professors encouraging publishing like this?
  • hopefully, they don’t land a job where Google Sites are blocked! (There are alternatives in that case…)
  • particularly in social studies with our new learnings, digital techbooks have the chance of being more relevant and up to date than other resources that might be available
  • certainly resources like this added to a digital professional portfolio would be impressive for a job interview
  • the concept of open sharing of resources is so powerful. It makes school districts that hide behind login/passwords seem so dated

I’m impressed with Paul’s forward thinking and I hope that his students appreciate both the explicit and the not-so-explicit lessons that can be had from this activity.


Thirty one days – my social media detox

If you’ve been missing Sarah Lalonde online, this post explains it all. She has done a personal social media detox.

All the details of her process are found in this post. It wasn’t all just an easy exercise. There were challenges.

Under the category of TMI, she also shares how and where she cheated…

And to address boredom…

One thing I found the most difficult was the “dead time”. For example: waiting in car, in line at the grocery store, waiting for an appointment…). My brain felt like it needed to be entertained. Was I scared to face my thoughts? Why did I need to feel busy? Why couldn’t I just sit there waiting and doing nothing? This is something I had to work on. 

She even extends the concept to students.

I think the big learning here is in perspective. Social Media is something that can be as big or as minimalist as you want it to be. I can’t see one answer that fits everything.

Regardless, it was interesting reliving the experience with her.


I hope that you enjoy these posts as much as I did. Please take a moment to click through and send some social media cred to these bloggers. If you’re a blogger and not in my Livebinder, please consider adding yourself so that I know about you.

Then, make sure you’re following these great bloggers on Twitter.

  • @cherandpete
  • @MzMollyTL
  • @mediasee
  • @A_M_L_
  • @DebbieDonsky
  • @hj_dewaard
  • @MarkChubb3
  • @mcguirp
  • @sarahlalondee

This post originally appeared on…

https://dougpete.wordpress.com

If you read it anywhere else, it’s not the original.

This Week in Ontario Edublogs


Happy Black Friday, if you observe. There’s nothing discounted about the great posts coming from Ontario Edubloggers. You get full value for your reading.


Good Tree Stories

This week starts off with a post from Sheila Stewart. Maybe it’s a little less “education” than normal but it might make you look at your Christmas tree in a different way. She was inspired by a story about Halifax donating a tree to Boston which led her to thinking about trees in Kenora.

It got me thinking about Christmas trees in my life. As a kid growing up, it was always down to the trees sold by the Kinsmen and Kinettes. The tree had to be the perfect height with the perfect amount of symmetry. Lots of mathematics to consider when you’re freezing…

In our town, there’s always a big show as our natural tree is lit. The mayor, town crier, shooting of the town cannon, fireworks, hot chocolate, and of course the RiverLights.

These days, we’ve found the perfect solution for our rec room – an artificial tree which is absolutely symmetric. It makes the perfect backdrop for our Christmas picture.


If not now, then when?

From Rob Cannone, the best wisdom for professional learning.

With students, they learn something and immediately put it into practice. Can you imagine the disaster if you taught something and then didn’t get into projects, assessments, or any of that good stuff until a month or two later?

So, why as teachers, do you attend professional learning events and then not implement things right away?

Rob notes some steps that he feels should be done.

  • One thing at a time
  • Open the box
  • Share learning with others
  • Practice makes progress (accept it won’t be perfect)

His third point is even more important in this day and age. There was a time when you might learning something and then share it with a colleague in your school. With social media and its power, your best new learning partner just might be online.


Q is for Questions and Not Getting Caught in the Quagmire

From Lynn Thomas, another post that I thought moved nicely from kids to yourself in the argument that she builds.

We all remember our days at the Faculty of Education and the advice that we got about questioning – never ask a question that can be answered with a “Yes” or “No”. Aim for something deeper and richer so that the student can provide evidence of learning.

Then, for me, the post took a turn.

When we ask questions of ourselves, do we aim for the richer questions or are we happy being able to respond “Yes” or “No” or ticked off on a to-do list? Or, updated to 2019, anything that can be answered quickly by a search engine.

Other than the fact that Quagmire also starts with a “Q”, I like her logic of avoiding getting stuck.


KEEPING BIRDS SAFE INQUIRY – GRADE 1

From the STAO blog, something a little different from Laura Collins. It’s actually a unit of study about birds and safety.

We have a couple of bird feeders in the back yard. We know that you have to reliably fill the feeder. We’ve learned about ways to avoid birds flying into windows. We’ve learned how to keep the squirrels off the pole. There’s so much more in this unit including the CN Tower.

And we get so excited to see Blue Jay, Cardinals, Woodpeckers. Squirrels, not so much.

There’s a real wealth of activities, literature, and learning opportunities here. Wow!

Most definitely shareworthy.


Guided Reading with Adolescent Readers

I thought that I was going to be like a fish out of water with the post from Deborah McCallum. After all, I didn’t teach reading. That’s for the younger years; by the time we got them in secondary school, they should know how to read, right?

But, are they all really accomplished readers?

Deborah points to a lack of extensive research in this area. In our voicEd Radio show, Stephen shared some of the challenges that he had as an adolescent reader. Do we make the assumption that because they’re older, they just are all natural readers or have at least mastered the skill successfully?

Deborah offers a few things to think about. Good for beginning readers but certainly worth keeping in mind for the older ones.

  • Low knowledge of vocabulary
  • Inadequate word recognition strategies
  • Lack of schemata or background knowledge to interpret text
  • Poor use of strategies to comprehend what they are reading

HTML/CSS with Canada Learning Code

My neck snapped when I read the title to this post from Alanna King. Then, I thought, we’ll turn her into a programming geek yet.

In a previous post, she mentioned how he was excited about learning about design and interface but now she’s rolled up her sleeves and is digging into code.

Her description of the activity matches the activities that we used to set up in our “Women in Technology” workshops for Grade 7/8 girls. There is something magical about looking behind the scenes to see exactly what’s going one. You might remember the inspirational “a pixel here, a pixel there”.

These days, there isn’t a huge need to be able to code many things from scratch since we have such great, purposeful editors to work with. And yet, there is the odd time when you need to look behind the scenes because something isn’t working just right. I can’t imagine how long it would take to write a blog post without an editor.

But, I still maintain, that’s not the ultimate goal. To be sure, the power behind programming and coding is knowing that you can absolutely be in charge of that page, that site, that device, that electronic thingy. Once you know, realise, and understand that, you can’t be pushed around by a wannabe or a particular device.

Learn and take charge – Alanna’s on a wonderful trip.


Equity Tech’quity

There’s real frustration in this post from Matthew Morris.

the kids in my classroom were in the middle of completing their short stories and the laptops they had been writing short stories on were booked – for the entire week. 

In his school, the supply doesn’t meet demand when it comes to technology and that’s the TLDR;

It’s the sort of thing that legitimately turns teachers off using technology in a meaningful, reliable way. Imagine any subject area where you can only do what you need to do every other Thursday if you remember to book things.

“We are teaching students born in the 21st century. We need to meet them on their plane.” Round of applause.

How many times have we heard this? Some self-important speaker on the speaking route commanding a fee that could otherwise have bought maybe 10 Chromebooks. Or, in Matthew’s case looking at a neighbouring board where a commitment to the concept has resulted in every student being given a device. I can understand the frustration.

Somewhere along the line, the people who allocate the dollars have to decide whether they’re prepared to fund a significant program or be happy with periodic low-level activities.


Thanks, once again, to these wonderful Ontario educators for blogging and sharing their thoughts. Please take the time to click through and read these posts in their entirety. And, make a blogger happy – leave them a comment.

Then, follow them on Twitter.

  • @SheilaSpeaking
  • @mr_robcannone
  • @THOMLYNN101
  • @staoapso
  • @Bigideasinedu
  • @banana29
  • @callmemrmorris

This post originally appeared on:

https://dougpete.wordpress.com

If you read it anywhere else, it’s not the original.