Leading School Operations

Learning with others in many different ways is what brings about growth and reflection titlethat is not only powerful, it is energizing.  It is my privilege and honour to spend time learning alongside with aspiring leaders in formal and informal ways.  One formal way is as an instructor for OPC’s Principal’s Qualification Program.  This past weekend, we spent time learning about School Operations.  The focus was to understand the legislation and policies that are in place that impact how a school runs.  Sound exciting?  Your initial response may be “no”. Sounds straight-forward but to the contrary it is very complex. Digging deeper and looking at school operations through the lens of a leader makes one realize that it’s about mindset, influence and resiliency.

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The Power of Telling Stories

Be sure to listen to them.  Be sure to read them.  Be sure to write them.  Be sure to draw them.  Be sure to tell them.  Stories.  Stories matter.  The more the better.  

As an educator, I often reflect on how important sharing our stories may help others.  Students may see us in a different light and learn from us in ways that go beyond knowing us as an educator.  Colleagues see us in ways that acknowledge who we are as people. Think about it.  Our stories not only define us, they bring us closer together as humans.   Continue reading

Twitter: True or False?

Twitter.  It’s a social media tool used by millions daily for many different reasons. No question, twitter is powerful.

When I ask ASPS students (grade 7 and 8)  how and when they use twitter their responses are most often connected to following famous people or checking out what is being said around possibly a particular event.  I’m not sure they see it a tool that can help them learn and network with others in the world. Continue reading

#OTRK12 Follow Up: Professional Learning

On Thursday April 23rd at #OTRK12, I was very fortunate to spend an hour of time with educators from all over Ontario discussing professional learning.

Thanks to @Tina_Zita for the poster describing my session.  The focus was sharing about how leaders balance and blend online and onground ways of learning. Finding the sweet spot!

Tina Poster OTRK12

What an honour and privilege to share parts of my journey in how I learn and grow with my staff at @AncasterSrPS. Continue reading

#OTRK12 Session & Sharing Outline

OTRK12.ca | On The Rise K-12: Enhancing Digital Learning begins tomorrow!

I am honoured to be facilitating a learning session entitled ” Professional Learning: Onground + Online = Super Visibility ”  and it’s for school and system leaders.

Here’s my session description:  
How do you find the sweet spot?  How do you blend professional learning – onground and online – to create a powerful collaborative learning culture among educators?  What works?  Why does it work? How do you know when it is working?  How do you start and continue building momentum? Let’s reflect on how what we do as leaders matters most of all.  It’s more than just modelling–being a connected learner who practices each and every day–is what we mean by Super Visibility.

Come discuss, share your ideas and bring tough questions on how technology enabled learning,  with a ‘no opt out – engage everybody’ focus, is possible.  In fact, it’s what we need most of all in thecontext of learning and teaching today.

Opt In Tweet

As Brandon Grasley mentions in his blogpost, Session Preparation for #ORTK12, the session is only an hour long.  Yes.  That’s right. So…

Here’s what I’m proposing as a guiding outline for us:
1.  Hellos
2.  Share some professional learning models – onground and online  – it’s always a blend
3.  From the stance as leader, list the questions you have about tech-enabled professional learning
4.  Begin to list together how to create a “no opt out – engage everybody focus” <— sharing stories
5.  Discuss why your practice matters most of all as a connected learner
6.  Wonder individually & as a group what’s the next best move in y(our) learning & make a plan
7.  Breathe (as Brandon suggests) and sustain our learning beyond this valuable f2f time

This is an ambitious and packed outline.  We’ll decide together how to keep it real. Looking forward to our time together.  See you soon!

Face-to-Face Huddle, On Safari, Open Discussion @AncasterSrPS

Last week for two days, ASPS students and staff hosted E-Learning Contacts from Northern Ontario. Often referred to as eLCs, these are educators whose focus is to support Ontario students with digital learning opportunities.  As well, learning alongside with us were Education Officers from the Ministry of Education.

My Wondering:  
How to organize our time together so that our visitors would really understand our learning community and our collaborative culture? Continue reading

My One Word For 2015

Give.  It’s that simple.

Give One word 2015

Giving in the sense of sharing what cannot be seen but only can be felt.

Give kindness.  Give time.  Give consideration.  Give love.  Give praise. Give patience.  Give humour.  Give positivity. Give focus.  Give empathy.  Give inspiration.

Give to others. What do other need from me?
Give to myself.   What do I need from myself?

And lastly, whatever is the give is, be sure it is given openly and generously.
So there, you have it, my word for 2015.  Give.  It’s that simple.

Meme goes on…la, de, da, de, de

And the meme goes on. Sue Dunlop, a colleague and friend invited me to join in.  This is a neat way to get to know each other by sharing some facts about yourself and reaching out to others to do the same.  And as Dean Shareski comments, “it’s just an excuse to write, which is never a bad thing.”

This has been the nudge I need. Thanks Sue and many others!  Royan Lee shares that “being a bit allergic to [their] blog dashboards” can happen for some of us.  I’m going to really make it a priority to bring my blog back.  Bringing it back in a way that is meaningful for me and with any luck meaningful for others.  Donna Fry’s post captures nicely what should matter when we write.  It is so important to find the joy in writing down our thoughts and sharing them out there openly. Continue reading