Tag Archives: write

Ten Minutes of Connecting: Day 23 – Yes, It’s Time to Start Your Own Blog!

Much of the work we have done so far in getting connected has been about where to find information on the web, and how to share the valuable information with others.

Shared by Dafyd Jones under a Creative Commons Attribution - Non-Commercial - Share-Alike License.
Shared by Dafyd Jones under a Creative Commons Attribution – Non-Commercial – Share-Alike License.

But what if nobody created any of the resources you are sharing?

Your presence online is valuable because others are creating and sharing with you.  You are a valuable part of your own PLN.  Creating and sharing back with your colleagues is an important part of the process, and a valuable aspect of your own professional learning.

Today we start supporting you in the process of creating your own blog.

Shared under a Creative Commons Attribution - Non-Commercial - Share-Alike License by Dekuwa.
Shared under a Creative Commons Attribution – Non-Commercial – Share-Alike License by Dekuwa.

You can’t create a blog in ten minutes, so we have broken the process down into a series of easy steps.  Our goal is to have your blog live online before the end of this 30-day series.

Are you ready?

First, what do we mean by the word “blog”? We need to have a shared understanding of what a blog is.

Edublogs, one of many possible platforms for your blog, has created this instructional video that will give you the basics of what a blog is in under four minutes!

The next step in setting up your own blog is making a decision about what platform you will use to host your blog.  Many educators use one platform for student blogs and a different platform for their personal blog.  How should you decide?

Edublogs recently did a survey of bloggers, asking about their platform of choice.  Reading their comments might help you with your decision.

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Of course, asking your PLN on Twitter what platform they use and why is an awesome use of your Professional Learning Network to support you in your work.

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If your friends are already blogging, ask them what they use and why.

Once you have made your decision, it’s easy to sign up for a free blog.

(OSSEMOOC is currently using a WordPress.com site, and as we work through the components of blogs this week, we will be using examples from our own WordPress.com site.  If you are really new to Web 2.0 tools, you may want to start with a WordPress.com blog and follow our tutorials.  Once you understand the fundamentals, you can switch to any hosting site of your choice.)

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If you are already a blogger, what tips can you offer new bloggers?

Resources:

Personal Blogging – a fantastic step-by-step guide by Edublog’s Sue Waters.

 

 

Ten Minutes of Connecting: Day 22 – Making Thinking Visible Through Blogging

As we move into the last week of our “10 minutes of Connecting” series, we continue on from our thinking about Collecting – Connecting – Curating – Collaborating to Creating and Sharing.

One of the easiest ways to own your own creative digital space is to start your own blog.

Shared under a Creative Commons attribution - non-commercial - Share-alike license by Konrad Glogowski
Shared under a Creative Commons attribution – non-commercial – Share-alike license by Konrad Glogowski

You have already started your “blogging” work by contributing to the “microblog” Twitter.  When 140 characters isn’t enough, you need to create your own space to share your thinking and learning.

There are many reasons to start your own blog.  Today we are considering the purpose of blogs, and how they can help us in our own learning.

Many leaders start blogs as a way to help publicize and share the great work being done at their school.

Others make their personal growth plan visible to their school community.

Shared under a Creative Commons Attribution License by Christian Schnettelker
Shared under a Creative Commons Attribution License by Christian Schnettelker

A blog can be a place to share resources and learning plans for a group of learners.

Some leaders use their blog as a professional portfolio, demonstrating the work they do in each area of the leadership framework.

Take some time today to look at the blogs posted in the margins of this page.  This time, look for the purpose of the blog.

How can blogging help you in your work as a lead learner?

Shared under a Creative Commons Attribution - Non-commercial - Share-alike license by Giulia Forsythe
Shared under a Creative Commons Attribution – Non-commercial – Share-alike license by Giulia Forsythe

Resources:

Blogging Resources for Teachers: Sue Waters

Blogging With Your Students: Langwitches Blog

Why Teachers Should Have Blogs: George Couros

The Need for Courageous Leadership: George Couros

Documenting for Learning:  Langwitches Blog

Visible Thinking Routines for Bloggers: Langwitches Blog

How to Grow a Blog – Konrad Glogowski

 

30 Days of Learning in Ontario: What Did We Learn Today?

As the 30 Days of Learning in Ontario OSSEMOOC project comes to a close, we want to thank, and congratulate, all of the educators who took the opportunity to share their learning.  For some, it was their very first time posting their thinking in the blog format.  We thank you for taking the time to let others learn from you.  We hope that you will continue to share your learning and connect with others doing the same.

Thank you as well to everyone who took the time to comment on the blog.  You shared your response and your feedback, and kept the thinking and conversations going.

Special thanks to Deb McCallum for creating a flipboard magazine with the content here: https://flipboard.com/section/ossemooc-b4GnnY

One of our goals in OSSEMOOC is to have people connect and then create, to go off and learn and share, to sustain those connections and that learning.  We were excited to see Deborah McCallum’s efforts to collate the 30 Days of Learning in a new format.

 

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Collaborative blogs give ownership to a group rather than an individual.  As co-owners, we all anticipate the next learning.  We are motivated to comment and continue the conversation as we are invested in this community of learners.  Collaborative blogs encourage new thinking, invite new participants, expand our world and our learning.  They give us a focus for reading and sharing.

We learn by watching others.  We teach by modelling the practices we value.  Collaborative blogging allows us to model the action of making thinking visible.

We all have a story to tell, and we learn from each other. Together we are stronger and wiser. Connected learning takes many forms: observing, reading, asking, reflecting, writing, speaking, audio, video and collaborating. Connected learning and leading is a participatory culture. It takes time, time to jump in, time to create new routines and time to build comfort. Courage is needed to put yourself “out there” and find your voice. It is worth the risk to gain insight, broader perspectives and recognize that “the smartest person in the room is the room”.

In our technology enabled learning environments, connected students need connected teachers and leaders. As educators, I believe each of us owns nurturing those around us and role modelling. As pointed out in one of the blog posts, value encouragement and supporting each other with “just right” feedback is important for adult learners too.

Each of the 30 days of learning bloggers has taken the leap of faith, put themselves “out there” to share their reflections and ideas. Congratulations to all for openly participating in the collaborative learning process.

We often wonder why it is so hard to change thinking in education, to bring people into the world of connected learning.  We learned from Tim’s comment that perhaps focusing on the changing world, while validating the work that has been done, is a key component of making this change happen.

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This comment on Stacey Wallwin’s blog helped to reinforce the understanding that what you do has impact that you cannot always see.  Comments like this are the sustenance we all need to keep doing our work to Change the World #CTW

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It’s hard to hit publish.  But opportunity can be fleeting.  Don’t be afraid to share.

Be more dog and grab the frisbee when it comes your way.  Carpe diem!

Mark Carbone and Donna Fry

OSAPAC Co-Leads for #OSSEMOOC.  

Change The World #CTW 

 

30 Days of Learning in Ontario:

The Lead Learners Who Modelled the Importance of Sharing Learning and Thinking

Our model pre-April blogger: Rodd Lucier @thecleversheep

1 Mark Carbone @markwcarbone

2 Cathy Beach @beachcat11

3 Brandon Grasley @bgrasley

4 Aviva Dusinger @avivaloca

5 Heather Theijsmeir @HTheijsmeijer

6 Jonathan So @mrsoclassroom

7 Louise Robitaille @robitaille2011

8 Julie Balen @jacbalen

9 Jac Calder @jaccalder

10 Scott Monahan @monahan_scott

11 Emily Fitzpatrick@ugdsb_missfitz

12 Deborah McCallum @bigideasinedu

13 Paul McGuire @mcguirp

14 Bea Meglio @megliomedia

15 Lindy Henderson @hendylou

16 Andy Forgrave @aforgrave

17 Brandon Grasley @bgrasley

18 Donna Fry @fryed

19 Mrs. Lewis @mrslewistweets

20 Heather Touzin @heathertouzin

21 Mark Carbone @markwcarbone

22 Daniel Pinizzotto @mrpinizzotto

23 Brenda Sherry @brendasherry

24 Michelle Parrish @mproom31

25 Kellyann Power @kellypower

26 Heidi Siwak @heidisiwak

27 Doug Peterson @dougpete

28 Rita Givlin @ritagivlin

29 Stacey Wallwin @wallwins

30 Denise Buttenaar @butden

Day 22: Modelling a Growth Mindset

Written and shared by Daniel Pinizzotto. Daniel is a Math, Physics, and Computer Programming teacher; learning to step outside the box and trying to bring tech into the class more effectively. Follow him on Twitter: @mrpinizzotto
(Featured Image Credit: Sergiu Bacioiu via Compfight cc)

Thinking About Math Education

Yesterday I went to Edcamp London and went into a session about growth mindset.  Not knowing what this would entail, I was wondering if the topic was going to focus on the growth mindset of educators or students.  When I went in I was hoping to get the perspective on how we as educators can help students in their mindset.  I currently feel that my Grade 12 class would benefit from me educating them on persevering in their education as most are off to college in September.  It was my goal to get a better idea of how I could educate my students to have a better mindset in their future education.

Great conversations started from Andrew Kwiecien, Ryan Chisholm, and Jeremie Roselle about the book on mindset from Carol Dweck.  The book covers how we can use our growth mindset when we want by looking at…

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Day 17: Using Twitter for Professional Learning

Written and shared by Brandon Grasley

About a year ago I wrote a blog post called “How I Use Twitter Professionally – Updated!“. Since then I’ve refined or changed my use a bit more, so I thought it was worth refreshing the post again. So, the content below is the same as before, but with current stuff.

My tweets are public.

I’m trying to encourage conversation and collaboration, so my tweets are globally accessible. This also means I don’t make statements I wouldn’t be comfortable with anyone reading – my family, my students, my employer….

I don’t follow a lot of people.

I currently follow 292 people (that’s a big increase in the last year; about doubled), of whom about 200 are actively tweeting (let’s say at least weekly). Some of these aren’t related to education; for example, I follow The LEGO Group (@LEGO_Group).

I can’t read all of the stuff they tweet. I’m relying on my tweeps to retweet the really good stuff so I have a better chance of seeing it, or to mention me if it’s something they think I ought to notice.

I accept anyone as a follower, pretty much.

Except for a few obvious accounts, I let anyone follow me. Since my tweets are public, anyone can read them (even without a Twitter account), so letting people follow me doesn’t reveal anything extra. Plus, it’s easier when you don’t have to approve people.

I don’t follow back as a courtesy.

Before I decide to follow someone, I take a look at their tweet history. Is their stream of tweets going to enhance my experience? Will I learn from them? Or will I only learn what they had for breakfast?

I’m a fan of some personal stuff on Twitter, but if you post 300 times a day just to talk without conversing, I don’t need to see it. It’s not about you, it’s just that your use of Twitter doesn’t fit with mine.

Today I noticed that I have 3 fewer followers than I did a few days ago. Since there were a few new followers recently that means that more than 3 cut me off their list. That’s totally expected, and is actually pretty great. I think your lifestyle on Twitter should be like the Law of Two Feet: if it’s not working for you, move on.

I don’t accept Direct Messages (DMs)  from people I don’t follow.

This cuts down on the spam. Now it’s just mentions, and there aren’t too many of those. This is a good idea for anyone, so I thought I’d list it here.

I follow hashtags for a while.

Recently I followed #OTRK12 (our annual conference in Mississauga) and #GAFEsummit. I don’t follow the very busy tags, although I sometimes apply them to my posts (#D2L, #onted, #blendedlearning, #edtech).

I try to follow the people in Northern Ontario. We face many of the same issues, and perhaps we have solutions to help each other. I like that idea.

I don’t cross post to Facebook anymore.

I tweet too much. No one on Facebook wants to read all of that stuff. The handful of FB friends who do are also Twitter users and teachers, so they just go to Twitter to find me. When I write blog posts WordPress will publicize them on Facebook, Twitter, and Google Plus, and I’m certain that’s plenty for the FB crowd.

I use Tweetdeck; it rocks.

Chrome has TweetDeck as an app; I like that I can have columns for a variety of things I want to look at. Currently I have my Twitter timeline, my Twitter Interactions, my Twitter Messages (DMs), columns for #edCampSault, #OTRK12,  #OSSEMOOC,  @timrobinsonj’s eLC list@MeglioMedia’s Tech Enabled Learning list@ColleenKR’s SGDSB list, and #niprockart. It’s great.

I say things for myself, and I say things for others.

I tweet things that I want to remember or revisit (great for “note-taking” at a session/workshop/conference). I also tweet things to inform others or start conversations. My tweets (of links and such) aren’t endorsements, but since people sometimes view them that way I try not to share stuff that I’m not at least familiar with.

I talk a lot, but not too much

I try to ask questions and help out when others ask questions. I’m proud to say I am included as an honourary member of the SGDSB educators list because I help out the teachers up there, so I think my contributions are valued.

More importantly, I’m developing relationships with these distant folks, and the growth of my PLN has helped me out in my work as well. It was very exciting recently at OTRK12 to meet people whom I knew only through Twitter, and it was surprising how natural the face-to-face interactions felt. We were already friends. So thanks, tweeps.

If you want to follow me…

I’m @bgrasley. No pressure, of course. Use Twitter however it works best for you!

Brandon Grasley is the eLC for Algoma District School Board and the chair of the recent OTRK12 Conference.

Collaborative Blogging: What Did You Learn Today?

#OSSEMOOC is excited to announce a new project for April:

30 Days of Learning in Ontario: What Did You Learn Today?

“Days of Learning” Collaborative Blogs are common.  Here are just a few examples:

Parkland School Division, Alberta: http://www.psdblogs.ca/184/

Delta School Division (British Columbia): http://www.psdblogs.ca/184/

30 Days of Learning is a collective/collaborative blog where each day, someone in the Ontario Education Community shares something they have learned.

We know that personal reflection is a key ingredient for learning.  By reflecting on, and sharing our learning, we are modelling the practice for others.

We know that to drive innovative thinking forward, we must be willing to take risks.  This collective blog provides a safe prompt and a community of support to help educators take advantage of an opportunity to begin openly sharing their learning.

We want your contribution!

What did you learn today?  Please respond in 500 words or less (aim for around 300).  It can be in writing, audio, video, or a combination.  Ask if you need help finding images suitable for publication (creative commons licensed, for example).

Email you submission to ossemooc at gmail.com.  Include your First and Last Name (mandatory), and a short bio, your blog address and your twitter handle if you like.

(Use this form: https://ossemooc.wordpress.com/submit-your-blot-post-here/)

Please submit asap, as the first 30 submissions will be published.  The “official” launch of the project will occur at OTRK12.

Thanks for your support, and we look forward to reading about your learning!