15 Comments

  1. Nicole Lakusta

    Your school continues to demonstrate the benefits for using social media in education and connecting them with student identity. I always look forward to reading and seeing the development of skills, the integration of authentic learning experiences and the deep reflection taking place!

    • George

      Thanks Nicole 🙂 It has been such an exciting year at the school and I am looking forward to it just growing!

  2. Great post – shifting to a "learning community" resonates strongly with what I believe to be the needed work for admin. We need to work with all members of the school community to help them see the benefit of connected learning. Parents and staff may have fears that need to be aired and addressed as part of the shift. Recognizing that not everyone is as willing to take the necessary leap right away means that we are willing to do the work required together to provide the learning experiences our kids need. The time invested in educating everyone about the benefits of connecting and building a responsible online presence is time well spent. It can be hard work, but getting feedback like that email demonstrates that the shift is indeed taking place. Kudos, George!

    Shannon

  3. I absolutely love this post, George, and I find it very timely too, as I was talking about this exact same thing at my inservice on Friday. Many of the teachers that attended asked me about parental concerns about using Web 2.0 tools in the classroom, and I said that there weren't any. They couldn't believe it! I explained that I was very up front about what tools I used, how I educated students to be safe online, and how these tools were helping the students learn (and meet curriculum expectations). I encouraged parents to email or call me if they had questions, and none of them did. Parents just seemed happy that their students were happy and learning too. It's definitely about building an environment of trust and a true learning community. You and your teachers have obviously done that!

    Aviva

  4. Very timely, thanks for this post. I truly feel that without a learning community and a climate of collaboration we can't grow as learners, professionals nor as an organization. I'm very concerned with the trend in schools to blame the tool and forget about educating our stakeholders about ways to use the tools (social media, web tools) to leverage knowledge and build their own PLN in a positive way.

    Keep doing great things, and we will all learn from you-

    Dodie

  5. We can often get in the routine of feeling we need to find ways to communicate better with our parents instead of feeling we need to find ways to actually engage and collaborate with parents. Thanks for pushing the envelope in all areas in order to build a stronger learning community.

  6. Thanks a lot, George for this great post. It sounds very reassuring, and I hope one day we'll be receiving more of the comments you got from parents. At the moment schools and educators in Central and Eastern Europe have difficulties understanding the 'whys', because we have been conditioned to "it's not possible" under communism for so many years. However, I do believe that it IS possible and both parents and educators will, eventually see the value in such community learning. Your school is my prime example and I will keep sharing it!

    Thank you!

    Erika

    • Erika,

      Your comment is so inspiring to me. It is great that we can share what we are doing to help push what they are doing across the world. Wow! I am just amazed by the authentic creations we are creating so easily, across the world. Thanks for your comment!

  7. This fits well with the discussion we're having at the Division level about how our reporting procedures can be more meaningful and actually have an impact on student learning. Why not take the time we put into writing report cards and pit it into a more ongoing, interactive process.

  8. Social media will be a necessary way to function in the very near future. We need to learn how to embrace this interactive form of communication and help the students use it.

  9. Having read this I believed it was very informative. I appreciate you finding the time and effort to put this informative article together. I once again find myself spending a lot of time both reading and commenting. But so what, it was still worth it!

  10. I, too, loved that you refer to parents as a learning community. Last evening, I was chatting with parents from a previous school where I was Principal. They have since moved to another community. The dad said to me, “Donna, what T is learning in her biology class isn’t going to help her 6 years from now when she gets her biology degree because it will all be changed! They have to do something about this curriculum thing.”

    Yes, we do. And now parents are getting that, and we are approaching that critical mass we need to really effect change.

    Thanks for sharing.

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