Wednesday, February 26, 2014

This week's round-up

All right then! It's been a long time since I long that even after my last project finished up and the holidays calmed down and technically I've had the time and inclination to do so, I just...couldn't do ir. This big electronic piece of white paper is a little angry and intimidating when you haven't visited with it in a while.

So, I'm not going to try write anything profoundly insightful today. I'm going to write about what, in brief, I've been thinking about.

I've been thinking about the Friends of the Chicago River Student Congress I volunteered at last Saturday. Our poor just doesn't get the glory that our lake does. I'm so glad Friends exists and Chicago governance in general seems a bit more focused on giving our hard-working, surprisingly calm and pretty river its due. Now to just make it as clean as it is pretty. I was especially impressed with the Cook County Forest Preserve District's brand-spankin' new Urban Ambassadors initiative, which was made possible by a special grant the CCFPD received. Cook County Forest Preserve District in general has been really hiring some fantastic people and making some exciting, productive efforts to get folks of all ages and backgrounds out into nature. I'm looking forward to the next Calumet Stewardship Initiative's Green Drinks, at which CCFPD head Arnold Randall will be speaking.

I've been thinking about Instructional Design. There's an awful lot of learning--of all kinds, not just K12 learning--being facilitated by software, and benefiting from the power and perspective that digital and online tools can offer. Real-time models, maps of all sorts, research sources, interactive's pretty amazing. The possibilities are pretty exciting.

Now, if only teachers could be given the space, time, trust, and resources to learn those tools, and incorporate them fully into their practice--you know, like folks who work in corporations get to do without question or delay or weird overbearing evaluations or random people and entities inserting themselves into every step.

On a related note, here's a great post about how everyone thinks they know what teachers do, because everyone went to school--and how that is hurting our education policy and outcomes mightily.

And with that--I think I'll sign off. Two posts a week, folks, two posts a week. Talk soon!

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