The best work that anybody ever writes is the work that is on the verge of embarrassing him, always.
I tried not to do it but I couldn’t resist. I have parodied Superintendent Chris Kennedy on two previous occasions, taking his masterful Top Three List and brutalizing it a bit with my own satirical Top Three. I did this in 2012, and 2013. In 2014 I wrote a half-baked caricature but did not have the nerve to publish it. Now we are in 2015 and he has published his Top Three again (see here and read his first). I was waiting for it. I cannot keep my cheek in check. Even in this form, please note, “imitation is the sincerest form of flattery” (Charles Colton).
My Top Three Blog Posts
Here are most read posts for 2015, as gleaned from my followers.
But, I have to tell you the stats are absolutely pathetic. It is a wonder I post anything at all. The social media honeymoon just might be over. I note that the second most read post this year (2. A Window into Learning) was even published last year, in December 2014. At that, the post Treasure Wild Ducks: The Flight of Innovation continues to be the most popular piece and that was published way back in November, 2013.
Top Three Blog Posts I Would Like to be Writing
Chris seems disappointed more people are not blogging. He gives no explanation for why there is less blogging but leaves us hanging for a “next post” (unintended irony) on that topic. With no excuses–I expect to find him unpacking it for us in the New Year. And I would like to point out, I, at least, have excuses. I have not even started the blog posts that I would really like to finish. I would if I had time. I would if I could think clearly. I would if I didn’t have an inbox full of email. I would if I didn’t have four children underfoot (even Chris could have used that one). Posts that keep swirling in my head:
- Scaling Up: Chasing the Unholy Grail of Transformation
- Research Results from a District-Wide Learning Commons Implementation
- Passion, Purpose and People: The Interlocking Keys to Excellence
The Top Three Regularly Used Education words (that show we still don’t really know what we are talking about)
See also “scaling up” referred to above. Pardon my cynicism.
Top Three Videos I Have Watched
First of all, I would like to know when people have time to watch all these TEDx videos? I am still relishing the same animated movies from previous years.
- How to Train a Dragon
- How to Train a Dragon 2
- Despicable Me
I feel better AND I am inspired by the sheer art and beauty of them. Sometime I will find a list of the Top 10 videos for Educators, make some popcorn (or melt some butter and sprinkle it with popcorn) and then watch them all.
The Top Three1 Stories People will be talking about in BC in 2016 (see also above category regularly used education words)
- Reporting (aka Communicating Student Learning).
- Scaling Up.
The Top Three2 Things I Learned This Year
- Hard Work Isn’t Always Enough
- Excellence is in the Eye of the Beholder
- Timing is Everything
- Professional Learning is Never Done
- Sometimes You Need to Let it Go
Top Three People/Things That Inspire Me
- Good Friends: They help me to “let it go”
- My Staff: They are amazing at what they do
- The Quiet: Silence in the swirl of work & home is treasured
The Top Three Books I Am Still Working On
- The Genius Hour Guidebook by Denise Krebs & Gallit Zvi
- The Innovators Mindset by George Couros
- Accelerate (XCR8) by John Kotter
Top Three Professional Highlights for 2015:
- New Staff Members: Karen Fadum (@mrsfadum) and Joe Tong (@teachertong), both Communicating Student Learning Helping Teachers, Shauna Nero (@MmeNero), Modern Languages Helping Teacher and Maryanne Kempthorne (@Maryakem), new Manager of Learning Resources. You should follow them all on twitter–they are great additions to an already amazing #sd36learn Education Services Team!
- A Window into My Child’s Learning: Having my own son get a digital portfolio (via @freshgrade) was an unexpected surprise. I’ve been working on this partnership for three years and when it reaches my own child who attends school in another district–that’s personally and professionally rewarding. I get my own parent view!
- Learning from Others: Finding out how other leaders do their work in other districts in B.C. and across Canada, inspires me.
Leaders I Admire:
- Dean Shareski (because I won a coveted #deanie award and he is a most gracious and giving man)
- Chris Kennedy (I continue to be inspired and learn from his work)
- Many Woman Leaders (some identified in this provocative post)
To sum up the 2015 year can be a daunting task. To follow the high bar set by Chris Kennedy in his blog Culture of Yes is impossible. I have blogged, though, at last.
And a big thank you to those of you that take the time to read my posts. Thanks for your patience with me as I continue to learn what it means to push the boundaries of innovation, attempt to transform education, personalize learning for both students and teachers, communicate that learning to wider audiences and scale up these changes across our district and beyond.3
I will be, forever, a dreamer.
1Did I mention I have a Numeracy problem?
2Numeracy continues to be a challenge.
3Guilty, I am.