Sunday, January 23, 2011

CDNIS Better Blogging Battle

With the success in Grade 5 blogging over the past 2 years, my school invested in a WordPress platform to get all students, teachers and administrators blogging. So far the adoption of blogging as a tool for communication and community building has been impressive. Some people have learned so much, so quickly and have really taken the initiative to a high level of success with their enthusiasm and willingness to work on something new.

I have recently created a Better Blogging Battle competition geared towards CDNIS students and classes who are ready for a challenge and want to learn more about blogging around the world.

If you've ever hosted a challenge competition like this one (on any topic), I'd love some feedback and advice!

Image: "I Heart Blogging"

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Google Science Fair

"Google is looking for the brightest, best young scientists from around the world to submit interesting, creative projects that are relevant to the world today."
This is like Science Fair meets Blogging Challenge meets TED. Young minds from all over the world will be showcasing science fair exhibits, as movies and presentations, in Google's newest competition for anyone aged 13-18.

Google has, in partnership with CERN, The LEGO Group,National Geographic and Scientific American, created a collaborative, interactive, global, online competition called The Google Science Fair. The competition website includes a blog and an area for contestants to socialize and share their ideas. You will also find an space full of Google resources to help you get set up, as well as a Teacher page for those of you who will be promoting this opportunity for your students.

The launch event, on January 11th, included a speech by William Kamkwamba, The Boy Who Harnessed The Wind. This is an incredible story of ingenuity, inquiry and initiative by a boy who taught himself how to construct a windmill in rural Africa, providing power to his small village during a time of immense suffering and a struggle to survive after a horrible drought. 

With a wealth of fun prizes, world-renowned science judges, and the belief that science can change the world, this competition is sure to motivate and inspire some amazing things that'll knock our socks off. Welcome to new school.

Saturday, January 1, 2011


In 2011 I am going to blog about all the things that are new school.

It's fun to reminisce about old school nostalgia, the good 'ol days and the times when life was simple, of course, but what's really hot right now is the future and all the possibilities and opportunities that are becoming available to us on a global scale. Technology infused curriculum, transdiciplinary learning, 21st century classrooms, global communication skills, innovation, collaboration, synthesis, production, application and best of all, the real world. School no longer needs to prepare students for the real world after graduation, because teachers are starting to respect the fact that school is the real word. We are always learning, always growing and capable of joining the ranks of life beyond the classroom at any age. School doesn't have to be an institution designated to prepare us for life. New school can be life itself, an investigation into how we live it and how the world works.

All these things make being a teacher and a learner so fabulously exciting and rich. Stay tuned for snip-its from the highly creative and powerful ideas that are all the buzz of my new school. Back to the future... and back to school.