Focus Day – Surrey, BC


To say that we live in interesting times, can only be seen as an understatement — and this is especially true among educators. We are navigating a perfect storm of converging conditions that are rocking our boat. Many ignore these storms — and I fear for their remaining afloat. Surrey is certainly one of the ships that is trying not only to navigate, but to plot courses for the success of its children.

The winds of the storm may help. We are, today, preparing a new generation of students, within a new information environment, for a future that we can not clearly describe. I will begin with a more formal presentation that paints this pictures, illustrating and describing these converging conditions. Materials on this presentation can be found here:

Then we will look at storm number one, a new generation of learners. We have long seen their lust for technology in video games, social networkinportunity there. Perhaps we might learn that what is true and unique about their experience is that it is driven by pedagogy. We look at the qualities of that experience, the pedagogies, and then explore what they may look like as formal learning experiences. Materials are available here:

The second storm is about information, which is the core of our stuggles as educators. Information is what we want our students to learn and how to work and communicate that information. But the nature of information has changed. It is increasingly networked, digital and abundant. How do these brand new qualities of our information landscape change what it means to be literate?. Materials on this more interactive session can be found here:

So how do we prepare our children for a future we can not clearly describe. We promote in them a Learning Lifestyle. We make sure that they have the skills and the habits to continue learning, continue to be curious and continue to be open to opportunities for life, work, and play. This starts with us, the educators. We should practice public learning in front of our students every day, and that requires that we become gardeners of learning networks. Materials on cultivating a learning garden can be found here:

I certainly enjoyed my day with you in Surrey, and I look forward to coming back to Vancouver sometime in the next few monts for the principals and vice principals conference. Ive already started commenting on the backchannel, which you can access here

I think that one of the high points for me was when Heidi Hass Gable tweeted “Myth – that virtual is always superficial and face to face is always meaningful.” I think that its the immigrant in us, if I might further abuse that analogy. We grew up using the virtual (TV) for entertainment, Beverly Hillbillies and Gilligans Island. It cant possibly be meaningful.

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