I have a Math folder in my Google Reader and it only contains two blogs: One is Darren Kuropatwa, whom I consider one of the finest models of using technology effectively with high school students. The other is Dan Meyer. Dan is a different cat (see this post to get the idea). That’s part of his appeal but beyond his unique style he pushes my thinking. I begin with this 30 minute podcast trying to learn Dan’s thoughts on assessment. We had never talked before this so forgive any awkwardness which I’ll take the blame for but have a listen, leave a comment and hopefully Dan will agree to do a few more of these.
In a world where information and ideas are everywhere, I’m fascinated when people have a healthy obsession with something and go into great detail to analyze and deconstruct a topic or idea.
Sometimes it’s the topic itself but more often than not, it’s the person’s enthusiasm for the most minute details that keeps me interested.
As a sports fan, you may be familiar with the term “inside baseball” a broad term now used to refer to any behind the scenes insights or knowledge. Speaking of baseball, love him or hate him, I love listening to someone like Pete Rose talk about hitting. As arguably the greatest hitter in baseball, his breakdown of his craft is fascinating.
Sports analysts can often be annoying and yet can add new insights into their game. Here’s an example of two “experts” debating one of the most over analyzed topics in golf: Tiger Woods’ golf swing.
Unless you’re a golf fan, you didn’t watch that but what fascinates me is the detail and the passion they display as they argue this very unimportant topic. It reminds me of some of most memorable moments as a kid when we used to argue over the … Read the rest
As a follow up to my previous post on learning, I’ll add this one to the list of things we’ve made more complicated than it ought to be. In a sense it’s much the same as Professional Development is obviously learning too but perhaps needs to have a little more light shed on it.
I was thinking back about 10 years. I attended a three day workshop with several of my colleagues in Prairie South in Portland with Dr. Rick Stiggins talking specifically about Assessment but also Professional Learning Communities. It was really the first time I had heard about the Dufour model and its impact on student learning. We left those workshops feeling very excited about both these ideas. As we thought about the PLC model I pushed very hard that we not tell people what their PLC’s should be centered around but rather let every teacher choose something they wanted to learn about. I then would take all the submissions and allow teachers to self select their groups. Of course lots of concerns were shared about logistics about how we would organize these groups and how would we know it was effective.
It's not like I have nothing else to do but when people ask "Where do you find the time?" it's usually not because they think what I've done is so amazing but rather so dumb or insignificant.
Thanks for the compliment.
I take solace in Clay Shirky's statement that "even the stupidest creative act, is still a creative act". If I've not created something in a while I feel a little stale. These web and media tools are my paintbrushes and my canvases. I love that folks like Alan Levine and others are constantly making and fiddling with stuff. They inspire me and remind me to just do it.
So after thinking about Dan Meyer's 2009 Annual Report and sharing it often as a example of using data to tell storie, I decided to give it a shot. While Dan used a wack sack of tools and does a much more professional job that took him weeks to produce, I wanted to see if I could use Keynote to tell the story of my year in numbers. So after an evening of planning, data mining, watching a few tutorials, I built my 2012 report. I spent most … Read the rest
While Dan Meyer is almost young enough to be my kid, he's been around these parts for a while and has provided a boat load of people with quality ideas and content. I rarely go through a presentation where I don't mention him at some point. This snippet from a conversation I had with Dan a couple years back always gets people thinking about the economics of sharing: