Monthly Archives: December 2012

School’s out Friday

The video above has gone viral on YouTube. For good reason too. The act of giving almost always provokes a reaction, but none so genuine as this Father’s response to the gift of tickets to a game. I dare you not to smile as you watch this.

And because I’ve been absent for so long, here’s another vid that I hope will make you smile. It’s Nasa Johnson style, an educational parady of Gangnam Style.

If I were teaching Science, I’d be trying to find a way to use this in one of my classes next year. And if I were teaching Physics, I’d definitely be using some of the videos from the minutephysics channel on YouTube in my classes. Here’s one I watched this week that had some answers to something that has crossed my mind as I’m making a break across the oval at school on rainy days!

Sorry for what seems like a prolonged absence here of late. There’s been a lot going on. Hopefully, I’ll get an opportunity to devote some time to growing this space instead of letting it lie stagnant. I’m surprised there are still posts being read given the lack of posting in recent times. It’s probably reflective really of having the balance in my life right – sometimes your energies need to be elsewhere.

To those of you still hanging in here, have a great weekend. Gear yourself up for the fast approaching new year – let’s hope it’s a good one. :)

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Natalie’s nook – what every school library needs!

Natalie's nook

Don’t you just love it!

We do :)

Natalie Elliott is our very creative Library Technician who loves finding ways to make our Library spaces more interesting and inviting for our students. We recently purchased this chair thinking that it matched our colour scheme. It sat around for  awhile looking lovely, whilst unbeknownst to us, Natalie was brewing grand plans for it that had been seeded from her love of all things Pinterest. Her forays into that web of fascinating ideas shared by many, led to the idea for the clever shelving and the inviting lampshade that helps to make this space so cosy.

We are very lucky to have such dedicated staff like Natalie who spend time outside of working hours thinking of ideas for our library space. Natalie is currently studying at Charles Sturt University to obtain her Librarian qualifications.  I know that we endorse her skill set – let’s hope that any assignment about library design allows her to share this post as a reference!

Here’s another view from a different angle.

Natalie's nook 2

Thanks Natalie – we love it!

 

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School’s out Friday

Have you been wondering if School’s out Friday or maybe even this blog had bitten the dust? I wouldn’t be surprised if you had, given my lack of activity of late. It’s my hope that I can get some consistant posting happening in the coming weeks, as school commitments slow down and I grab some time to consolidate some thinking and get ideas penned here.

I’m a fan of the festive season. I love a good round of carols and an impressive light show. I’m on the lookout for a halfway decent Carols by Candlelight in my locale and if there’s a well lit house display up for viewing after the event, I’ll be there. Hence tonight’s offerings. Start with the flash mob singing a round of carols in an American shopping centre, then finish with a clever light show from Perth featuring christmas lights synchronised to Psy’s Gangman Style.

All of this reminds me that I must attend to some Christmas shopping this weekend. And I must commit some time to finding the delicate necklace I brought for my daughter earlier in the year, but cleverly hid from her view. If only I remembered where that hiding spot was…  wish me luck in my search!

Enjoy your weekend. Hopefully you’re supremely organised and don’t need to hit the shops. If you do, steel yourself for the frenzy you’re likely to encounter. Best of luck!  :)

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Creative Innovation 2012 – a conference that got me thinking

I felt very fortunate last week to have the opportunity to attend Creative Innovation 2012,a two day conference organised by Tania De Jong, a pint sized marvel with a resume that makes me wonder how she has time to breathe, let alone pull together a conference like this. This was a conference attended largely by people from business with its focus being, “Wicked problems, great opportunities! Leadership and courage for volatile times.” I met only one other teacher over the course of two days. I’d like to see the organisers consider providing more incentive for schools to send teams along by offering discounted rates to educational institutions, who can benefit greatly from the ideas being shared, but might be hard pressed to send more than one person along.

I’ve put together a Storify that contains a chronological view of my tweet stream over the course of the two days. I take my notes via Twitter. I figure it’s beneficial to not just me, but to others who get a view of what is going on at an event they are not attending. The feedback from Twitter was that it was beneficial – take a look at the Storify and judge for yourself.

It was a conference that surprised me. Every session was worthwhile, providing takeaways that I could apply to my experience. Even when I thought I wasn’t going to gain much from a session, a speaker would blow me away. Dr Megan Clark, CEO of the CSIRO was amazing – her identification of what she described as megatrends confirmed a lot of my thinking. See the Storify where they are outlined. Jason Drew, an Eco-entrepreneur had a really interesting story to share. Take a look at the following TEDx talk he delivered in 2011 to see what I mean.

I would have liked to hear Thomas Frey, futurist speaker from the Da Vinci Institute speak for longer about his vision of what the future holds, and thanks to the wonders of YouTube I can, with the following 49 minute video filmed at The Getty Images Inspiration Session in September of this year. His topic, the future of content.


Michael Rennie spoke beautifully about the importance of loving what it is you do. He asked us to think of a moment when we we were truly energised in our work. For many of us there, we could recognise his recipe for a high performing environment. Have an almost impossible but meaningful goal. Be aware that failure sits alongside it (there is a risk factor involved), as does a caring trusting environment (and this will support you through all the hard work). Michael has a very interesting background – he contracted cancer at 30 and it changed his approach to work, life and leadership. You can read about his experience and insights in this article. Here’s Michael speaking at last year’s Creative Innovation conference.

Li Cunxin spoke about his experiences and had me transfixed. I know his story well, but his delivery is impeccable; you can’t help but be moved. Wade Davis, the man with the best job title in the world, Explorer in Residence at National Geographic, put things in perspective with his tales of tribal communities in many lands who have much to teach those of us who think the Western world has all the answers. Here he is delivering a TED talk in 2008.

Who impacted on me the most? Unexpectedly, Steve Vamos. Steve is President of Society for Knowledge Economics and is a Non Executive Director of Telstra, David Jones and Medibank Private. He spoke in a no nonsense fashion about the need for us to participate in the difficult conversations with people we work with, but to do it with humanity, to treat people respectfully. It’s his belief that people need feedback, they need to have clear purpose in their work and know what they need to be doing. Here he is speaking about similar things at last year’s Creative Innovation conference. Sensible man speaking. Listen.

It was a wonderful conference that will be running again in 2013. If you get an opportunity to go, I’d highly recommend it. In the meantime, read the Storify and look at the conference program. Google the speakers and do what I’ve done -check out what you can find on YouTube. There’s much to learn when you find the right kind of people to listen to.

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