A Month of Blogging

  "My blogging life is basically goalless. I like the zen nature of that, and paradoxically, it improves results." ~ Seth Godin   Well it's over. My month long challenge of blogging every day has finally come to an end. Looking back on the 29 blog posts it has been a real learning experience. There were days that I struggled to come up with a topic but suddenly an idea found me. It may have been that I was more present than normal through the month so I was open to seeing clearly what was in front of me or it may have been that I just pushed myself to get my thoughts and ideas into a post. Either way it has been a wonderful experience.  Over the month of June my posts generated over 10,000 hits, 33 comments and 100's of shares on Twitter, Google+, Pinterest and LinkedIn. But...
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If You Write, They Will Read

"Blogging and the Internet allow us to engage in a lot more real time conversations as opposed to a one-way dump of information or a message." ~ Indra Nooyi    When I started this month long challenge of blogging every day my goal was ultimately to challenge readers thinking and to start conversations about what I find important. Blogging can be a very personal endeavour which scares many people away from creating a blog to share their thoughts with the world. What I have come to realize about writing a blog post and sharing it with the world is that people will read it, and if the topic hits a nerve with them, they will comment. As I come to the end of the first week of my challenge I am so pleased and impressed with the conversations that have developed through comments that readers have left. It has pushed...
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Looking Back, Moving Forward

  "Always bear in mind that your own resolution to succeed is more important than any other" ~ Abraham Lincoln   It's that time of year where you begin to see more and more blog posts reflecting on the past year and looking forward to the next. It's a time when many people make resolutions. You can find lots of strategies and suggestions for making and keeping your resolutions but I have always found that above all one of the most important strategies is to put them in writing. By committing your resolutions to writing, especially in a public space like a blog, will bring your focus and purpose together to make that commitment strong. If you don't have a blog, write them on paper and post them where you can see them often. Whether your resolutions are personal or professional the only way you will succeed is to find...
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3 Things I've Noticed About My Writing

    "Better to write for yourself and have no public, than to write for the public and have no self." ~ Writer, Cyril Connolly   Up until I started blogging about a year ago the only real writing I did was for report cards. In Teacher's College I had to write a few papers but nothing that couldn't be done in a short period of time with a little bit of effort. In University my major of Human Kinetics didn't have any courses that required papers to write as other majors like History or Psychology. High School was more of a party for me so I can't say I remember learning much about writing. Although I must say I had 2 of the best English teachers you could hope for. My writing skills, or lack thereof, was in no way due to them. Since starting my Master in School...
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Love, Writing and Chocolate Kisses

It's amazing what kindergarten students can do when given the opportunity. As this week came to a close I couldn't stop thinking about their amazing thoughts and writing about what love is. It's hard to believe that some of these same students, just 5 short months ago, started school without knowing the alphabet or even how to count to 10. Now their writing and profound thoughts on love have me counting myself lucky to be reminded about what love is. For me, love is my daughter ZoĆ«. As she approaches her first birthday I can't imagine my life without her. So, If you are lucky enough to be celebrating Family Day this Monday I hope you enjoy the holiday with your loved ones and maybe even enjoy some "choklit kises". 
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A Great iPad Blogging App

Today I wanted to create a blog post demonstrating the power of a great blogging app I've recently discovered called Blogsy. Now I realize the argument that is out there that the iPad is a completely different tool from a laptop, or desktop for that matter, but there have been times where I have found myself wanting to create a post but I didn't have access to my laptop or desktop. At $4.99 some people might take a pass on the app but once you see it in action you might change your mind. By the way everything in this blog post has been created using Blogsy as well as Siri. There has been no typing on my part (well other than clearing up a few formatting issues). I must say that when I first read about Blogsy I was a little skeptical on the ease of which it could...
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Final Products

As promised in a blog I wrote on October 16th I have posted 2 videos from a recent video competition in Thames Valley.  The best part about about the final products you can view below weren't that they both were considered in the top 4 of submissions (which they were!) and they won't will blow your socks off with meaningful or deep content.  The best part of the projects are that the students can articulate how they can improve their final products next time and they are now excited about using technology as part of the writing process.  Enjoy. http://youtu.be/Qb7CUScYl2A   http://youtu.be/riDKtmikqok
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Student Created Videos

As I watched students this week creating videos for a district wide competition I decided to come up with a list of the benefits of integrating video creation into the curriculum. Engages students in the writing process - Before getting their hands on cameras and computers students storyboard the scenes they plan on having in their movie.  They write scripts, develop the narration and acting prompts for each scene.  Together they edit, revise and map out the direction of their movie. Problem Solving - Even after writing, editing and revising their initial copy, students will encounter issues with their original plans.  This is a great opportunity to be creative on the fly, adding to their creations. Models the process professionals go through - One of the most powerful, real-life stories I tell students is that of published author Eric Wilson, a former teacher who wrote stories for his students. They...
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