ETMOOC … The GIFT That Keeps On Giving

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I am so grateful for all the gifts that ETMOOC has given me.  As I reflect upon the year I think about all the wonderful people I have met and the things we have shared.

The invite :

My first ETMOOC POST a year ago

I am a life long learner and willing to take risks and here I am signing up for #etmooc. The tweet by @courosa from @fryed on,  “What is #ETMOOC and why should you join us? ” is what finally convinced me to … just do it!!!

In one of my @haikudecks I said I would DO MORE in 2013 and here I am. Stepping out of my box and doing more.

A little nervous yes, (to be honest I was a lot nervous), but at least I am NOT going to be graded, I can just learn!! Yahoo!!! I love learning without being graded. I have had enough of that.

So in the next few months, I look forward to learning just for the sake of learning.

It is Alec Couros who inspired me to become interested in technology as much as I have and I am grateful. So thanks Alec. Here Alec is motivating me again … So my journey begins…

It is hard to believe it has been a year since I started thinking about should I or shouldn’t I take ETMOOC?  Wow, am I glad I did. I think … no I know, I am more grateful now than I was then because I did not realize just how much I would learn as a result of being in ETMOOC. More importantly it would be about the connections I would make. No, even more important it would be about the friendships I would make and continue to develop.

An excerpt from my second post is very telling “ Today, January 20th a week into ETMOOC I needed to remind myself to find the positive as I was frustrated with learning how to use new information for importing media. Trust The Process. I will say that over and over to remain calm.”

I am a school counsellor and at that time I knew very little about tech tools and how to do a lot with the technology. At that time …

I had NEVER …

  • Blogged
  • Vlogged
  • Made YouTube videos. (I did not even have an account and now I can help students upload their videos.)
  • Given proper attribution, but now I do .
  • Curate information, but now I have over 100 livebinders and a zillion pinterest pins. Here is one live binder .
  • Attended an Edcamp and EdCamphome, but now I have .
  • Collaborated with a student on a post, but here it is .
  • Created a google doc, and now I can even add to one .
  • I hardly ever tweeted . I now have over 6,000 tweets (I knew very little about twitter then) Now; I can give workshops on how to understand twitter better. I even co-moderate twitter chats.  Makes me laugh even writing this .
  • I did not know how to Google Hangout, but now I do regularly with educators from across the world.

There are so many skills that I have now, that it is even hard for me to believe I know how to do certain things technologically. My biggest smile comes when someone actually thinks I am a techy.

In another early post I finally recognize what my true purpose for being in #ETMOOC  is…

“ In my attempt to assist students along their journey in life, I reach out attempting to make a difference. This jumping out of my box into the ED tech world is my way of touching the hearts of many students so that they can get the supports they need. Counselling is more than assisting a student in my office. It is reaching out to students on a more global scale. It is being able to use technology to reach and teach them.  I will promise to use this process to educate from the heart using technology and all the tools ETMOOC gives me.”

This is still one of my favorite videos of the year:

“We must be willing to let go of the life we have planned so as to have the life that is waiting for us” Joseph Campbell

ETMOOC allowed me to be OPEN to new experiences, people and ideas. Well, I have certainly attempted to educate from the heart this year. I have:

  • Created several  haiku decks for students and school counsellors.
  • Given a workshop on Digital Citizenship for all grade 10’s with the help of my colleagues. A special thanks to Peter Damen and Marc Osenton.
  • Helped to moderate our school twitter and facebook accounts.
  • Connected with countless educators and school counsellors.
  • Became a co-moderator for #SCCrowd .
  • Become a @HaikuDeck lover. Even got to visit Haiku Deck headquarters .
  • Created many vlogs in Openspokes and collaborated with fantastic educators.

So, how do you really thank someone especially you @Alec Couros who has taken you to places you were afraid to go? It isn’t easy, but I will try.

I think my way will be by paying it forward . My goal is to help as many school counsellors and others that I can to not be afraid. I have made many mistakes along this journey and I know I will continue to make them. Thanks to all the #ETMOOC’ers who helped me, showed me the way and continue to do so.

I am so grateful for my PLN. It is hard to put into words just how grateful I really am, but know that my heart is so full of gratitude it is overflowing and if we by chance get to meet F2F one day you will know because I will thank you in person.

Although my goal last year was to Do More . This year it will be to Do less with more ( this is easier said than done) , but I plan on staying focused on the things and the people that matter to me most. It is not that I will not be open to new experiences, people and ideas , I will. It is just that I need to say NO to some things and put my focus on those things that I remain passionate about.

So to end this post I want to create a vlog to thank you. I need to be ready which I am not right now. As I write this I cry happy tears thinking about all that all of you have done for me. No, even in my authenticity I will not create a vlog of me crying, so when I am ready I will make one just for you … that will come later, not sure when , but later.

I’d like to share some of the great posts you share in the next while so I will curate them in this live binder .  Thanks for sharing and may 2014 fill you with great happiness and bring you all of life’s blessings and gifts that you are searching for. May ETMOOC keep giving to you, so please stay connected with the hashtag #etmooc.

My last thought to share with you is tthat I hope one day that we will create a conference F2F called  Everyone Together Massive Open Onsite Conference. Are you with me ETMOOC ‘ers? ? I’ll be retired in a few years and would be happy to help organize such a conference, but will need lots of help. Let’s start thinking and planning so that we can meet as many ETMOOC ‘ers face to face as possible.

It’s been quite a year and I have received so many gifts from you , so again thanks to all of you for so much fun and inspiration especially:

@AlecCouros (without whom the giving of his time, energy, kindness and support while on sabbatical #ETMOOC would not have happened)

@fryed ( if I hadn’t seen your post maybe I would never have signed up)

@AlisonSeaman (got to meet F2F and she is as positive as she is online)

@JeffMerrell (for always being so encouraging and engaging)

@ehordyskiluong (for being by my side through all the ups and downs of learning and being so excited with me when we caught onto something new oh … you know the rest …)

@dendari (for always commenting, helping, sharing and being an #ooe13 leader and #openspokes team mate)

@grammasheri (for being such an amazing woman. I always love what you share. I can’t wait to meet you some day)

@verenanz (for being so inspirational , you are such a go getter and helper)

@valerielopes (for all her encouragement )

@clhendricksbc (for posting her first video and giving me the courage to do the same. Look how far we have come. You amaze me)

@rljessen (so happy we got to meet F2F after so many google hangouts We are creating a great friendship online and off. Thanks to the Post ETMOOC Group for hanging out and reading and sharing blogs. We have learned so much together Christina Hendricks @clhendricksbc , Karen Young @karenatsharon, Kirsten @KirstenTP and Erin Luong @ehordyskiluong )

@SISQITMAN (for all your thoughtful and kind comments …  you kept me writing . Always love what you have to say . Thank you!)

@bhwikkoff  (for creating OPENSPOKES  and being such a great leader. We have helped each other learn and grow)

and all the openspokers  Jeremy Inscho, Brendan Murphy,  JoeDillon , Jas Kooner, Gallit Zvi, Sheri Edwards, Denise Krebs and Erin Luong

@tina_p  ( for always connecting , being so positive and always making me smile. Love the Australian Connections @ActivateLearn)

@JudyArzt ( for letting me try out one of my first GH with her even though she did not know me)

@amyburvall (for all your creativity and positive energy and letting me join you in a crowdsourced video )

@debbiefuco @jacbalen @folynick @whitneykilgore  (for sharing and commenting and always being so positive in your interactions with me)

and to @djsamson for always posting great things in #ETMOOC maybe we will connect in Halifax some day.

To end thanks to all the presenters . YOU WERE FANTASTIC!

Alan Levine @Cogdog thanks for gathering all our blog posts to share and read.

Quoting Dave Cormier: “If we make community the curriculum, membership becomes how we scale. It’s all about belonging.”

School Counselling Tools Help … Lesson # 13

Lesson #13 School Counselling Tools Help

Resources help and these new videos by Dr. Erin Mason will be invalueable to those new to technology. Take a look. It will undoubtedly get you started on a journey that will be extremely helpful for you and your students. School Counsellors, these are for you :

DAY 1: TWITTER

DAY 2: LIVEBINDERS

DAY 3: GOOGLE DOCS and FORMS

Take a look here to find more from Smore .

Lessons  1-12 can be found here .

School Counsellors please join us in sharing resources. If you have and tips or lessons to share please do. We look forward to hearning from you.

An International Chat for School Counsellors #SCCrowd

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What is #SCCrowd?

SCCrowd is School Counsellors wanting to help each other and learn from those who are not school counsellors.  It is also for educators from around the world who want to collaborate with other school counsellors  to make a difference in the lives of students. That is what #SCCrowd is really all about. Ross Wolfson @rawolfson, a High School Counsellor  created the hashtag and idea for #SCCrowd. He wanted to find a way for school counsellors to learn from and with each other.

There were already several great chats on twitter for school counsellors , but Ross wanted one that was just a little different . Hence the idea for #SCCrowd

The inaugural chat was held for #SCCrowd on November the 19th.

We held the first Q&A Day on #SCCrowd and were very pleased with the great turnout! Check out the transcript  of the chat . After the first chat Ross and I were planning for the second chat so we collaborated to discuss ideas for a haiku deck and what we wanted people to know about #SCCrowd and this is the  SCCrowd Haiku Deck  that was created. Now on to Chat #2

Time for Q&A Day 2.0!

Here’s an explanation of how it works:      Are you a school counselor from around the world ? Then we want to share with you.

School counselors, school counseling interns, and aspiring school counselors…

Do you ever ask yourself, “What resources could help me with my initiative?” or, “How would someone else have handled that situation?” or even, “Is there anyone else dealing with the same challenge that I am?”

School counseling and other educational professionals…

Do you have knowledge that can help school counselors? Do you know of great resources or have inspirational experiences to share?

Then please Join us for Q&A Day on #SCCrowd on Tuesday, December 17th!

Using the hashtag #SCCrowd, ask a question that is inspired by something from your day (or anything else that might be on your mind). When you leave work for the day, check out #SCCrowd and see if you have an answer or follow-up to someone’s question.

Then from 6:30-7:30 MST and 8:30-9:30 PM EST Tuesday night, join for a live chat on #SCCrowd to help answer questions that haven’t been addressed yet.

Get answers to your questions and help others out there in the School Counselor Crowd! Ask a question, share and answer, join the chat. Anyway you participate can help you grow your PLN!

Q&A Day on #SCCrowd – All day on Tuesday, December 17th

Sponsored by School Counselor Crowdsourcing – @SCCrowd

Live Chat on #SCCrowd 8:30-9:30 PM EST, moderated by @rawolfson & @SSpellmanCann

Again we were pleased with the turnout for the second #SCCrowd  on December the 17th. Here is transcript 2 .

We really hope more school counsellors and educators from across the world will join us. This is a way we can collaborate with you and who knows what impact this will have on our professional development and most importantly the positive impact it will have on our students. Looking forward to seeing you in the CROWD #SCCrowd that is.

FYI:  If you notice we interchangeably use counsellor with 2 LL ’s and counselor with one L , here is why :

Canadian spelling 2 LL’s

American spelling 1L

 

 

Lessons for a New School Counsellor : Lesson 12 Take Time to Rejuvenate

Lesson 12 Take Time to Rejuvenate

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Here is :  Lessons 1-11

School Counselling can be a very demanding career. Although I dearly love what I do, I know it can be extremely exhausting as well as invigorating. We often hear difficult stories and that can be energy draining. For many students Christmas can be a tough time. It is important for us to take time to heal as well. I am so grateful that I can assist students with their concerns at this time of year, but I also need to slow down and pay attention to how I think , feel and act.

My student counsellor has worked extremely hard from September until now assisting students and their families with concerns that are not always easy. He too needs a break so he can regroup and come back to school refreshed. The following article discusses  compassion fatigue and is such an important topic for any new school counsellor, but also seasoned counsellors to pay attention to as well.

Click to access Self_Care_and_the_School_CounsellorArticle.pdf

Compassion … Be good to yourself …

So this Christmas season enjoy time with your loved ones, rest and rejuvenate , do something fun so that you can continue to make a difference in what you do.

Lessons For A New School Counsellor … Lesson 11

Lesson 11:

Lessons 1-10 can be found  here.

Engaging the students and staff is critical when it comes to school counselling. There are many ways to engage the students whether it is one to one or in groups. At the end of every session I check in with the student to see how the session went. I will often ask something like how are you feeling about what we talked about and did in session today? What is the one thing you will use as a result of our time together? This allows me to gage if I have been helpful and if there is something I said that the student connected with.

It is also very important to develop relationships with your staff. If they feel you are helpful they will most likely refer a student to you. We are all working together to enhance the success of all students so if students see us collaborating in their best interest while always maintaining confidentiality we will best be able to help them.

Engaging Staff. Get to know your staff. Take time to have lunch with them. It is good for you to take a break and get out of your office. Assisting students can be very draining at times especially if you are addressing more serious issues, so get out of your office and make time to recharge. Self- Care is important.

What are your ideas for student and staff  engagement ? Please share below.

I Will Remember … Will you?

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cc Image by Bill Barber

Remembrance Day is always a day of reflection. Our Remembrance Day Celebration at school this year was exceptionally well done. I had to choke back the tears several times during our ceremony. One of those remembered was Cpl Nathan Hornburg , a Bishop Carroll alumni who was struck by shrapnel during a mortar attack in Afghanistan while trying to repair his tank at the age of twenty- four ( the age of my own daughter) . I cannot imagine the grief and loss that his and other parents have had to endure. On this day Nathan’s dad joined us at Bishop Carroll in our Remembrance Day celebration. I could hear a pin drop. Our football team wore their jerseys in remembrance. As I looked across the gym floor I noticed one of our students with special needs was holding her hand over her heart as she sang O’ Canada. Another of the many touching moments. I must say I am so proud to be in a school where students , staff and many parents come together to pay tribute and remember.

Growing up on a military base I was surrounded by men and women who had a history of serving. My grandfather served in World War 2. This Haiku Deck is in tribute to him and the men and women like him who have served their country so that we may have the freedom that we do today. I am grateful.

Click here for : In Remembrance Haiku Deck

Below is one of my all time favorite Remembrance Day videos. It makes me stop and think every year. It is only a pittance of time.

 

I Will Remember This and Every Year Will You?
I Will Remember … Will You?

Canadian Coalition of Self-Directed Learning 2013

Click here for my @haikudeck   :   CCSDL Haiku Deck

Self- Directed Learning

“The basic assumption of SDL is that from birth to death, we live lives of learning: we first learn to function, then to live well, and finally to make a difference. Maurice Gibbons

What’s going on inside the building of Bishop Carroll is not only exciting, but innovative, educational and engaging. Not only are the halls of Bishop Carroll High School buzzing, but inside the offices of several educators learning is taking place.

Bishop Carroll High School , the oldest SDL school ( over forty years)  is a part of the Canadian Coalition of Self- Directed Learning.

Bishop Carroll works together with other members of the coalition to improve the self-directed experience of all the learners. These schools meet together on an ongoing basis as well as convene at a yearly conference to look at ways of improving the model for students.

As a staff member in a self-directed school I have never been in a school where so much focus and dialogue on instruction takes place on a regular basis. In fact, our staff has biweekly professional development meetings to ensure that we are able to collaborate on best practices and share new ideas. Teachers are continually focusing on how they can make things better for students in a self-directed learning environment.

This past week I attended the Canadian Coalition of Self- Directed Learning Conference in Edmonton. While I love learning about ways to improve what we do, I so love connecting with other educators face to face.

What are conferences about for me?

Celebrating: For me the best part of CCSDL conference is the students and what they gain from attending a SDL school. I loved the opening ceremony which celebrated students. It was very moving and reminded me of why I do what I do.


Here are some great videos from some SDL schools :

No Glory without effort:

Dancing Like A Model

Re Imagine High School

Check out the great video from Thomas Haney

Bishop Carroll Over 40 years of SDL

 

Connecting with our staff as well as others: Often times I am so busy with my day I get very little time to connect with other staff members. Conferences can be a time to do just that wind down and connect. I had so much fun with the thirteen people who attended the whole conference from my school. We laughed, had fun, shared and connected. I know this experience will assist us in being better at what we do in our school. We now have some great shared experiences that we would not have otherwise.

Twitter also allows me to connect with other great educators who work in SDL schools. A special thanks to @EricDemore for tracking me down . We had a great conversation and I look forward to staying connected. Also thanks to my new SDL twitter pals @CarmenGartner and @mrs_haddad

Collaborating: I was able to share ideas with staff from other schools as well as my own. I am sending this out on a google doc so that as many as want to can contribute at a later date.

Continually Learning: I have yet to attend a conference where I am not able to take back some ideas and use them. This conference was no exception. I loved some of the ideas that came from attending Garfield_Gini-Newman.



 

Collecting Resources: one of the absolute benefits of attending a conference is the resources you get and I love this resource from twitter:

 

A gigantic thanks to St. Joe’s for their books and treats and so much fun! I know how hard it is to organize a conference and you were all amazing. Kudos to you all for the hard work and allowing us to have such a great time.

Being A Connected Educator Has Changed The Way I Think

Being a Connected Educator has changed the way I think about education and has helped me understand the lives of our students in a completely different way.

Nine months ago I was not a Connected Educator, but I wanted to grow professionally so I took the plunge and took a Massive Open Online Course called ETMOOC.  That changed everything.

 

I felt if I wanted to understand the world that our students live in then I too must learn what it is like. So for the last nine months I have entered into the connected online world and opened up a whole new world of learning for myself and the students I serve. Every time I am connected with others online I come away with new ideas and resources to share.

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cc by Catherine Cronin

For anyone who feels they are too old to do this, I hope I serve as an example. I started teaching in 1980 and I can still say that I LOVE what I do. Being a Connected Educator has helped me stay passionate about teaching and learning .

I believe it has helped me be a better school counsellor as now I can connect with other school counsellors #scchat #cscchat from around the world and we can learn together. As a result of being a Connected Educator I am more open and want to serve as one model for positive Digital Citizenship for our students.

Thanks to all of you who have shared your experiences, resources and optimistic attitude with me. This thanksgiving I am very grateful for you.

Mental Health Literacy Training

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This week I was extremely fortunate to be Certified as a Trainer for the Mental Health Literacy Program facilitated by renowned psychiatrist Dr. Stan Kutcher

I was excited to be able to participate, as I have known about Dr. Kutcher’s work for a while. I am happy to say all four days were absolutely worth it. I left feeling I had learned many things that will assist me in my professional work and as a result impact the lives of the students we serve in our school community. I also loved his dry wit which absolutely kept me engaged during the process.

The training has fabulous resources for school counsellors, educators and mental health workers to utilize. This program is one of the best I have seen in a long time. It is rich in content, research, and resources.

When it comes to mental health we want students to:

CONNECT

  • With someone they trust like their teacher advisor , teacher, coach or other significant adult in the school who can then assist them in connecting …

CONNECTING

  • With their school counsellor who can assist them in connecting with their doctor, health care provider and or parents to assist them with their mental health concerns

One of important things that  Dr. Stan Kutcher discussed during the four days is the difference between:

  • Mental Health Distress (one example lose your keys)
  • Mental Health Problem (one example a parent dies)
  • Mental Health Disorder/Illness (one example clinical depression)

Too often we do not normalize what young people are feeling. It is normal to feel sad after a break up, but that does not mean the student is in a clinical depression. We need to teach our young people the difference between distress, problem and disorder and the Mental Health Curriculum Guide  does just that. It teaches students and educators the Mental Health Literacy that they need in today’s world based on present day research on the brain.

If you want to learn more you can take a quiz here to get you started…

Below I will share a few of the fantastic resources available. You may want to book a training in your area if you do contact @TMentalHealth

Digital storytelling:

Panic Disorder:

Coping with suicidal thoughts:

http://teenmentalhealth.org/resources/entries/coping-with-suicidal-thoughts/

Depression:

I really hope educators from around the globe will consider this fantastic program as part of any initiative that will benefit every student and family in their school and community.

Plan for Making a Difference Online

Making A Difference Online

Digital Citizenship

1:10-2:00 p.m.

             

 

Susan TOPIC Digital citizenship 15 minutes

  • Haiku Deck  ]http://www.haikudeck.com/p/seBRTsh6wd/digital-citizenship-bchs
  • Be a Digital Citizen (2mins. 13 seconds)

http://youtu.be/FdEXijFXfD8

  • Digital Dossier Video:4 minutes 23 seconds

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=79IYZVYIVLA&feature=share&list=PLvzOwE5lWqhRhUa0Zet5__9yfLX8NRvb3

Marc Global Citizenship

  • Global Digital Citizenship

Tremendous Growth of Easily Accessible Information

  • 1993 vs 2013

So much information, but…

  • Benefits vs problems

Tremendous Growth of Ability to Connect and Communicate

  • 1993 vs 2013

Ease of communication, but…

  • Benefits vs problems
  • In 2013, we have tremendous ability to access information and communicate with others…
  • In 2013 we have tremendous power to engage, connect, and advocate.
  • So what?

What is this ability for?

…or can we aspire to something greater?

Remember this?

Can we do better?

  • Syria – Civil War
  • Toronto – Street Car Shooting
  • KONY 2012

Peter Making Positive Connections

  • Remind 101

You can use social media to Make the World A Better Place

THINK before you post how are you going to do this?

 

What we want students to know:

  • Being online can make a positive difference in your life. Students throughout the world are doing great things online.
  • Act on and off line as if the world is watching because they are.
  • Learn all you can about being a good digital citizen. Google digital citizenship
  • Act with integrity on and off line
  • Be aware of your digital identity google yourself
  • Research creative commons and be able to explain it to a younger student.
  • You can build a positive reputation on line
  • You can be a positive creator
  • Your reputation is created by YOU

Digital Citizenship has a place in every school and we need to focus on the positive aspects of the internet as well as the things that concern us.

We want students to ask themselves:

  • What are the creative opportunities on the web?
  • What are the ethical dilemmas?
  • What are the rewards and the risks of being on line?

It is important to find great examples on the internet of students doing things to not only improve their own opportunities, but to improve the lives of those in their school, communities, and around the world. We would like to encourage students to look for these great examples as well.

I’d like to see schools focus on those students who Make A Difference Online by providing them with a scholarship that recognizes all the good they do online. Anyone interested in providing one?

Here is a great example of students doing amazing things:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qo2S1fdhGmo&list=UULSeLxP1JlUEmz_FKNZsXVQ&index=1&safety_mode=true&persist_safety_mode=1&safe=active

As educators we need to create our own digital footprint and model good Digital Citizenship for our students. Taking Care Of Your Digital Self highlights the importance of a positive digital presence.

When teaching Digital Citizenship we need students to recognize that they need to be the same person ON and OFF line.

We need to ask students:

  • If I were to look you up online what would I find?
  • What would you want others to find?
  • If your grandmother googled you would she be proud of what she found?
  • What is your digital tattoo? Find out more information at http://digitaltattoo.ubc.ca/

We want students at Bishop Carroll to show great citizenship skills:

  • Positive attitude
  • Proactive
  • Connected
  • Engaged Thinkers
  • Ethical Citizens
  • Entrepreneurial Spirited
  • Sharing,  and creation of new knowledge and learning to help others.

 

Here is an activity students can do.: Choose what happens next … a you tube video that is interactive

http://youtu.be/pGkaw44-Ql4

Digital citizenship is so important and what we do with students matters.