Art is Therapeutic

Art washes from the soul the dust of everyday life

Pablo Picasso

I love painting. In the last while I have grown to love working with inks and alcohol. I love the vibrancy of the colours and the way I feel when I splash away and see what happens.

What joy it brings me to be in the state of flow on a regular basis. I wish that for you too. We could all use a little therapeutic bath right now. Try doing a little art and see what happens.

Just For Today Spinner

I like to use spinners with students and they like them too especially the little guys. Here is an example of a Just For Today spinner. You can make one too they are easy to do at wheeldecide.com.

You can also check out some of my other spinners:

Affirmations wheel

Friendship wheel

Gratitude wheel

Hope wheel

Positive sayings wheel

What can I do today? wheel

if you’d like to try another wheel maker click on how to create spinning wheels.

In Love

31 years ago when I was 30, I gave birth to our first child. She was six weeks premature. I was so scared , but immediately and profoundly in love. There is no experience like it that’s for sure. No one prepares you for the overwhelming love you are about to feel. That love never goes away, but the intensity of it ebbs and flows.

Today I am so grateful for the woman she has become. The two weeks in intensive care are still vivid in my mind. The moments in between can be a blur sometimes. How does time go by so fast?

The teen years were quite the ride, but today as I look at her, I am filled with the intense love I felt for her that moment she was born. Today, she is an amazing, caring, loving, kind, intelligent young woman whom I love spending time with.

Treasure all those moments , even the teen years they go by so fast. In loving our daughter, I became a better human being one who loves her child more than mere words could ever describe. Thank you for being born and thanks to the nurses and doctors who helped her live, especially my dear friend Darlene, one of the neonatal intensive care nurses. I love you my precious daughter. With you in it I know there is hope for a better world.

Everyone Has A Story

@sspellmancann

Especially during this time everyone will have a story of how they got through Covid19 or what happened to them , a family member or friend.

Our role as helpers will be to listen and support, no matter the story. It won’t necessarily be easy as sometimes we may be triggered when listening to others. We are not perfect, I know I am not that’s for sure. I want to give myself an extra dose of compassion at this time as I too have had a range of emotions. Maybe you should too.

We are humans and our humanity makes us people who are often complex. Being the best person we can be is a lifetime venture, filled with many bumps along the way. Through this pandemic many will have gigantic bumps to deal with, my heart goes out to those that do.

As you and I both navigate this chapter in our lives may we do it with courage , grace , compassion and help others along the way that are struggling to the best of our ability, because everyone has a story that they may or may not be willing to share behind the smile..

HOPEFUL THOUGHTS

You have a purpose don’t ever forget it.

What has this pandemic given you the opportunity to do ?

How can you grow today? What can you learn? What are you supposed to do today that is meaningful?

Feel all the feelings and journal away.

Compassionately listen to others.

Find ways to be in the flow.

What are the possibilities during this time?

How can you live and love fully during this time?

What can you be open to at this challenging time?

Find people places and things to appreciate even if they are online.

Tap into music, writing or art or whatever brings you true joy.

How can you contribute today?

Demonstrate your humanity.

Live love laugh …

Reach out … there is always someone who has had more difficult challenges than you or I have ever had.

Think of all the HOPEFUL things you can say and do.

How do you thank someone? … You can too …

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Thank you so much for stopping by my blog. It is hard to believe three years has passed since ETMOOC. I personally have learned so much in the last three years thanks to my ETMOOC PLN and especially Alec Couros. How do you thank someone who has made such a difference ? For us in ETMOOC it was by helping to create something that will hopefully make a difference for Alec, his family as well as future educators.

According to Harvard Social Psychologist Amy Cuddy people judge you on two criteria when they first meet you .

  1. Can I trust this person?
  2. Can I respect this person?

Alec Couros  @courosa has earned the  trust and respect of so many , but especially those of us in ETMOOC and as a result we wanted to do something special for him. Thus the Mario Couros Memorial Bursary .

Please take time to read the criteria below and if you feel like you too want to thank Alec by contributing to an award that honours him and his dad who meant the world to him, then please do so. Several of us plan to work hard this year to promote and get others to contribute to this award and we hope YOU will join us.

About the award :

The Mario Couros Memorial Bursary will help newcomers to Canada in reaching their dream of being one of tomorrow’s educators by providing financial assistance to pursue their Education Degree at the University of Regina. Mario came to Canada from Greece on December 14th 1957. He lived, worked and raised his family in Saskatchewan. He wanted to make a life and a difference for his family. Mario was a volunteer, a caring supportive father, grandfather, a loving husband and an extremely hard working man. He was a great role model for his children and others as he continued to be a lifelong learner with a fabulous work ethic until his passing. This award is dedicated in his memory.

It is also a tribute to his son Dr. Alec Couros who continues his father’ s legacy by inspiring and encouraging others to pursue their educational aspirations and follow a path to life-long learning.

The bursary will make a meaningful impact by breaking down the financial barriers to higher education and encouraging outstanding academic achievement. By contributing to this bursary you will enable Education students to focus on what matters most : their education.

The goal is to raise $ 25.000 to create an endowment that will allow for a permanent bursary at the University of Regina ‘s Faculty of Education. Your contribution to the Mario Couros Memorial Bursary will live on in perpetuity in memory and honour of Mario’s legacy. 

To donate online:

  1.                    Go to http://www.uregina.ca/giving
  2.                    Click the Donate Now button on the right side
  3.                    Click the In Honour/In Memory button

Enter your donation information and click add to gift basket.

Please ensure you enter Mario Couros under the second tab and continue to payment

If you would like any assistance with contributing please contact Erin Werner at 1-306-585-5432 or erin.werner@uregina.ca .  Those from other countries may wish to do so if they have difficulty contributing.  If you need a paper copy just email her.

You too can help !  Consider letting other educators know they can contribute to this important fund. Each contribution can and will make a difference. Alec has 99.5k followers . If each person following @courosa donated $ 1.00 we would have more than we need to keep this fund alive and help young people who want to be educators.

A very special thank you to all those in ETMOOC that have volunteered to promote this fund and all those who have already committed to contributing. I am so grateful for you . Kindness flows in ETMOOC ‘ers

I look forward to many more years of connecting , growing and learning with all of you. I think my heart is bigger today because of all of you.

Have you or someone you know been impacted by @courosa or @gcouros ?  You may want to really consider contributing. This post yesterday by @gcouros on “Has twitter changed our view?”  is very thoughtful and thought provoking. Twitter has most certainly changed mine for the positive. #lifechanging #friendshipsIneverwouldhaveimagined #grateful

REMINDER:
YOU CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE ! Truly think about donating, even if only a small amount and pass this on to someone who you think would contribute. TOGETHER we are better!

Please consider blogging about this award and sharing on twitter , facebook and google plus . YOU too can help to make a difference. Thanking you in advance. There truly are so many good people in the world and if you have taken time to read this blog post to the end and contribute. I know you are one of them.

Please let us know you have contributed by either DM ing me at @sspellmancann or by posting in the comments section so we can acknowledge YOU!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kindness is Never Forgotten

Hope made for me thanks to @mirshahi
Hope made for me thanks to @mirshahi

Today I decided to go with a new theme on my blog. I wanted a new fresh look to start off the summer. After a lot of exploration I decided to go with the theme you see here on my blog. I am using the picture of HOPE that was given to me by Ray Mirshahi @mirshahi. I love this picture for so many reasons. I hope you do too.

Here is how it all came about: A story by Cogdog.

By the way , I think I need to get back on the treadmill. Good things happen:).

So Ray, again I thank you.

Kindness really is never forgotten.

I used the photo you made me in my blog as a reminder to all to have hope. I hope you have a fabulous life!

Hope : A Message We All Need to Hear


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The following post was written by Vince Fowler a Business Coach, Speaker and Veteran in Calgary . He allowed me to share it with you. I think it is one of the best posts I have read, thus I am sharing it with you. You can follow Vince on twitter @VinceFowler

It would appear that the lives of most people who actively post on Facebook  are somehow living the perfect life – a life filled with laughter, with joy, money, friends, love, appreciation, amazing holidays, best job ever, best opportunities ever, etc … etc.

At times, it just might seem to you that everyone around you is having more fun than you, that their life is somehow better, more fulfilling and more rewarding than yours.

That’s just not reality.

Everyone has challenges. Everyone has fears. Everyone has pain … and I truly believe that we all have our own demons & skeletons kept secretly in our closets … under the proverbial  lock and key.

“Help” is something that way too many people have a hard time asking for … and when issues go un-addressed, people begin to lose hope. And when all hope appears lost, the only available decision left in the room seems to be the exit-life door … and then they’re gone… just as Robin Williams is gone.

Sad. So very sad.

Please – do not feel that my life or anyone else’s – celebrities included – are better than yours. Everyone is a little messed up in their own way … I know I am.

Just because I post my joys, doesn’t mean I don’t experience sadness. Just because I post my excitement, doesn’t mean I don’t experience boredom. Just because I post my successes and aspirations, doesn’t mean I don’t experience pain and failure.

I wish Robin Williams were still alive. He was funny beyond belief. He shared his talents with so many for no other purpose than to make them laugh. Sure, he was rich and famous … not because he discovered a way to monetize his talents, but because people actually valued his art and his craft.

That said, Robin Williams clearly had issues – which means Robin was a human being … which means he was just like you and me. Sadly, he wasn’t able to deal with those issues. Because he was loved and appreciated by millions, millions are now mourning his loss.

I once heard many, many, years ago … a man can live 40 days without food. He can live 4 days without water, but he cannot live 4 seconds without hope.

I don’t judge Robin Williams … I will miss Robin Williams.

Thanks Vince for saying what so many of us feel. Teens are particularly vulnerable at this time and we want to make sure they are safe. Your message is a message for all!

If a person believes there is no hope in winning a game,you can visibly see their efforts drop

If a person believes there is no hope in a relationship improving, they sometimes immediately break up

I challenge you to look around and observe on your own

As long as there is HOPE , even a glimmer of HOPE, people keep trying

By Vince Fowler 2014

I want a future where we treat all human beings with dignity, respect with understanding and compassion. I want a world where we have better treatments for mental health disorders and a world where there will be no future losses due to these illnesses. I want a world where all people are not ashamed or afraid to reach out for help. It is more than OK to reach out for help there are many places and people where you can. There is hope and I have hope that we can help .

Susan Spellman Cann

Resource for teens in CalgaryHearing Youth Helping Youth 403-264-8336

Adults can also call the Distress Centre : 403-266-4357 403.266-HELP

Resources to assist with hope: 

Click here: Livebinder on depression

Click here: Mental Health resources for teens

Click here: Suicide prevention resources

Click here: Depression Resources : High School Counselling

Click here: Haiku Deck on hope

Hope in My Ideal School … What Does Your Ideal School Look Like?

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After listening to Will Richardson’s blackboard collaborate talk I had to reflect on what it is that I would really want my ideal school to look like. I believe this will be an ongoing reflection as I continue to engage in my own process of learning in this digital age.

I believe I am very fortunate to be working in a self- directed learning model. I love the way students learn at Bishop Carroll High School. This model has been in action for over forty–years and is fantastic, but still evolving.

As I really reflect on what it is I would like to see in a school, the school counsellor comes out in me as my first thought is a school filled with HOPE.

Do hope and technology go hand in hand? I believe they most certainly can.  This video I discovered after receiving a tweet demonstrates the importance of HOPE. Shane Lopez’s interview expresses why I want my ideal school to be full of HOPE.

http://www.gallup.com/video/123893/Engage-Students-Improve-Community.aspx

The next video called, “If students designed their own schools” made me want what these students have done in their school to be a part of what I would want in my ideal school.

What might my ideal school look like? :

  • Hope filled
  • Engaged students and staff
  • Mutual Respect
  • Low student teacher ratio where all students can be heard and helped
  • Creativity is encouraged and abounds
  • Grades would not matter
  • Teachers would not ever feel they had to teach to tests
  • Counsellors would be essential in every school starting in elementary to high school
  • Counsellor to student ratio would be low and every school counsellor would not have to teach a class, but would engage students through workshops or through resources online or groups or whatever the schools and most importantly the students needs were
  • Exercise would be a part of every students and teachers day
  • Positive Connections would be evident
  • Capable, confident students would emerge and have opportunities to move in the direction of their dreams
  • Students would have available to them a variety of resources and opportunities
  • A students needs and personality would be highly considered
  • Safe Learning Spaces
  • The building would feel more like a comfy home than an institution
  • Students and staff are in a constant process of being technology savvy and literate
  • Professional development is ongoing and supported. Funding is readily available
  • Breaks where students and staff were nourished and had time to connect happen on a daily basis
  • Celebrations of staff and students occur on a regular basis
  • Passion is evident

I think I could go on and on, but for today I will stop here.

HOPE abounds in my ideal school, but what will schools look like in the future? I really am not sure.

After watching the video The Future of Education: Epic 2O20.  I have to really wonder are schools really prepared for what education might look like in 2020.

What do you think?

For today, my ideal school is right where I am.  I love working and counselling in a Self- Directed High School.  It makes me very happy and it is a very hopeful place where  I belong.