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We need Engaged Educators

by Silvia Rosenthal Tolisano

Cross posted to the Langwitches Blog

All our best strategies, plans, projects, initiatives, etc. will all come to nothing and fizzle out, if we, as educators (Yes, I am also talking about teachers AND administrators) are NOT engaged as leaders and learners.

WE NEED ENGAGED EDUCATORS who:

  • are self-motivated and self-directed
  • give as much as they are taking from other educators
  • are flexible, innovative and willing to take risks
  • contribute and take an active part in a global conversation via their expertise, perspectives, shareable content and their time
  • understand that sharing is a moral imperative in a global network of educators and learners
  • are invested in their own learning

Are you engaged as a leader and learner ?

engaged-educators-tolisano

 

10 Tips to Get Started with Sketchnoting

by Silvia Rosenthal Tolisano
cross posted to Langwitches Blog

I facilitated a workshop at Miami Device this past week. Most conference sessions feel rushed with only 45-60 minutes to share, but thanks to Felix Jacomino‘s the genius mind behind the conference, scheduled my 10 Tips to Get Started with Sketchnoting workshop for 2 hours! It gave us the opportunity to DO what we were talking about. Participants were able to practice sketching the content of the workshop as they were learning about sketchnoting! We walked, step by step, through building a sketch by remembering these 10 tips:

  1. Remembering that you don’t have to be an artist to use sketchnoting as note taking or to make your thinking visible
  2. Skethnoting is about ideas, connections, thinking, about the process , visualizing and organizing your thinking
  3. What can be sketchnoted? Books, TED Talks, Lectures, Articles, Brainstorming sessions, Presentations, Birthday Cards or blog posts
  4. Different types of structures: linear, columns, freehand, timelines
  5. Elements: connections, icons & bullets, containers, typography, people & objects
  6. Listening Tips
  7. Practice objects, increase your visual gallery
  8. Sketchnoting for: process ideation, note taking, mindmapping, reflection
  9. Tools
  10. Share: Although sketchnotes are supposed to make primarily sense to you alone, sharing them via social media allows others to learn from your perspective and your visible thinking

Sketchnoting-10-Tips10

 

Enjoy some of the participants’ sketchnotes of the workshops (for some the first attempt)sketchnote9sketchnote3sketchnote5sketchnote6sketchnote7miami-device-Jeannette-KostkaBy Jeannette Kostka

Along the way participants received the assignment to practice their skills by building their visual vocabulary. What are some concepts that you are passionate about, that you would, most likely, be trying to make your thinking visible? How would you be able to represent these concepts?sketchnote2 sketchnote4 sketchnote8

Participants were encouraged to practice throughout the rest of the conference their sketchnoting, in order to be meta-cognitively aware of their own thinking process as they were taking visual notes?

sketchnotesketchnote10

Sketchnoting another session at Miami Device by Tammy Neill

Sketchnoting For Reflection

By Silvia Rosenthal Tolisano

Cross posted to the Langwitches Blog

As a reader of my blog, you have followed my journey into exploring Sketchnoting since April 2014. I have come a long way by studying and learning from other sketchnoters: their techniques, their tools, their thinking process, their signature people, objects and metaphors.

If have gone from asking myself WHAT can you Sketchnote? to Sketchnoting as a Form of…

 

what-can-you-sketchnote

Sketchnoting-as-by-tolisano

 

I am experimenting with a variety of goals, as I am sketchnoting, wanting to be aware of how I react to each form in terms of my thinking process and learning involved.

  • Reflection : “We don’t learn from experiences, we learn from reflecting on the experience” John Dewey
  • Note Taking: How can we summarize main ideas visually?
  • Visual Thinking: How can we make thinking visual and visible to others?
  • Content Creation: How can we take concepts and content, in order to be able to share visually to appeal to a larger audience
  • Memory Aid: Doodling triggers memory after the event has passed. Visuals beat text when it comes to remembering
  • Process Ideation: Documenting the formation of concepts and ideas
  • Storytelling: Conveying of events through images and text
  • Mind Mapping: Brainstorming and organizing of ideas, thoughts and connections

I am specifically intrigued by sketchnoting as a FORM OF REFLECTION. As Visible Thinking Routines (by Project Zero) have proven to be very helpful in making thinking visible, I prepared an easy to follow routine to reflect when sketchnoting. Disclaimer: this is not meant to be a one- size- fits- all reflection routine, just one of many ways one can take advantage of sketchnoting to support a reflection process.

 

sketchnoting4reflection-tolisano

  1. Topic
    • What do I know?
    • What have I learned?
    • How can I apply what I learned?
    • How do I summarize in a Headline what I learned?
  2. Keywords
    • Brainstorm keywords about the topic
  3. Objects & People
    • How can I make my thinking visible?
    • How can I represent an idea?
  4. Connections
    • How does what I learned connect to what I (or others) already knew or will do
  5. Actions
    • What conclusions will I draw?
    • What are my goals?

sketchnoting4reflection-taxonomy-tolisano

Another routine is Peter PappasTaxonomy of Reflection

  1. Remember
    • What did I do, hear, watch, learn?
  2. Understand
    • What was important about it?
  3. Apply
    • Where could I use this again?
  4. Analyze
    • Do I see any patterns?
  5. Evaluate
    • How well did I do?
  6. Create
    • What should I do next?

This past week, I had the opportunity to facilitate a session about Sketchnoting for Reflection at the end of the 3 day ASCD Camp Connect21 conference in Washington, DC. It was the perfect moment to help participants become aware of their thinking and learning process as they reflected via sketchnotes of their learning experience at the conference. Next stop? How do we bring Sketchnoting for Reflection to our students as yet another tool in their toolbox.

Below find a few samples of the reflection results:

 

sketchnoting-reflection sketchnoting-reflection2 sketchnoting-reflection3 sketchnoting-reflection4sketchnoting-reflection5

How to bring Social Media to a Conference focused on Learning… not Technology?

by Silvia Rosenthal Tolisano

cross-posted to the Langwitches Blog

Social Media has given educators the opportunity for self-directed, collaborative and connected learning. Network literacy , according to Eric Hellweg, requires a basic understanding of network technology, intelligence, capabilities and the ability of crafting one’s own network identity.

So, how do you bring the benefits of social media to a conference without making the conference ABOUT social media or technology? How do you share the basics of connecting and learning collaboratively with attendees who are newbies?

The question is how do you bring social media to a conference (?) where:

  • most attendees and presenters might have heard of social media like Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest
  • maybe 30 % have an account in one of the platforms
  • at best less than 5% or conference participants are active and fluent on these platforms

The BIG idea behind bringing social media to a(ny) conference is to bring awareness to social networking for (and as) professional development, opportunities to practice these skills & literacies and create a culture  of sharing best practices and collaboration! How do we make it visible to newbies that it is NOT about technology, but about learning, sharing and connecting that learning?

I have been wrestling with the issue “It is NOT about technology“/ It IS about Technology for a while ( Never Was About Technology?– Time to Focus on Learning?, Take the Technology out of the Equation) and of course, it is not about the technology (it is about learning), but I am observing more and more educators , who are not comfortable with nor technology literate, are being left out of/ behind LEARNING opportunities.

How do we bring these learning opportunities to more educators?

I have reflected about the use of social media at conferences frequently:

How can conference organizers prepare for a conference and to be able to give attendees the opportunity to PARTICIPATE and EXPERIENCE the power of collaborative learning. For crowdsourcing, collaborative note taking and documentation from a variety of perspectives and locations, you NEED, well, a variety of people to contribute. It is imperative to not turn the conference into a conference about technology and social media, but make sure that the focus and emphasis stays on learning as we are using technology as an amplification and redefinition tool.

I have brainstormed steps in order to facilitate a “Watch- Do- Learn” approach.

Pre-Conference: Bring awareness to social media as a learning tool, introduce conference attendees to social media and networking and make further resources to learn more about social media available

  • Organized Twitter Chat or webinar
  • Creation of a Twitter account upon conference registration
  • Social Media resources available
  • Presenters and keynote speakers briefed and prepared to embed Social Media reminders into sessions

During the Conference: Give attendees hands-on experience, reflection and sharing time

  • Help Desk
  • Breakout Session
  • Tidbit sessions
  • Built-in reflection time
  • Mixed Cohort/ Social Media Team (Students/Teachers)
  • Presenters embed Social Media awareness and practice time
  • Backchannel Display: Strategic Location

Post-Conference: Reflective, connected, collaborative and networked

  • Reflective blog posts contributed to a central blog hub
  • Debriefing organized via Twitter chat or conference hashtag
  • Local coaching to connect and amplify learning when conference participants return to their home schools

 

Social-Media-conference-tolisanoWhat are some of your approaches/ideas to bringing social media for/as learning to conferences without making the conference about social media and technology?

ASCD Connect21 Summer Camp

Join the Curriculum21 team at ASCD Connect 21 Summer Camp:

August 6-8, 2015

The first ASCD Connect 21 Summer Camp
Becoming a 21st Century Teacher, Leader and School

ASCD_Connect_21_CampYou will create a personalized professional learning experience!

August 6-8, 2015 at the Gaylord Conference Center -greater DC area

TAKE A LOOK: http://connect.curriculum21.com