Learning at its Best

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A Gnostic Gospel: Gradelessness in the Time of Covid

Originally posted on Only Connect:
From Amy J. Ko (Like many teachers, I’m suffering from so many feelings right now.  July is winding down.  I’ve been taking classes on distance learning, working on new units, and rethinking how to build a culture of caring, community, and creativity on-line, as it seems that’s the way things…

The Limits of Community and the Future of Going Gradeless

To what extent is grading an unexamined process that is part of a system that’s less about learning and more about sorting, stigmatizing, and sickening our children in pursuit of a perfection that is neither attainable nor healthy? Source: The Limits of Community and the Future of Going Gradeless

Assisted Accountability – The True Flipped Classroom

(Originally posted on the Edunautics blog) Eric Mazur introduced the flipped classroom to much interest a couple of decades ago. The idea—and a very good one—is that the time we have together in class is precious, and is being totally underutilized by a one-to-many dissemination of information. In the internet age, Mazur thought, why couldn’t we do … Continue reading

Value-based Learning: From Bakesale to Brilliant

(Originally posted on Schools all over are trying to figure out how to provide real-world learning for their students and many are beginning to realize how much a regular school schedule gets in the way of curating authentic learning experiences. Part of “real-world” is rethinking how we structure our time. I have previously written … Continue reading

Good-bye Joe

Tonight, my friend Joe Bower passed away after a massive heart attack a few days ago. He died with his family all around him. Joe was one of the first educators I interacted with via social media. During many late night chat sessions he taught me to question many of my basic assumptions about education. … Continue reading

One Day of Sharing and Caring

Previously I posted a plea to turn our gaze towards nurturing kids capacity to care in schools.  What follows is one example of what caring can look like and feel like (I’ll drop in some more photos when I have a chance)… 180 days of building towards this, the last day of school with my … Continue reading

Educating Towards a Culture of Care

Please excuse the “proud as a peacock” tone of the following post, but I must admit to feeling some pride.  This has been quite an emotional week for me. First, I attended my daughter’s 8th grade promotion marking her transition into high school and then, the very next day my son’s high school graduation. At these two events I’ve … Continue reading

Reading Between the Lines: MD’s Proposed Charter Legislation

March 1, 2015, by Helen Atkinson Preamble: In Maryland we have what some consider a weak charter law and what others consider as one of the best charter laws in the country.  How you view the law depends on how you define the problems faced by public schools in this city and in our country … Continue reading

Teaching without Knowing, and Finding Problems to Solve

(Originally posted on the Edunautics blog) I’ve already written about one of the key paradigm shifts that I think needs to happen in education: education needs to be real. See “Online Education is not the Disruption.” Now for two more. We want our students to become expert learners, right? Well, how are we going to get … Continue reading

Connected Learners. Connected Educators. Learning Together.

I have the good fortune every day of seeing the work unfold across the amazing community of connected educators in the district where I work. They seek to understand contemporary learners and to offer learning opportunities that match the interests and passions of young people. It’s always a challenge when the prescriptive standards and state … Continue reading

Dear Chandra: “I Recognize You”

I just posted this at as part of a month-long initiative to encourage folks to write a letter to a beginning teacher. I could have written any number of letters, but this is the one that emerged on the night before the first day of school! It would be great to have others participate, … Continue reading

Welcoming our Newest Colleagues: Letter to A Beginning Teacher

The following was posted yesterday on  I would love to get contributions from south of the 49th parallel, so if this is something that captures your imagination, I would love to hear from you. You can reach me at or on Twitter at stephen_hurley Feel free to share the invitation with your colleagues … Continue reading

Getting to the Change We Want: Developing an Easement Mindset

The following is also posted at I would love to hear whether this concept resonates with colleagues south of the border! The degree to which education systems in Canada (and elsewhere, I suspect) are going to be capable of the substantial change to which an increasing number educators, parents, students and politicians aspire will … Continue reading

re\wire: ni

[rewire: democratic surround meets networked individualism, it’s complicated] The time might be just right to finally indulge in the unthinkable/unbelievable dance.. of ongoing/perpetual/emergent conversation/communication with/in both self and (the entire) community/world. . a vision. In Rewire, Ethan Zuckerman encourages us to be the time for rewiring our potential to connect. To connect ourselves/others.. in voice/family/house/oikos. Perhaps we are experiencing just the right … Continue reading

Leadership Should Permeate Everything You Do

Today I got my annual “Happy Holidays” email from my Superintendent.  It never ceases to amaze me how she turns everything into something to make us think. Leadership does permeate everything she does. Here’s the latest from our Coop Catalyst friend and author, Pam Moran (and I post this with her permission.):   Dear Colleagues: … Continue reading

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