#140WC Welcome Challenge #clmooc #etmooc

A Challenge

On November 10th, 2014 I made a commitment to myself and invited others to join — teachers, students, bloggers. The commitment? Write 140 words each day — 140 words more or less — but write — blog — everyday.  I wrote that challenge here: #140WC and continued each day since: #140WC posts.  Urbie Delgado has joined the challenge and posts regularly at Puzzling Mix.





Everyday I consider things I see, hear, read…. but they’re passing thoughts. So, why not take time each day and write. 140 words on some of these:

Do you gather ideas throughout the day?

Do you have ideas that meander through your mind?

Do you want to blog more but your topic hides?

Do you ever think, “I wish I’d written that down….?”

Then this challenge is for you!

Write 140 words each day! [or a little more or less — a thought each day!]

  • Share your ideas.
  • Share a link.
  • Share your lesson.
  • Share your reflection.
  • Share your questions.
  • Share your answers.
  • Share a tweet with your input
  • Share a blog with your insights
  • Share to carry on the conversation….

The benefit?

In a 140 words each day, your journey is formed, your ideas saved, your reflection framed.

In 140 words each day, your writing flows and grows more clearly.

In 140 words in day, your past and path is forged forward.


Will you join?  How about once a week? a month? 140 Word Count — you can do it!

Link to #140WC Badge

Join the #140WC Challenge

A Small Voice Gets An Answer




One Does What One Can

A Small Voice is Answered

IMG_6947Our dog loves this walk in the park below the transmission lines. She checks every message left by every other creature that walks here. And the scrubby elm trees provide the shade needed in our hot, semi-arid scrublands. The small watershed in this area provides home to all sorts of critters from red-winged blackbirds to killdeer to coyotes to, well, any creature needing a spot to rest or shelter from the heat or cold. And this is a place that many local residents [and their dog friends] visit regularly. We are fortune to have a place with trees, and we are thankful.

On June 18th, 2014, we took our old friend for her last walk here.


She was so old, Scott had to pull her up and around so she could keep her balance. It was time. And on this day to reflect, we arrived to this:



Crews cutting down our trees.

The area is managed by three entities: Bonneville Power Adminstration, United States Bureau of Recamation, and the local Coulee Area Park and Recreation District, who is supposed to be consulted about any changes or actions in the area.

Scott immediately called Bob Valen, the PARD Commissioner, while I took numerous pictures. I went home wondering what I could do. Helplessness is a terrible feeling. Meanwhile Bob Valen talked with the contracted crew at the park.

I had no idea who was cutting the trees down, but I organized my images into an animation video.  While creating it, I decided to tweet the issue, directly to USBR, who have been known to seemingly indiscriminately cut down trees on our walking paths. I also posted on Facebook, but that received a few local comments only.




— Sheri Edwards (@grammasheri) June 18, 2014


I even sent out a tweet on the benefits of trees — so many people have no clue how important they are to the environment and to the health of our communities. And for city crews, it’s just more work for them — so why bother?


By this time Scott had informed me that it wasn’t USBR, but was the Bonneville Power Administration [BPA]. And Bob Valen was trying to contact whoever was in charge at BPA.



An already stressful day with our dog was now doubly so with the possible loss of one of our area’s few treed areas for public play.

I returned to the park and took more devastating photos to add to the Animoto video.

trees gone


When I returned home, I found a message from Washington, DC Bureau of Reclamation who wanted to talk to me about my tweets!  I called the number, and the manager explained carefully that they had not been notified of  the clear-cutting, and that they were now in contact with BPA and PARD and were working on the issue. She was actually in town that day from DC and would check out the area herself. Wow!  The local USBR had also been contacted by DC wondering what was going on. I told her that those trees have been their for over thirty years, in a wetland area, and that local residents frequently access the area for walking. The local parks department has plans for the area, and the loss of trees would hurt wildlife and people’s use. I thanked her for taking the time to find out what the issue was for the community.

I persisted with Animoto videos to BPA since I hadn’t heard from them.


To be sure we were heard, I continued to try to reach BPA:

I never did hear from BPA myself.

But, a small voice received an answer from one of the powers-that-be. I tweeted a thank you.


And here’s what happened: the different entities worked together to find a solution, and only a few trees have been cut down since the initial invasion. If you look at the pictures, you can see that these are not your average neighborhood power poles — they are huge, and these thirty-year old trees will never get close to the wires.


This is the story of a small voice receiving an answer, and Twitter, a social media, got the attention needed to start the conversation.

Remember, “One does what one can.” We’ll miss our walks with Pooka, but we are glad for those people and furry friends that still have their shade.

legend sparrow.001

#clmooc Make Log List Reflection

Reflections and Connections

#clmooc             Make Cycle 1 Make Log


Questions from our Reflections and Connections suggestions:

What I’ve Made So Far

What did you learn from what you’ve already made?

What makes inspired you to try a new tool
or to explore a topic you hadn’t thought of?



Before #clmooc began, invitations provided announcements via social media so people could join. How could I help?

Terry Elliot shared a new app for me, canva.com. I created two invitations with Canva from his inspiration:

Join #CLMOOC  and Meme

I learned that CLMOOC helps me keep up with new tech apps that are very helpful in creating professional artifacts for teaching and learning. Canva.com is an amazing tool for this — I like it’s format — free and paid items so that everyone who can connect to the internet can participate. Equity is important to me.

Remix or Relearn Inspiration

Molly Shields inspired me in her blog post with her work and with this statement:

a maker is, first and foremost, a mistaker

This is a keeper statement, so I created two poster images for it:
Mistaker / Failure Quotes

Mistaker Visual Poetry
I’m not sure I can handle a Zombie Attack — I’m much too shy, and I was a way that day. But I so admire the idea and the people, that I had to create a Meme for participants in a way that I could participate [which is a tenet of #clmooc]:
These are not the Zombies you’re looking for…

Wordfoto again appeared this year, and I finally tried one. They have the potential for important messages. Sheri: Go boldly and scatter seeds of kindness

When George Salazar shared his beautiful penmanship, images of my past play with calligraphy inspired me to dig into the closet for pens and nibs and ink. Fortunately, the ink after probably twenty years was still usable.

Penmanship: A Thanks to George

When Terry Elliot shared his Learning Walk around his place, what he’d learned to do and not to do, I thought I would do the same, but with ideas from a walk around my town. Instead, as I began the captions in Animoto, the playful connected ebb and flow of #clmooc took over and inspired this invitational #clmooc learning walk:   Learning Walk ( also an invitation ).

As you can see, I relearned many more apps again this year, and hope they are an inspiration that others can follow.

 How Tos / About Me

Superpower: The week began with superheros and so I needed to discover mine —

As you can see, I’m an environmental water person, collaborating with others to save the world as my colleagues and I connect and create together, ready to add color and creativity to any situation, as my sunflower colors indicate.

One of my favorite ways to share is through Google Apps. In reviewing Chris Butts How To Guide, he mentioned ‘recipe,’ and since I do like to cook and have used this as an activity with my students, I created a story on a slide on Google Slides, which would contain links to images, artifacts, and videos of How to Be Sheri Edwards.
How to Be Me

In the spirit of HowTo Guides, I created How to Survive Ms Edwards Class in Thinglink for my students and families, as a talking point for our learning community. It’s small to embed in a sidebar of a blog or web page. #clmooc and the Connected Learning Pedagogy inspire me to discover how to create real and true learning in my classroom, instead of the rote and tote, teach and test, variety now in vogue. Please read an inspirational post at Hybrid Pedagogy for a How To and Why To of sorts this topic: Beyond Rigor.

Something New

So as my second year in #clmooc, I thought I better not be a slug, but should put my learning hat on and step up to learning something new.  Michelle Stein shared her telligami and I was hooked. I didn’t really understand it until her post. So thanks, Michelle.

My first one was a summary of our Make With Me for Cycle 1:

Gami on Make With Me June 17th

Gami Introduction to CLMOOC reflection for this Post: BlogAMonth Learning Walk )

Like Twitter, Gami requires you to be concise. I think this is good for kids to try — they both require a thoughtful wordsmith to get the message just right. Telligami is an iOS / Android app for mobile devices. In thirty seconds your avatar speaks your message in front of the background you choose.

And finally, TACKKS, which I reblogged here and can be found on TACKKS here. I wanted to try a new way to share my reflection list, and this seemed a good place to start since I can easily add my own or use their search for images, gifs, videos, etc. It’s easy to add headlines, images, etc. And there is a classroom edition perfect for schools.



What I’m Working On:

I’m currently working on Memes. I’m amazed how people just whip these out. It will take me a while to think of something. I’m wondering, how do you get started choosing an idea?

I’m also working on continuing to encourage others. I think this week I will learn a lot doing so. [See above paragraph.]
What I Want to Work On in the Future:
What I’m always working on: how do I implement this in my test-focused, objective-spewing situation? I think Scott Glass has the right idea. He suggests three ideas as important in his new 1:1 classroom in his “How To Ignore a List“:

  1. They will use their devices to create,
  2. They will consider what is meaningful to them,
  3. They will share their work.

See the Connected Learning concepts here?  This is my work for now and in the future; I hope I can inspire my colleagues as well.

About Makes
What did you learn from what you’ve already made?

I’ve mentioned this in comments above, but the most important things are those that are of connected learning:

Someone shares

It inspires

Interest is sparked

Peers support

Academics is embedded

Purpose is shared

Products developed

Openly networked

for a new cycle
What makes inspired you to try a new tool or to explore a topic you hadn’t thought of?

Terry Elliot, Scott Glass, Michelle Stein, Molly Shields, Kevin Hodgson all provide makes that are doable and remixable with plenty of support.

But it’s not just the makes; it’s the conversation that inspires — the peer support. When Michelle talked about her gami and provided links to information, that inspired me. When the superheroes appeared again and again with explanations, that inspired me. When Terry shared his self-conversation on his learning walk, that showed how our own interests are valuable and we need to share; again, an inspiration.

How about you? Is it the make or the conversation that inspires you?
What do you see as the purpose of making this week?

To me the purpose of this week was to see the value in others’ interests, which spark us to know we have things to share too. It builds community, and serves as a model for building community anywhere. Share. Learn about each other. Accept. Share more.
What were your purposes did you have in mind for making and sharing at the beginning of the week? How have they changed or remained constant?

The purposes at the beginning were to invite new participants and welcome them, but by the end of the week that was expanded to join in, jump in, and be a part of the playful learning– a community of support in learning.

How about you? How has your participation changed?

My grandson. He doesn’t learn this at school. Shouldn’t students be able to pursue their talents?

#clmooc The Inspiration Has Begun – Join In


The Summer of Make, Play, Learn has begun at #clmooc !

We’re introducing ourselves with avatars and inspiring each other to try something. In my writing classroom, making avatars and pseudonyms are one of our first goals: creating an avatar that fits our goals and personalities since we don’t use photos or our real names. And in #clmooc, we’re creating spontaneous avatars.

At left you see me, Ms Edwards, in a picasohead [ Make one here ]. I’m modern and fun, with a keen eye for critical and creative thinking, using my artist’s palette for choosing just the write words to color my ideas. See how much fun it is?

What would your avatar be? Edublogs make some suggestions here.

In the #clmooc community, we are inspiring each other with Marvel Comic Creator. This is an example of how we share our ideas and use them to remix the idea for our own needs. It’s just the beginning of a summer of fun and learning, connecting and collaborating.

Here’s my Connect 2 Learn Marvel Avatar:


As you can see, I’m an environmental water person, collaborating with others to save the world as my colleagues and I connect and create together, ready to add color and creativity to any situation, as my sunflower colors indicate.

So, join us — we need your inspiration too!

#clmooc How To Be Me Guide




Creating a How To Guide seemed daunting, but Chris Butts’s guide mentioned the word recipe, so that become my organizational structure.

Since this will be public and sharable, I thought I’d create a more generic image of my family. So I searched for apps that would allow me to draw on my images. I found Paint X Lite [free] for my Mac. It worked like a charm: I quickly added the smiley faces and hair to each family face.


Next I wrote my recipe:

How To Be Sheri Edwards

24 cupfuls of Family, sprinkled with humor and story
Several dollops of Home
Sprinkles of Pleasant
One gallon of Wonder
Generous tablespoon of Geek
5 liters of Learner
A ton of Teacher
A kilo of Kindness


Blend two families together carefully with humor and story to build a foundation for grandkids. Add in several dollops of home so wherever we are, we are family. Sprinkle frequently with piles of pleasant calm. Pour in a gallon of wonder daily. A generous tablespoon of geek tenders the wonder into creative ideas and solutions for the five liters of learner added next. Fold in a ton of teacher to inspire, along with the kilo of kindness to spread to those around us.

Spread out over the years and enjoy a lifetime of loving memories.


Next, I chose images for each ingredient, plus a couple extra.

I decided to share via Google Presentation, making the Preparation text an interactive set of links to the images and annotations for each step.



I then wrote this post so others could see my process and product.  Others can make a copy of this presentation to use as a template for their own, so it’s remixable!   Remember, you can click the “settings gear” to “File” → “Make A Copy” to use this as a template for your own How to Be Me Guide.  Have fun!

Thank you for learning How To Be Sheri Edwards. What do you think of this take on a “How To Guide”? What will strategy will you use to create your How To Be Me Guide?