What do you believe?
That’s the question / make this week for our #clmooc. I was honored to participate in the Hangout on Monday with an amazing group of educators. The Make With Me hangout discussed credos, featuring +TERRY ELLIOTT +Chris Lawrence +Chad Sansing +Bart Miller +Sheri Edwards and +Kevin Hodgson, check out the archive video and chat. I was nervous, and Terry did a great job facilitating, with help from others monitoring the chat. When you listen, you will here how we are all working in the #clmooc at our own pace, that we could be activists for our school to make changes, that what we do is a work in progress. For your credo, we talked about going with your gut, personalize it, and think about your students. Lots of great info.
How do you start writing a credo? I’ve always tried to connect my beliefs about education and learners to the vision of where I work. Here’s a page on how I connect our school’s mission statement to my own pedagogy. It seemed important to me to reflect on how what I do connects to our mission — how I make our mission happen. I read that before I started writing and after I read all the terrific examples provided by our facilitators for this week.
But then I asked myself, what is most important to me? At the top if this page is a motto I follow. So what does that mean? After talking to Terry (tweets) I created this video:
But guess what? It’s only remixable in Popcorn! I wanted it to be simple and clean, but represent what I know from my experience to be so important when working with middle school kids.
This is supposed to be connected learning! However, the credo is YOURS, so create away!
Is a splashly one like — I think it was Chris — dynamic.- more your style? Or a coded thimble like Chad‘s? or a flowchart / diagram like Bart’s? Will you join with others to create a manifesto?
Remember, go with your heart, try to consider the three elements of connected learning: equity, full participation, and social connectedness or social embeddedness.
I went back to the drawing board and listed what I believed in again. It depends on the context that you frame it. Here are ideas in a reflection from #etmooc. And– here’s my popcorn video taken from parts of my list, rearranged according to the three elements. It flows better with “I believe…” I wish the music would play through, though, and not stop at the pauses. And it’s still not right. It’s still too much, don’t you think?
But think about it: I’m doing all the things we want, we need, kids to do: think, plan, try, test, share, revise, review, think, plan, organize, share, try, test, review, revise, repeat. Add, delete, substitute, elaborate, illustrate, explain. Get the message clear. And that takes time, and with connections and feedback, it improves.
How will you create a concise credo to reflect connected learning?
A lot to think about, but then there’s this:
Just start with this and write…
I found an amazing pianist on SoundCloud: GracieGoose and her composition for a Main Theme: Short Film I used in the Popcord Credo, but you’ll want to here it without interruptions.
I have found one iron clad rule for successful organizations–if it doesn’t have someone like you, Sheri, it won’t last. What do I mean? For one thing, this post is a call to stop, to consider what has happened. It grants permission…no, it positively invites us to stop and create a space to just notice what has happened. I am certain sure, not sorta sure, that this stance comes from your teaching and ultimately from your character–patience of a high and active order, patience with a positive attitude. Do you know what a hen’s tooth you are? Truly our rara avis.
Second, you spring out of that patient spot to tell us what you did in particular and then immediately move us to act in specific ways, too. I think that you understand that the community is having trouble with this make. It is different. You have to really ante up here. Is that fair? I think you invite folks to work past their fears and toward their loves and beyond whether it is fair.
Third, we all get to see how you have wrestled with the injunction “to go with your heart’. It isn’t just a motivational motto coming from you. You show us how you have approached the credo from several angles like a painter trying to find the best perspective and light.
In the end you remind me of Candide who, after all of his fantastic travails and tragedies, says to Professor Pangloss, “That is very well put, but we must cultivate our garden.” You continue to be my Candide, Sheri. We are connected learners and you point out patiently and authentically that we have the key to connecting at the end of our mind–our fingers writing/making/digitizing. And you remind us of that in the little coda you pin at the end. It is a micro-credo–you thank someone you don’t even know who’s from somewhere you haven’t been. That is scattering seeds of kindness. I have a little hand seed spinner that use for spot seeding in the fields. When I am using it I am an unbeliever. How can this little act with these tiny germs of life amount to anything? Yet I become a believer as some of the seed finds a place in the world, roots and fills in what was once barren. That is what you believe, too. I know it.
Terry, It’s always a joy to read the images your thoughtful reflections create. Patience is an essential gift I believe all teachers open in order to allow learners the opportunity and freedom to learn deeply in their own way. Thanks for your kind words, and I so do believe that the seeds we plant will take root, even if not in the day or year we plant them in our students’ space. Thanks again for your encouraging words. They inspire me to continue my quests. ` Sheri
Great reflection and a nice invitation to others to not just remix, but remix and consider their own beliefs.
Thanks, Kevin. It’s been a great experience in this #clmooc to dig deeper into what fits with my own situation because the “makes” are doable and relevant, with plenty of examples by our members. Each of us adds to the mix so that others may consider and create or remix their own version, which in turn inspires someone else. And sometimes, people just stop by and listen to our conversations, letting the ideas simmer. That’s the invitation from #clmooc: Join, Lurk, Learn, Extend. Thank you, Sheri