Work Smarter, Not Harder

After almost eleven hours of workshops and presentations this past week (has to be a record for me!) at three different venues, it was great to stand back and reflect on the various approaches and takes of the workshops.

It was a great compliment to be invited along to Alec Couros‘ class at the University of Regina last Tuesday night although I talked WAY TOO MUCH. He gave me an opportunity to chat about global projects (nearest and dearest to my heart) and about Women of Web 2.0 – another favourite topic. I hope his students felt they received some practical advice somewhere along the way. Alec has invited some crackerjack speakers in to his course this term and has graciously also opened it up so that many of us could lurk along the way.

I really prefer to present with others and, though the presentations went really well overall, I especially enjoyed presenting with some of my colleagues from LEARN for a variety of Qu├ębec educators on Wednesday.

The 15 Minute Challenge

We deviated a bit from our topic of showing off web 2.0 tools and spaces for classroom purposes to address the need to also use these tools for self-directed professional development. I introduced twitter and threw out the 15 minute professional development per day challenge originally created by David Jakes recently.

My colleague, Vince Jansen, did a great job of following my presentation spot about self-directed professional development with a few great visual metaphors to help explain how these tools make us work smarter, not harder. His approach to showing how these tools can really be used to bring it all to us in one place is worth a closer look.
Woods Snack Bar

First he used his favourite snack bar in smalltown QC as a way of showing off the variety of web 2.0 items from which we can choose to help us “work smarter”.

The WEb 2.0 Menu

Then he used Alan November’s idea about info-mating to describe how we can “Google-mate” our lives using google docs and iGoogle as an environment which brings it all together as a personalized dashboard for our own learning and organizing.

Quite a few of the workshop attendees (the brave ones who made it through horrible weather and driving conditions) were impressed by this part of the presentation in particular.

The above slides were taken from a presentation he made last August to some educators in New Brunswick.

Of course, NetVibes and PageFlakes are also great dashboards, so check them out if “Google-Mating” isn’t your thing.

My presentations from last week can be found here:

Demystifying Online Learning Spaces

Spheres of Influence: A Presentation to ETEC grad class at U. of Regina

The 5 Cs of the Interactive Internet: Collaboration, Communication, Construction, Creation and Content

We have to be willing to make mistakes!

Great pic of WOW2 being shown at a presentation by Miguel Guhlin at a conference (in Texas??) on February 5th.

Context is everything…. and I had to laugh when I first saw it! Miguel was making the point that we need to be “transparent learners”.

I haven’t yet blogged my experience of Educon2 due to a hairy schedule when I returned from Philadelphia – it gets even hairier next week!