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Posted by on in UNward!


Wow! It wasn't a Dream. Betsy DeVos and US Secretary of Education are now synonyms.

When DeVos closed her first staff meeting at the Department of Education, she ended with a very Trumpian phrase - “Be bold, think big...”

Can you feel it?  The gale force winds of change have started to blow. It looks like we're all about to live through a blizzard of historic events. 

To um, "celebrate" we've geared up to document this unprecedented pivot for our grandchildren, future anthropologists, and life forms on other planets who are wondering what the hell is going on down here?

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Posted by on in UNward!


Like most young people and cats, I’m hopelessly curious and easily enticed by things that look different, move oddly or smell like a strange new breed.

Under 10, we call this wonder! North of 50, the adults in the room often call this foolishness.

I confess that my inner fool is still alive, and pops up like a jack-in-the-box when triggered by some fascinating discovery or new development -- which brings us to the year ahead.

As we gaze at the dawn of 2017, the view from my window is about as different, odd and strange as I've seen in my lifetime. 

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Posted by on in UNward!

Another packed room for the Dirty 30 v.4.0!

I'll admit it - I'm an edcamp  junkie. I love spending my own time on weekends or using my vacation days to go learn something new about what's happening in schools. I'm passionate about my craft, 24/7. 

Kyle Calderwood kicks off #tmnj16

Over the years, the edcamp  movement has exploded, but there is also another Un-conference  that is gaining major traction: TeachMeet. Today, I attended my third TeachMeetNJ in Toms River.

73 teachers partook in BreakoutEDU

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Posted by on in UNward!


“Be brave enough to start a conversation that matters.”    Amy Fast  @fastcranny 

As I heard that Barack Obama would be the next president of the United States, I sat quietly with my wife and daughter and savored the meaning of the moment. 

I was filled with the spirit of the possibilities the future held. I had no idea what kind of leader our new president would be. What I knew was that the faces of the masses gathered on election night 2008 shouted hope in a way I had never seen.

I saw how much the moment meant to people who could not hold back their tears -- and I shared that. 

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Posted by on in UNward!


Working with Vicki Davis, Angela Maiers and 30 other connect educators has been eye opening. Through them, I'm seeing how companies are engaging with educators on the very leading edge of social media influence. 

I’ve now had scores of one-on-one exchanges with these enterprises. Some have been large established national brands, others new ed tech startups.  The experience has provided a rare view of what these companies want from connected educators. We're also seeing what educators are getting in return.

Perhaps the three most important insights gleaned so far are:

  1. For those who want to make a difference beyond the classroom, there are abundant new opportunities everywhere.  This is especially true for educators with significant social media influence. (Most influential connected educators already know this.)

  2. There are also significant challenges, conflicts of interest and pitfalls to navigate. (Many are unaware of the myriad issues below the surface.)

  3. Finally, there is a massive gap between the value educators are providing, and the compensation they are getting. 

As it stands now, most connected educators go into these relationships with companies blindly.  Many have no idea what to expect or what will be expected of them.  Many  have no knowledge of what is generally acceptable and what is not.   It’s clear that all connected educators can benefit from having  some visibility into what’s going on in this rapidly developing love affair between connected educators and education marketers.  So let's start with the big picture...

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