Dec 01

McGraw Prize and What I Believe

[Kat asked me tonight if I do video blog entries, because as much as she and I talk about education, she said it always comes out differently when she hears me give a talk. I don’t v-log because I don’t want to do the post-production work that goes into a good v-log, but when other people have done that work for me….]

Back in September, the McGraw Foundation honored me with the McGraw Prize. It was an incredibly overwhelming night – one I didn’t write about at the time, because I really had no idea how to sum up how I felt. One of the most intense parts of the evening was having the opportunity to speak about the ideas we at SLA care most about to a room full of some of the most powerful people in education today.

The McGraw Foundation has made that speech (and the really lovely profile piece they did on me) public on YouTube, and in honor of Kat asking if I would do v-logs about what I believe, I’m posting it here.

(and the profile)

Mar 29

Two Quick (Online) Places To Find Me

In the past day, I’ve been fortunate enough to be featured in two video-chats. Thought I’d link to them here, if you want to see me talk about some of the stuff kicking around in my brain lately:

The Odyssey Initiative came to SLA this fall to talk to us. Here is the interview they did with me. (And it was featured by the US Department of Education in their Teaching Matters Newsblast! Wow!)

Chris Lehmann, Science Leadership Academy from Odyssey Initiative on Vimeo.

And yesterday, I took part in a really fun, spirited webinar called Inquiry: The Very First Step in the Process of Learning with which is part of the Digital Media and Learning Hub. Importantly, it was moderated by Elyse Eidman-Aadahl, Director of the National Writing Project, who is one of the amazing folks of the world.

Watch live streaming video from connectedlearningtv at

What was awesome about both of these experiences was that they were with really amazing organizations who are doing profoundly interesting and important work, and it was humbling and awesome that they wanted me to share what we’re up to at SLA with them.

More and more, I am becoming convinced that there are a lot of people who are pulling for a profoundly humanistic, deeply empowering, modern education for kids. It may not be the dominant paradigm in the country right now, but this movement is growing. Odyssey Initiative, DMLHub/ConnectedLearning and the National Writing Project are three important organizations in that movement. I’m honored that they wanted me to lend my voice to the chorus.

Nov 13

SLA by Design — First Interview

(Can you tell I finally have a few minutes to sit down and catch my breath? Three entries in a night!)

This podcast is an interview that SLA biochemistry teacher Gamal Sherif did with me at our November 7th Staff Development day. His goal is to create an SLA professional development newsletter, either online or off (or both), and we thought a podcast was as good a way to kick it off.

So… this is the inaugural moment of SLA by Design. Enjoy.

Nov 03

Presentation 2.0

So Marcie and I had this radical idea that we could put together a video podcast for the K-12 Online Conference. Piece o’ cake, right?

Well, except we forgot just how insane life is when you are trying to get a school up and running. So we finished one version of it, but we weren’t pleased. It was shall we say… rough.

But in the spirit of Web 2.0, we have SLA Movie 2.0, which is much more of a cohesive narrative, and isn’t quite as thrown together. And it was finished yesterday — a good week and a half after it was supposed to be uploaded… and the amazing K-12 Online folks dealt with our last second change.

So go to our entry in the K-12 Online Conference — Planning the 21st Century School.

(And thanks to the K-12 Online organizers and presenters for all their amazing work.)

Jul 11

SLA Faculty Podcast!

Thanks to Arvind Grover and Alex Ragone of 21st Century Learning for doing their podcast last Friday with the SLA faculty. A special thanks to Arvind who gave of his summer time and came down to Philly to help us learn moodle. He was a gracious and talented faciltator and trainer, and we got a ton out of the session. And then, after the session, he and Alex fired up the podcast and we had a blast talking with Alex and Arvind about SLA and 21st Century Learning.

So go give a listen to the podcast. I hope it is just the next in a series that we are able to do with Alex and Arvind about the progress at SLA. And I can’t wait until our faculty aren’t guests on someone else’s podcast, but rather our teachers and students are creating their own shows!

Jan 03

First Podcast

It’s a new year, and I thought I’d give podcasting a try. This podcast was inspired by Will’s post on reinvention, and it finds me thinking about reinventing our classrooms and schools, reinventing myself and reinventing the way we learn. You know… one of those "small idea" moments.

I don’t know how often I’ll podcast instead of write, but it is an interesting process, so I’ll probably experiment with it from time to time.

Anyway, enjoy Reinvention and the New Year.