Category Archives: Foundations

Tribal Leadership

“Tribal Leadership” by Dave Logan, John King, and Halee Fischer-Wright is a book which explores where people and organizations are in their thinking, or even in their worldview.   It is a very interesting book with many interesting stories. It also explains how to move up the chart so to speak (as well as how people and groups may move down).

Here are two explanatory graphs:

What Is Your Love Language?

In the last post, I highlighted the book “The 5 Love Languages” by Gary Chapman. While the book aims at married couples, the principles apply to all relationships. All of us have love tanks that need to be filled and refilled. Gary Chapman has a series of books in The 5 Love Languages series: For Children (highly recommended, For Teenagers, For Men, For Singles. These books are easy to read but highly impactful – I would say life changing.

A word of caution, start with yourself (speaking from personal experience here). It is very easy to see people in our lives who these books might “fix”. It is funny, that whenever I take the time to work on myself everyone in my life seem to magically get better.

How do I find out what my love language is?

Gary Chapman has a couple of very helpful sections at the back of the book, one of which is a question and answer section. Here is an excerpt:

1. What if I cannot discover my primary love languages?

“First observe how you most often express love to others. If you are regularly doing acts of service for others, this may be your love language. If you are consistently, verbally affirming people, the Words of Affirmation is likely your love language.

What do you complain about most often? When you say to your spouse, ‘I don’t think you would ever touch me if I did not initiate it,’ you are revealing that Physical Touch is your love language. When your spouse goes on a business trip and you say, ‘You didn’t bring me anything?’ you are indicating that Receiving Gifts is your language. The statement, ‘We don’t ever spend time together,’ indicates the love language of Quality Time. Your complaints reveal your inner desires. (If you have trouble remembering what you complain about most often, I suggest that you ask your spouse. Chances are that they will know.)

What do you request of your spouse most often? If you are saying ‘Will you give me a back rub?’ you are asking for Physical Touch. ‘Do you think that we could get a weekend away this month?’ is a request for Quality time. ‘Would it be possible for you to mow the grass this afternoon?’ expresses your desire for Acts of Service. (Your answer to these three questions will likely reveal your primary love language.)

For more information check out the website:

http://www.5lovelanguages.com/

Always appreciate your thoughts and comments.

What’s Love Got To Do With It? – Everything!

We started Romeo and Juliet last week with the Grade 9 + 10 English class. Mme Julie did a great job initiating a discussion about love and relationships. Some of you parents may have been asked the question: “Describe your idea of the ideal mate for me (your son or daughter).” It was also interesting to listen to the students share their ideas the qualities and traits of their ideal match. For this we separated the boys from the girls – quite interesting results.

What is the importance of the key relationships in our lives? How do you even assign a value to it? Imagine the value of information that would help in the area of relationships?

I truly believe that there are some books that can change a person’s life. One of these books is “The 5 Love Languages” by Gary Chapman. In the book, he explains the 5 languages of love and how different people have different love languages – just like personalities. He explains: “Your emotional love language and the language of your spouse (significant other) may be as different as Chinese from English. No matter how hard you try to express love in English, if your spouse only understands Chinese, you will never understand how to love each other.”

The 5 Love Languages are:

1. Words of Affirmation

2. Quality Time

3. Receiving Gifts

4. Acts of Service

5. Physical Touch

Here is a short video that illustrates the love languages:

The book is well worth the read!

Foundations – Media Fluency

While we are well aware of the immense amount of media and its tremendous influence, we often are still operating in a 20th century paradigm. The focus is on text and the many conventions associated with writing correctly and effectively. In their book, Literacy is NOT Enough, Crockett, Jukes, and Churches point out that in the 21st century more is required.

From the book:

It is critical for educators to understand that excellent traditional writing skills are not enough to make someone a good communicator in our multimedia world. Effective communication in the digital age requires more than the ability to produce traditional products like handwritten or typed reports.

Students need to be able to communicate as effectively in the graphical formats as we were taught to communicate with text.

Media Fluency goes beyond operating a digital camera or knowing how to create a podcast. It’s about being able to look critically at content in any medium, but it also involves choosing the most appropriate and effective medium for communicating an intended message and then being able to produce it.

Media Fluency means being a “prosumer” – an effective consumer and producer of digital content. So there are two components for Media Fluency: one for media input, or consuming, and another for media output, or producing.

Here is a video by Lee Crockett on Media Fluency!

Foundations – Creativity Fluency – The 5 Is

Creativity is often sited as one of the most sought after abilities in the 21st century. Often referred to as out-of the-box thinking, creativity holds the key to resolving many global issues. As well as leading to more satisfying and meaning ful life. Yet, numerous studies cite that creativity decreases throughout a student’s school years. Sir Ken Robinson, in the previous post, talks on how schools may actually kill creativity. There is a belief that says only  a few are creative – artists, perhaps dancers and musicians.

We are all creative!

From the book, Literacy is NOT Enough: “Creativity is the currency of the 21st century. Creative individuals and nations are poised to prosper. The new Third World will be the nations that have to import creativity. Let’s be clear. This isn’t about some far-off murky future. It is already happening. As routine cognitive work and manufacturing jobs are outsourced, the only jobs left are likely to be creative-class jobs – the jobs that require higher level thinking. Nonroutine cognitive work that can’t be outsourced, replaced by software, or automated will be in high demand. Businesses are turning to creativity like never before.”

In this video Lee Crockett explains the 5 Is of Creativity Fluency:

 

Identify: Begin by preloading your brain with the data of the current problem. Start by asking yourself what your task is and what you need to create. This brings meaning and relevance to the problem.

Inspire: Inspiration can come from anywhere: scanning remote memories, visualizing, flipping through magazines, going to a museum, looking at colour photo books or web sites, brainstorming over coffee, wandering around a bookstore, or listening to music.

Interpolate: The left brain’s job is to analyze the sensory inputs that are constantly arriving from the right brain’s playground of inspiration and to connect the dots by searching for patterns, alternate meanings, and high-level abstractions.

Imagine: As you toggle back and forth in the process from Inspire to Interpolate, discarding extraneous information, you start to home in on a possible solution. Continue searching, and the moment will come when the synthesis of Inspire and Interpolate unites in the birth of an idea.

Inspect: Does our idea meet the original criteria? Does it match our definition? Is it feasible? Will it work? Can it be accomplished within the existing time and budget?

Foundations – The 5As of Information Fluency

In acquiring a new skill there is a learning model called the four stages of competency. Stage one is unconscious incompetence; stage two is conscious incompetence; stage three is conscious competence; and stage four unconscious competence. In the book, Literacy is NOT Enough, when Lee Crockett, Ian Jukes, and Andrew Churches refer to fluency, they are intimating stage four unconscious competency.

From the book: “We define Information Fluency as the ability to unconsciously and intuitively interpret information in all forms and formats in order to extract the essential knowledge, perceive its meaning and significance, and use it to complete real world tasks. There are five distinct steps to the Information Fluency process: Ask, Access, Analyze, Apply, and Assess.”

Here is a short video in which Lee Crockett describes Information Fluency.

The 5As of Information Fluency:

Ask: Asking is about formulating relevant and meaningful questions that will lead to correct information.

Acquire: Answering the questions involves acquiring the essential raw data by accessing the most appropriate high-tech, low-tech, or no-tech sources.

Analyze: The raw information is unfiltered and unverified. Before it can be utilized, it must be analyzed and authenticated by validating sources to determine whether something is true or not, and distinguishing between fact and opinion.

Apply: Apply is the stage where actions are taken, problems are solved, and questions needs to be satisfied. Being able to access huge amounts of data means nothing unless the data is effectively analyzed, turned into personal knowledge, and applied to solving problems with real-world relevancy.

Assess: Assess is a critical step that is often overlooked. Once the information has been utilized, you must be able to reflect critically on the process, considering how each stage could be improved and which sources were most effective.

Foundations – Information Fluency

Never before has so much information been so readily available to so many so easily. This availability of information has literally changed the world in which we live – they way we learn, the way we do business, the way we interact with others and the world around us – to mention a few. Computing capacity, telecommunications, and storage capacity continue to grow exponentially every year, so the amount of information, and misinformation, is not going away.

In Literacy is NOT Enough, authors, Crockett, Jukes, and Churches point out: As result of Infowhelm, we now live in an age of disposable information, one in which the daily newspaper arrives out of date. Information has become a temporary and disposable commodity. Yes, information has value, but it is just about as perishable as fruit. It may have a value today, but it will have to be discarded if it is not used by tomorrow.

With so much information available, no one today can be an expert. If our students are going to operate in an age of Infowhelm, they will need to be informationally fluent.

In the short video below Lee Crockett gives us an insight to how much information is out there.

It is important to note that it is not just our children who are affected by Infowhelm. We all are – parents and teachers. How are we adapting?