If there is no sharing, there is no learning (David Wiley)
Over the last year, I have focused on becoming a connected leader and learner. Through Twitter (@kfilane), Facebook (Holy Angels School), Instagram (@hasrocks), and blogging I have been building up my online presence, have been connecting with others, and have been developing relationships that are crucial in education. Through my own learning journey, I have been modelling, and have been sharing and connecting with others – serving as a way to develop my Principal Qualification Practicum, and to develop my digital learning network.
As part of my learning and establishing my digital footprint, I took a chance and started sharing my learning and reflections in my blog:
Putting my thinking and wonderings out there for anyone to read was both exciting and humbling – would others care what I thought? would they see how much I didn’t know and how much I still need to learn? would they care what I was thinking? would my thoughts resonate with anyone? In my journey to be connected, I have developed an amazing network of colleagues, sources of inspiration, and models of learning that have taken my own learning and have exponentially helped me grow in ways I never would have thought possible.
A year ago, I was not able to attend a conference that really mattered to me:
Through that “missed opportunity” I learned more, and was set on a path of learning and connecting that I never knew was possible, and here I sit today, reflecting on my PQP journey of leadership and preparing to hand in my Practicum. Through my connected world, I have learned about the power of innovation (creating things that are new and better), I have limited the isolation that I once felt (“Isolation is a choice that we now make” @gcouros), and I hope that I have modelled for others the power of connecting, and taking risks in your learning.
“Leaders will more easily effect change if they allow others to see them taking risks, failing, recovering and risking all over again”
(The Innovator’s Mindset, 2015. George Couros, pg 59)
Today, I participated in a wonderful learning opportunity organized by our own Katie DiBiagio (SNCDSB), and Stacey Wallwin (SGDSB), our regional Technology Enabled Learning Teachers (TELTs) who facilitated George Couros spending the day with System Leaders, Principals, and Digital Learning Teachers from both Boards. The topic was Leading Innovative Change, and it was like the cherry on top of my PQP Practicum sundae – as a system, we were connecting and hearing the message all together!
Today, George inspired us all with his innovative mindset and his focus on relationships and connecting (first to the heart, before we can connect to the mind). I was able to share this day with people who have inspired me, influenced me and learned with me in this journey.
As a leader and a learner, I think it is vital that we build connections not only within our Board, our school and our communities, but also throughout the world, where we now have access to many others who are so willing and eager to share their learning. As this is the future for our students, if we don’t connect and learn how to be innovative together by building a digital learning network, we will soon become illiterate in the world that our students are living in.
By becoming connected, we build trust, and through trust, we transform systems: