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Saturday, July 14, 2012

Camp Snowball is over and everyone has gone home.  We had quite a beautiful ceremony to end the 5 days. It was all about honoring students.  We met teachers and students from New York and North Carolina to the Philippines.  It was a very empowering 5 days.  So thanks, Kirsten and Kelly, for giving up a week of vacation to attend. Greatly appreciated!  Watch for Kirsten and my interview of Jaimie Cloud, head of the Cloud Institute for Sustainability.  Kelly and I did an interview with Peter Senge and that will also be uploaded!

Friday, July 13, 2012

Camp Snowball, Day 4

Another exciting day at Camp Snowball!  This has proven to be a very worthwhile conference and one that is all about student learning, teaching and leadership training.  Our participation in Camp Snowball is thanks, in part, to the Waters Foundation, and to the generosity of Mr. and Mrs. Jim Waters, who have made  Systems Thinking in Schools a reality.  They have made it possible to bring together the best minds on systems thinking for this amazing conference and we feel so proud to attend!

Dr. Peter Senge continues to attend the conference and has amazing conversations with us about using systems as leaders.  His presence is always affirming and he is committed to helping us understand the intricate ins and outs of systems.

Last night, Ken Kay, Chief Executive Officer of EdLeader 21 came and talked to us about his blueprint to help schools and districts improve and innovate how to prepare students for the 21st century.  He calls it his 4 cs:  critical thinking, communication, collaboration and creativity.  Several of us here at CFSD have had the privilege of working with Ken.  He has an amazing set of skills and expertise.  He is someone who has his pulse on what students need for the future.  His book is The Leader's Guide to 21st Century Education, 7 Steps for Schools and Districts.

Here are his 7 steps:
1. Adopt your vision.
2. Create a community consensus.
3.  Align your system
4.  Build professional capacity
5.  Focus your curriculum and assessment
6.  Support your teachers
7.  Improve and innovate

This morning, we had a real treat, Dr. Tony Wagner, founder and co-director of the Change Leadership Group at the Harvard School of Education, spoke to us about his new book, Creating Innovators:  The Making of Young People Who Will Change the World.  Here is a great Ted Talk by Tony about his new book.

Tony Wagner’s Seven Survival Skills:


ECMS teachers Kelly Hawke and Kirsten Pelot are attending this event.  We are all taking different core module sessions throughout the 5 day conference.  Kelly is attending "Greening Your School District, Home and Community."  Kirsten is attending "Intro to Sustainability Education."  Kirsten and I had the pleasure of having lunch with the founder of the Cloud Institute for Sustainability, Jaimie Cloud. It was just Kirsten, Jaimie and me sitting around with sack lunches and talking.  What a great opportunity and we are so grateful for her time and generosity.   She so kindly let us pick her brain about our own plans to engage in activities that sustain our environment and give our students "a sense of place" in our world.  She is really an expert in her field and works to help schools become more sustainable. Here's a link to Jaimie's Ted Talk

Tomorrow's the last day of Camp Snowball!  More then!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Systems Thinking Conference 2012

I am at the Starr Pass Marriott attending Camp Snowball, the Systems Thinking Conference. Tonight, Dr. Peter Senge is hosting a Community Showcase. There is a panel discussion going on featuring Peter, Darcy Winslow, who was a senior manager for Nike and the newly appointed partner of the Academy for Systemic Change'Lani Simmons, Human Resources director, City of Tucson, Marve Adams, COO of TD Ameritrade, Stephen Ochoa is the owner of Frost, the gelato store, who was also an Orange Grove Middle School student some years ago. Fantastic advice from some of Tucson's finest.