Fences, Wells & Mona Lisas

A couple months ago I heard a story that I haven't been able to shake. Our pastor shared the story from John 4:1-14 that I've heard a hundred times, but this particular Sunday he used a simple comparison involving fences and wells that really made me think. It was so simple...fences and wells. Ever since hearing the comparison I've noticed it relates to teaching, leadership, and innovation just as much as it relates to spiritual matters. I'm going to do some massive paraphrasing and condense the story down to a few sentences: In the story, Jesus asked for a drink from a nearby well, and was met by resistance from a person who believed it was against the rules. (Our pastor compared the rules

Simple, Smart Tips for Effective Technology Use

This blog post was almost titled, "The Role of Fidget Spinners in Education" but I got distracted and had to rename it! More on that in a minute... I'll never forget the day our school's first 3D printer arrived. I won't forget the few weeks that followed either; that's because the large cardboard box containing the 3D printer sat in my office collecting dust for a month or so. We simply didn't know what to do with it or how to even start. Admittedly, this was a time when very few elementary schools had adopted 3D printing technology, so our staff was blazing a trail to a small degree. We learned a lot about 3D printing the first few years, and this learning served as a catalyst to a powerfu

An Intense Focus

One of the things I like most about virtual collaboration is the diversity of thought that’s made possible regardless of proximity. I also appreciate seeing how different people approach the same professional learning experience, and how they also make connections to different ideas and books that weren’t previously on my radar. I’m hoping this blog post returns the favor in some small way. During the first week of our Renegade Leadership Virtual Cohort, I was struck by many of the different exchanges taking place in our forums and on social media. Maybe I’m still carrying fond memories of my doctoral research, but I really appreciated how one cohort member, Michael Miller, shared his reflec

#Stuconnect Twitter Chat

This blog post was guest-authored by Kyle Hoopes, principal at Grovecrest Elementary in Utah. Kyle is passionate about helping kids to make a difference in their world, and he’s got a special invitation for your students! Our Grovecrest Student Council got involved in the #Stuconnect Twitter chat for the first time last year. #StuConnect is a connected learning project that started several years ago as a cross-state collaborative podcast series, but has since evolved into an interactive Twitter chat that amplifies students’ voices all over the world. I’m trying to help my students establish a positive social media presence by providing them safe and guided access to our school’s social media

Dr. Brad Gustafson is an elementary principal, author, and speaker. He believes schools can be spaces where creativity and innovation thrive, but only when we prioritize relationships and a relevant, connected pedagogy. 


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