Third Monday of 2018: I Will Encourage

At this time of year, we often experience higher levels of motivation, drive, even optimism than we will… say…right before spring break during the long month of March. Heck, I don’t even have a spring break to look forward to; although, I’m playing with the idea of taking vacation time and doing something with my daughter who will be in her last semester of high school this time next year. With that looking ahead mentality, I was thinking about this week’s #ICEindiana edtech resolution.

Who and/or what do I want to encourage in 2018? There are many combinations that make the list:

  • I want to encourage parents to be more engaged in their children’s digital footprint management and development.
  • I want to encourage my daughter to be more aware of how she is using her time online. When the fall of 2019 comes around, she won’t have mom and dad passing by and asking what she’s doing on her phone or Chromebook. She will need to have developed that internal voice for herself. Heck, her parents are still working on that internal voice!
  • I want to encourage district leaders to establish how they will specifically measure the success of technology integration in their schools. We cannot get better at what we are doing if we do not have solid evidence to evaluate or a clear goal to strive toward.
  • I want to encourage coaches to model responsible use by sharing privacy and data security evaluations of edtech tools before introducing them to teachers for use in the classroom.
  • I want to encourage classroom teachers to share their frustrations. If they feel like they are the only one striving to create a culture of digital responsibility and leadership among their students, then something is wrong.

As I look at this list, I begin to feel just a bit overwhelmed.  So I am going to take a play out of When, Daniel Pink’s newest book. He wraps up each of the chapters with a “Time Hacker’s Handbook.” Ultimately, I will encourage myself and those I support to try applying a premortem to projects they take on in 2018. The premortem is explained following chapter 3 and allows the project members to assume they failed at completing the project down the road (you know, kind of like we do with resolutions year after year).

To conduct a premortem, you ask yourself or the team, “What went wrong?” Taking the time to talk through “prospective hindsight,” you can identify potential issues and avoid setting yourself up for a false start. Pink says it better, so I encourage you to check out When.  Drats, there I go encouraging again!