Category: Weeknotes (page 1 of 19)

Weeknote 42/2016

  • Sending out Issue #233 of Doug Belshaw’s Thought Shrapnel, my weekly newsletter loosely focused on education, technology, and productivity. It featured links on CC0, broccoli, and ChromeOS alternatives, amongst other things. Many thanks to Makers Academy for sponsorship!
  • Recording and releasing Episode 65 (‘Licensing Educational Content’) of Today In Digital Education, my weekly podcast with co-host Dai Barnes.  This week we discussed Creative Commons Zero and educational licensing (main topic) as well as the Internet of Things, the best jobs for your personality type, and why learning to code shouldn’t be ‘fun’. You can join the community to discuss this episode of TIDE in our Slack channel!
  • Participating in Stoic Week 2016. You can see what I wrote in response to the prompts in the ‘writing’ section at the end of this post or by clicking here.
  • Meeting with Estelle Blanks from the Innovation Super Network and subsequently registering for VentureFest North East. I’m on a bit of a mission to get myself more connected and embedded in the region.
  • Talking with Simon Butt-Bethlendy about all things writing and consulting-related which I’m sure will lead to great things!
  • Catching up with Louise Thomas, now at the Innovation Unit, but who was at the RSA when we did some work with Keri Facer and others around ‘Education for the Apocalypse’.  The slides for the presentation Keri and I did around that at Learning Without Frontiers in 2012 are still available online. I’m hoping to collaborate with Louise on future projects.
  • Planning with my We Are Open comrades for the three sessions we’re running at the Mozilla Festival this year.
  • Offering my services to King Edward VI School, which not only is about 200 metres away from where I live in Morpeth, but also where my children will end up in a few years’ time! They were very keen on Open Badges, so watch this space!
  • Working on Chapter 2 (‘Nutrition’) of my audiobook, #uppingyourgame: a practical guide to personal productivity. I’ll be releasing it soon, and those who have already bought into the book will get a free update (the price increases with each chapter I add…)
  • Booking the conference room at London Connected Learning Centre for a couple of workshops on Wednesday 7th December. More details soon!
  • Having a mini adventure at Boggle Hole near Robin Hood’s Bay. It was recommended to me as a good family getaway by a couple I met when climbing Helvellyn, and my children’s schools had a teacher training day on Friday. We spent almost exactly 24 hours away from home, from 16:00 on Thursday, to about the same time on Friday. It’s recently had a major refurbishment along a pirate them, and we had a great time! Recommended.
  • Writing:

Next week it’s half-term, so I’ll be working less at the start of the week and spending time with my family. At the end of the week I’ll be at MozFest, and very much looking to catching up with a whole range of people!

Weeknote 41/2016

This week I’ve been:

Next week I’ll be doing some more writing, preparing for MozFest, running a thinkathon with my We Are Open colleagues, and catching up with various people. Wondering if I can help you / your organisation? Get in touch!

Weeknote 40/2016

This week I’ve been:

  • Sending out Issue #231 of Doug Belshaw’s Thought Shrapnel, my weekly newsletter loosely focused on education, technology, and productivity. It featured links on intellectual attractiveness, secretive empires, and productivity tips. Many thanks to Makers Academy for sponsorship!
  • Recording and releasing Episode 63 (‘Is EdTech a Discipline?’) of Today In Digital Education, my weekly podcast with co-host Dai Barnes.  This week we discussed whether or not EdTech is a ‘discipline’ (main topic) as well as examinations, how to remove profane posts from Twitter, creativity in children, competency-based hiring, and more! You can join the community to discuss this episode of TIDE in our Slack channel!
  • Working out of Campus North on Tuesday this week (I had to be at home on Monday). They finally got around to giving me some laptop stickers!
  • Meeting with my We Are Open co-operative co-founders on Wednesday for our October ‘Co-op Day’. We discussed lots of things, recorded here. I’ve updated our website, and Laura’s written a post about the workshops we plan to run.
  • Announcing a version two of my #uppingyourgame: a practical guide to personal productivity ebook from a few years ago. I’ll be refactoring it as an audiobook with six parts. In effect, it’s an entirely new offering, but using the existing ‘brand’. Details here, if you’re interested!
  • Pimping myself in the name of business development. Although I’ve got plenty of ‘leads’, I haven’t got loads of work right now. That’s either a huge moral failure on my part, or just ups and downs of being self-employed. Either way, I quite enjoy being able to feed my family (OK, it’s not quite that bad) so do keep an eye out for me…
  • Writing:

Next week I had blocked out three days for a client, but it looks that will have to be punted to later in the month. So more business development, I guess…

Image CC BY-NC Q Thompson

Weeknote 39/2016

This week I’ve been:

Next week, I’ll working from home and particularly looking forward to our monthly ‘co-op day’ on Wednesday 5th October. We’ve got lots to discuss and plan!

Weeknote 38/2016

This week I’ve been:

Next week I’ll be in Newcastle on Monday, working from home Tuesday/Wednesday, speaking at the launch of Badgemaker in Glasgow on Thursday, and then heading up a mountain to get in two Quality Mountain Days on Friday/Saturday.

Weeknote 37/2016

This week I’ve been:

Next week I’ll be working from Campus North on Monday, in meetings on Tuesday, flying to Jersey on Wednesday (afternoon) and then working with Victoria College on Thursday and Friday. Due to flights, I’ll not be back home until Saturday afternoon.

Work with me: Dynamic Skillset / We Are Open Co-op

Weeknote 36/2016

This week I’ve been:

Next week I’ll be in Newcastle and then Gateshead on Monday, working from home on Tuesday, in Sunderland on Wednesday, working from home on Thursday, and then pottering about during my Friday ‘Doug Day’. I’d still really like to get down to London for Futurefest next weekend as it was excellent last year…

Image CC BY-NC-SA Jonathon Hurley

Weeknote 35/2016

This week I’ve been:

  • Returning home after almost a month away. You can read my write-up of that here.
  • Re-connecting with people on Twitter, via email, and on our We Are Open Slack channel.
  • Spending time with my children, taking them to watch jesters at Alnwick Castle, helping our youngest learn how to ride a bike and tie  her shoelaces, and finding the best walking route to school for our eldest (who’s beginning Middle School next week!)
  • Agreeing a three-month sponsorship of my Thought Shrapnel newsletter from Makers Academy. I’m delighted to have them as a return sponsor!
  • Meeting with my fellow We Are Open members John Bevan and Bryan Mathers to discuss our upcoming thinkathon for Creative Commons around their burgeoning CC Certification program. Our other co-operator, Laura Hilliger, is on a road trip at the moment…
  • Discussing ways forward with CoderDojo’s use of Open Badges.
  • Losing half a stone in weight due to some serious remedial action in terms of nutrition and exercise. I wrote about what I’m putting into my body, and which books I found helpful here. I’ve also been beasting myself up and down sand dunes at Druridge Bay and have started running again (despite the increased migraine risk).
  • Setting up meetings for next week and the week after with people and organisations I think can benefit from what I can offer through Dynamic Skillset, and what we can offer through We Are Open.
  • Getting back in the swing of using an RSS reader in the guise of Feedly. Since I last used it, they’ve added a great new feature called ‘knowledge boards’ which I’ll be using along with my wiki for curatorial purposes.
  • Informing existing email subscribers to this blog that they’re now subscribed to my Thought Shrapnel newsletter instead. I include a roundup of posts I write both here and on other blogs in each issue of my newsletter. If anyone wants to subscribe by email to individual posts from this blog, they can plug the RSS feed into a service like IFTTT or Zapier.
  • Writing:

Next week I’ve got my calendar full of meetings. I also need to do lots of writing to get down all of the things I thought about while I was away! Bryan and I are doing some work with London CLC, and I’ve got a critical friend meeting with a client.

I’ll be taking Fridays off, as usual, as my ‘Doug day’. I noticed that Amazon are experimenting with 30-hour weeks for new teams (although at 70% pay) but there’s plenty of research that shows that people who work fewer hours are happier and more productive! As this article suggests, a four-day workweek is likely to be a recruitment incentive in 2017 and beyond…

Weeknote 30/2016

This week I’ve been:

  • Sending out Issue #225 of Doug Belshaw’s Thought Shrapnel, my weekly newsletter loosely focused on education, technology, and productivity. This one featured what learning looks like, augmenting humans, and the psychological benefits of writing.
  • Recording and releasing Episode 59 (‘LA Love’) of Today In Digital Education, my weekly podcast with co-host Dai Barnes. We discussed alcohol, web ethics, encrypted chat apps, what learning looks like, typing, privacy, the dark web, team formation, and doing small things with great love. This is the last episode until after the summer break, but you can always discuss TIDE in our Slack channel!
  • Spending the first half of the week in Los Angeles. I keynoted and participated in the Corona-Norco Unified School District’s Summer Institute on Digital Badging. My slides can be found here and I used Periscope to livestream/record my presentation (skip to around 03:45).
  • Taking Audrey Watters and Kin Lane out for lunch at a Mexican restaurant near their home in Hermosa Beach. It was so good to catch up with them, and we ate all the things while putting the world to rights…
  • Driving around LA in a Dodge Charger. Its 3.6 litre V8 engine is a bit more powerful than our Toyota hybrid back home, let’s put it that way!
  • Meeting Steve Ruger and others from Educators Co-op. Not only were they great people, but it’s so encouraging to see another education-related co-operative flourishing.
  • Working on case studies (to be used externally) and short videos (to be used internally across the City & Guilds Group) for Digitalme.
  • Submitting one of three proposals We Are Open Co-op have planned for the Mozilla Festival (closing date: Monday 1st August)
  • Booking the Eurotunnel and our first campsite in France for Team Belshaw’s month-long adventure in Europe!
  • Meeting Tony Venus from The Tech Partnership about overlapping areas of interest (digital skills, badges)

Next week I’ll be on holiday. And the week after that. And the week after that. And, er, the week after that…

Weeknote 29/2016

This week I’ve been:

  • Sending out Issue #224 of Doug Belshaw’s Thought Shrapnel, my weekly newsletter loosely focused on education, technology, and productivity. This one featured childhood memories, tethered beings, and the myth of productivity.
  • Recording and releasing Episode 58 (‘Tethered Cretins’) ofToday In Digital Education, my weekly podcast with co-host Dai Barnes. We discussed barefoot adventures, squabbles about education, Pokémon Go, childhood memories, big data for porn, tethered communism, open organisations, culturally contrived ignorance, and more! You can discuss TIDE in our Slack channel.
  • Working one day with City & Guilds Group in London. This was my last day working Group-wide as I’ve switched to working directly with Digitalme (a recent acquisition they’ve made). I updated the Open Badges 101 course that Bryan Mathers and I created and recorded some short video clips to be used internally.
  • Attending the Web Science Institute’s Ethics Symposium in London. It was an excellent event with some top-notch speakers. I was delighted to get the chance to speak in depth with leaders in the field and look forward to following that up. Many thanks to Anni Rowland-Campbell for the invitation!
  • Starting work on some case studies around Open Badges for Digitalme while working from home. I spent some time digging into Sussex Downs College‘s Ufi-funded project, and created a graphic of their employability skills-related badge system.
  • Feeling old as I watched my son’s achievements be recognised in his first school leavers’ assembly. We have a three-tier system in Northumberland, so he’ll be moving up to middle school in September.
  • Helping Sarah Horrocks, Director of London CLC, through our ongoing critical friend sessions. I’m genuinely excited for the work we’ll be doing together (potentially through We Are Open Co-op) next academic year.
  • Drafting a few session proposals for the Mozilla Festival which is at the end of October 2016. The closing date is the end of July, so get yours in!
  • Creating some thinkathon proposals for potential We Are Open clients.
  • Putting up our tent and new awning to get ready for our epic month-long camping trip in August.
  • Packing and getting ready for my brief trip to Los Angeles to speak at the Corona-Norco Summer Institute on Digital Badging.

Next week I’m in California until Wednesday night, then working from home with Digitalme on Thursday and Friday. After that, it’s packing time! As I’ve already said, I’ll be under canvas and away from everything apart from occasionally glancing at work emails during August.