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A borrowed rant, but one I can relate to

A good friend and former co-worker recently posted an open rant on FB after receiving a take-home package following the first day of school. While the spin is Canadian, I think lots of us can relate, particularly those with school-age kids.

<open rant> My school board has been taken over by lawyers! First day of school package includes: new policy on locked schools, warning that kids can strangle themselves in playground, numerous release forms for everything you can imagine (same info 8 times). My favourite form informs me that “participation [in recess] involves risk of injury, minor or serious, including permanent disability.” Here is my favourite part: “For specific examples of injuries related to the activity, contact the school.” Really?
Dear School Board Administrators: stop watching CNN and Fox. Please focus on providing an engaging educational environment. Stop teaching my kids that the world is hostile. We live in Canada!
Thank you.
</end rant>

So, where exactly do we start with this?

When did the start of school trigger a flurry of this kind of liability paperwork? Where have we, as a societly, allowed the public education system to degenerate into this politicized, litiginous, bureaucratic juggernaut? I dunno about you, but I’m starting to look for the remaining three horsemen.

StoryboardTrek – the Search for the Sweet Spot

I originally was going to make a comparison between Storyboards and educational quicksand, but having seen reactions to similar polemics, I figured I needed to adjust my stance somewhat.

The concept of planning out a highly interactive learning asset has its roots in film-making and – in principle – is a good idea. After all, movies are expensive enough to make without wasting time and film on shots that will end up on the cutting room floor. But the storyboarding process for media is pretty well understood and (I think?) follows some generally accepted conventions so you can(I think?) go from one production to another and make sense of what’s going on.

That hasn’t really been my experience with storyboarding for interactive learning assets. In fact, it’s anything but. Read the rest of this entry