Monday, October 24, 2011

You made all the difference

Yesterday marked the 1 year anniversary of me joining Twitter and in a few weeks  it will be the 1 year anniversary of me "going live" with my blog..

What a year it's been. I have connected with some remarkable educators, parents and students.  
My learning has been stretched to new levels.

While I can write, at length, about the incredible impact that social media  has had on my own professional learning - I want to dedicate this post to a group of people who took the time to welcome and encourage me as a new user.


David Wees @davidwees - for pointing out hash-tags like #bced and #cpchat

Patrick Larkin @bhsprincipal - just for saying "hi and welcome", and for  "publishing" an early blog posts on the #cpchat daily (that was an exciting moment)

Peter Vogel @PeterVogel - former teacher of mine who introduced to me Twitter months before I actually signed up and for giving me some pointers on settings, etc.

Cale Birk @birklearns - for, early on, "mentioning" me in one of his blog posts.

Chris Wejr @MrWejr - for reaching out, connecting, mentioning and  being one of the first to "RT" one of my tweets

Chris Kennedy @chrkennedy - for being one of the early followers and commentators on my blog.

Justine Tarte @justintarte - for being an early "affirming voice" and sharing my posts with others

Darcy Mullin @darcymullin - for always asking great questions on my blog

Today, more than ever, I am excited and eager to to continue nurturing all of my professional learning relationships whether through social media or face to face.

I am particularly grateful to these handful of "colleagues" who took the time to welcome me, guide me and connect with me when I was a "social media" newbie - it made all the difference!

My experience with these individuals is a reminder to always reach out to those in my community -  both on-line and face to face.  After all you never know when the "little things" can make all the difference.


  1. Well, that's certainly a nice gesture. I recall the half-hour, perhaps longer, extolling the benefits of Twitter, particularly in a TweetDeck-driven environment, that I spent with John.

    I must admit I thought it would be like many other sessions I've given, to anyone who will listen, in which I tried to convince colleagues of the importance of developing an online PLN and taking control of one's own professional development.

    Thankfully, as John indicate in his post above, he let that demonstration percolate until he made that jump.

    Now I'm trying to convince him of the merits of Google+, but that's a topic for another day.

  2. Johnny, I appreciate the post. EdcampVancouver was a turning point for me. Meeting some of the people I have been tweeting, Chirs, Gino etc. really put a face to the tweets. I have enjoyed learning alongside you for the last year and look forward to future collaboration. Heading to EdcampFV this year? See you there.

    Darcy Mullin

  3. Thanks Johnny. For all those mentioned in the article and so many more, you have made an equally significant contribution to their professional learning. I consider myself fortunate to be one of those who has seen the benefit.

    Tom Hierck

  4. Peter
    I guess my next big jump will be to Google+. I have lots of questions so I'll be contacting you!

    I totally agree about the Edcamp Vancouver experience being a tipping point. Still in the early days of Twitter and Blogging it was great to get some feedback. Unfortuntaly the edcampFV dates don't work for me (darn). I will be going to Edcampdelta. Keep well

    Thanks to the power of social media I now consider you colleague and friend. I'm not even sure if you remember, but the first time I met you was at the UBC short coarse many years ago - you were a facilitator and I was an eager student.
    I always look forward to your posts, insightful comments and hearing about were "in the world is Tom Hierck".
    Keep well and look forward to our continued collaboration and dialogue.

  5. Thanks Johnny for the reference - I always enjoy reading your blog. As many of us have said before - social media has connected us in ways that would be impossible without it.

    I speak almost every day about the power of a strong public education system and our efforts to help improve it - I also speak about all the kids belonging to all of us - regardless of district or public / private - your blog has been a way in to a different system and a reassurance that regardless of the system we want the same things for all of our kids.

    Thanks for being part of my network.


  6. Chris
    I always appreciate your insightful comments. You hit on an important point with regards to the public/independent school issue - while there are certain differences in mission/vision - there is far more we have in common than not. Social media has helped remove some of the the barriers and allowed me to connect with some brilliant educators both in the public and independent school system.
    Continued best wishes and look forward to continuing our conversation