By December 22, 2014 5 Comments

This post is supposed to be reflective and I guess it will be. I have had a pretty good year I think!

Here are my personal targets from last year…

1. Teaching & Learning – I’d like to organise a free (to educators) weekend Teaching & Learning event.

I organised Pedagoo South West which was a great day of sharing and learning. I was helped immensely by Rachel Jones, and Robert Massey and had lots of help too from many people from Bristol Grammar School, Crista Hazell, Betsysalt and Aleisha Woodley. It was a fab day and you can read about it here.

2. Write a new book. Something which doesn’t have anything to do with technology too. I get my kicks from helping move people on in a positive way. ‘Back to Basics’ was a legendary club in Leeds – there’s a lot to be said about getting it right with every class, all of the time.

I didn’t achieve this per se, but I did self-publish two books on the iBooks store; one on using Augmented Reality in education and another for Apple with my ‘One Best Thing’ book on Student Digital Leaders with both receiving hundreds of downloads. Sharing is so rewarding.

3. Start a new way of getting people collaborating on Twitter in order to collaborate and share ideas. Not too sure how this would work, but I’m open to ideas.

This didn’t exactly happen but I did organise some AppSmash sessions using Google Hangouts on Air. They were great fun and I’ve organised another one for December 30th if you’d like to join us.

4. Become an Ofsted inspector. Yes. You read correctly.

Nope – although maybe that isn’t a bad thing.

5. Continue to help people with simple problems they could probably Google but give them the confidence to try things out themselves too as a side effect of their interaction with me. I just like to help people out.

I have definitely done this. Speaking of Google too, I became a Google Certified Teacher this year which was something that had been on my bucket list for some time – I’m very pleased with that.

6. Find confidence that lasts and isn’t dependent on anything aside from my own values.

I’m lucky that I have some amazing friends and family who continue to support me. I couldn’t do half of what I do without them. Thank you. You know who you are!

7. Get back on my decks – I miss having a spin!

I haven’t done this anywhere near enough but I have managed to have a mix today!

The moon & the stars by Dj Mark Anderson on Mixcloud

I do still certainly love my music. One of the tracks in the mix is by John Legend. It is simply beautiful and whilst not a dance track, the lyrics are amazing. You can check them out here:

8. Support colleagues in ways which empowers them to achieve greatness in what they do.

With others we managed to transform the way that technology and eLearning was being used in my school. I’ve continued to be able to work with and support lots of other high profile schools with their use of technology and I’m really pleased to have been involved in this work too.


9. Become published in an academic journal.

Some work of mine has been published in other books. I’m pleased to have been involved in the #lightbulbs project, included in Simon Pridham’s ‘Freaked Out’ and Ross Morrison-McGill’s ‘Outstanding lessons’ books.

10. Complete more training sessions, sharing my practice, ideas and expertise to help have a wider impact.

I’ve done lots of this. Not only have I organised events, but over the course of the year I’ve spoken at a large number of events including more than ten Teachmeets too. Sharing your practice is important. It develops you as a person, puts you outside your comfort zone and brings more to your practice which has a direct impact on your abilities as a teacher in the classroom. If you are a school leader reading this, I strongly recommend supporting (perhaps with time to get to them and/or fuel allowance) and allowing your teachers time to attend Teachmeets for them to develop their ideas from attendance in your school. It’s a cost-effective way of supporting grass roots personal professional development.

11. Be a lead speaker at an education event.

I’ve been fortunate to be involved in number of events this year. My highlights include talking at Google HQ on ‘Learning with balls’ and at ITL’s Digital Learning Conference in London. Great sharing. Great people. Great learning.

12. Continue to make a difference.

I think I do this. Recent nominations saw me make it through to the finals of the edublog awards as having the best international edtech blog and also as best educational tweeter. This was really humbling and making it through to the finals of the UK Blog Awards too says to me that I must be doing something right.

14. To continue learning. One of the most exciting things about teaching a technology related subject is that I’m always learning. 

I’m definitely still learning every day. I’ve learned too this year some valuable lessons about trust and who my friends are. Thank you to everyone who has helped me this year. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Ok – so not a bad year at all! So what’s up next?

2015 is definitely going to be a different year for me. I’ve moved on from my current post although I have some meetings early in January which could see me still being involved with my old school. I’m pleased to say that I have been asked to work with a number of schools throughout 2015 already and that my Education Evangelist site continues to draw lots of interest.

In keeping with the rules outlined here, here are my 5 wishes for 2015.

1. Keep it real – with me leaving the classroom (for the most part), I want to still keep myself grounded. If you work in the South West and would like me to pop in and spend some time in your school, please get in touch.

2. Keep learning – like the technology I often talk about, things don’t stay still for long. I’m going to go against my grain and get myself some more technology other than the Apple technology I use so much of. I always talk about using the best tool for the job when it comes to using technology, I need to become even more familiar with tools for learning.

3. Be happy – like Herzberg, I’m not going to say that the opposite of happiness is unhappiness but there has definitely been some absence of happiness in recent times for me. I wish to make 2015 a much more happy year. I’ve managed to lose more than 4 stone this year which I’m happy with. I wish in 2015 to keep it off, may be lose some more and even take up yoga and some running. I hear it’s good for you.

4. Get the second book done – There. I’ve written the wish now. It has to come to true.

5. I’m going to keep my 5th wish to myself – as, just like with wishes when you blow away an eyelash – you have to keep them to yourself or they simply won’t come true.

Have a fantastic 2015 everyone. May your days be filled with joy, happiness, family and laughter.


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