Coach Carole Ramblings

Celtic, Mythical and More …


4 Comments

#change11 – ‘Stealth Mentoring’

I am listening to Clark Quinn who is speaking to the gathered Moocers in Change11 via Blackboard Collaborate and creating this blog post at the same time. This is a bit of a ‘change’ for me – trying out my new model of ‘change by stealth’ on myself.
Clark asks ‘how do we actually learn’? and I ask that question often when preparing to assist elearners. The question is a useful one as it validates my process of making sure that I can reach those I mentor in a meaningful way.
One of the strategies I find happening now in webinars and conferences is the ‘learning from the back channelling’ conversations – and I’m seeing that in action in the text chat as I listen to Clark. Ideas bounce and create new knowledge in that flow of conversation – some confusion happens with choice of language and short pithy comments – but generally a new level of learning happens while watching the conversation.
Being able to pause and review is helpful to me as I learn what the speaker’s message is all about.

The diagram Clark has generated to explain an ideal learning environment – with the Sage on the Side theme,  really helped me to think through the new way of learning that is emerging.
Quote from an audience member “I just want to perform” – need that on a Tshirt – this conjured up a vision of the newlearner. (see my poor attempt at graphically describing the newlearner below.)

Clark clarifies the layering in life learning – meta elearning, concepts, performance support – he says ‘start making learning visible’ and embracing ‘learning out loud’. Showing the thinking helps us to internalise, synthesise and unpack through our filters. I agree with that and find that by ‘walking through a process’ with a newlearner showing my thinking will help them find the pattern they need.
Quinn says: “Humans are really good at pattern matching learning but not good at rote processing for problem solving” – advice – use augmentation to assist in filling that ‘gap’ – a learning GPS to help reach our destination. (Note: I think that Siri on the new iPhone is structured to do this – to me that sounds a little spooky.) However I do hear the expression ‘there’s an App for that’ more often now, especially now that I chat with many other iPad users. so maybe this is part of the new landscape of learning for the next few years. I know that having an iPad for my computing has helped me change and probably has changed my brain forever. (smiles)

Okay now we are viewing Quinn’s Performer in the centre – a diagram that shows learning activities on a continuum from reflective to active; formal to informal.
Noted the question from an audience member about not following and wanting Quinn to summarise his thinking about learning right now. (Having read Quinn’s blog posts prior to listening to him was helpful to me – my understanding is flowing – this emphasised the need for different ways for different learners to learn.)
Interesting to see Quinn talk about the difference to the learner and what he/she does after the learning moment, using the mobile learning device as an example. Mobile device can ‘locate’ you in your learning space and put things into context so that the learning is ‘captured’. (Note: I notice more and more of my Apps ask me do I wish to show my location – I usually say no. I notice many other Tweets that identify where the tweeter is – is that helpful? Does it make a difference to what i capture?  I don’t know yet?)
Improvements in the design elegance of the web shows the current technical sophistication that we are learning with – from Web 2.0 to Web 3.0 intrigues me – this is the future and how do we prepare for that? Personally I am a big advocate of user-generate content. I am in agreement with the comments coming through that we need to help newlearners to learn gradually and feel confidently prepared for how they will ‘learn to learn’ in the future. Adaptation springs to mind as I contemplate the Web 3.0 system-generated content …. plus I need someone to explain what the semantic web really means.
(Note: I am in complete agreement with the audience comment about self-directed learning – as opposed to directed learning.)

Stephen’s comment made me smile:
Stephen Downes
4:44 AM
That’s the tourist analogy – been using that for years – informal learning is like touring a city on your own… formal learning is like being kidnapped and taken some place you don’t want to go.

A thought in my mind is now ‘ensure that I ask my newlearners where do you want to go’?

Whoa, now we straying into the ‘sublime’ as Quinn shares his diagram where the Intelligent Learning Engine is at the centre. Sounds more like Cyborg stuff to me at the moment – but I need to remain open minded – maybe this is the model of ‘brain plug-ins’ that I have long desired.

Aha I heard Quinn use the ‘stealth mentor’ phrase – pausing and reviewing to check – yes, he did, try being the anaylst underneath to find out what happens to the learning and the learner when certain pathways are chosen. Help the learner to instinctively make the appropriate choices.

This brings me to the central issue that I am grappling with right now – ‘change by stealth’. Now I need to change my thinking from being about the Sage on the Side to being the ‘stealth mentor’ and how that might help me provide the right amount of guidance at the right time.

I liked this comment from Mike in the audience:
Mark McGuire
4:51 AM
@Stephen Downes That sounds good. Learning how to understand the morph, coming to terms with something that never takes a fixed form – a shape-shifting world in which our environment is in constant flux, and we are constantly changing through our engagement with it.

This resonated for me as a way of describing what it is that an stealth mentor needs to do and how they can pass that on to the newlearners. What’s your take on ‘stealth mentoring’?

 


Reflections: eportfolios 2008

Reflections from an Eportfolio project – Elearning Grants Victoria 2008

This text has been added from another space from another time – a chance to reflect on the process involved in mentoring a group of teachers in the development of a strategy for introducting eportfolios into the course for their students at Wodonga TAFE .
Date: Week beginning June 16

  • Induction workshop held in the Valleys Restaurant
  • Eleven teachers involved from across the TAFE
  • Confirmation of students to be involved is in progress
  • First digital images taken of the group
  • Cameras ordered, training rooms booked, materials distributed
  • Wiki page building by team members is in progress

Date: Week beginning June 23

  • Set up poll for student delivery dates.
  • Two new staff members join the group. (CSH) and (Learner Services).
  • One more staff member joins the group (NISTC)
  • And one more staff member joined the group on June 23 – (Learner Services)
  • All participants have now created their own page under Team Members
  • Workshop 1 research work is now underway

Date: Week beginning June 30

  • Lots of additons to the pages of Team Members
  • Some conversations, queries and issues being raised in the Discussion Forums
  • Project participants beginning to conduct further research on EPs
  • An Elluminate Live event scheduled for August 25th – featuring Allison Miller, Manager, National Eportfolio Project 2008

Date: Week beginning July 14

  • Six participants for workshop 2 were able to share their ‘e-portfolio introduction’PowerPoint assignments, upload to Slideshare and embed in their page as a widget
  • Some discussion about the content, the artefacts themselves, helped determine which artefacts each individual would include in their ep, and which one to begin with for presentation (see the Rough Draft) page for details
  • Considerable research and thought on the purpose and process of ep development for students is now evident
  • All tasks from workshops 1 and 2 are located as a downloadable file at the bottom of Workshop 2 for your convenience
  • Outlook calender invitation sent out for the August 25th Elluminate Live event.
  • Student workshop days discussed with staff participants. Student course areas attending on each day were identified as the following:
    Wednesday A116
    1pm – 4pm
    17 Sept – 12 Nov
    Events Hospitality
    Buidling and Design
    A116 Friday
    9am – 12pm
    19 Sept – 7 Nov
    Outdoor Recreation
    Landscape Design
    Interior Design?
    VCAL?

Date: Week beginning July 28

  • Project cameras have arrived and are ready to be hired out for the duration of the project. An email will be sent out today to advise participants on how to collect the camera for their department from help desk. Stay tuned.
  • Jon Bowdery’s second image workshop is on Tuesday A116.
  • Our photography skills were notched up a grade today – levels, colour, crop, resize, and save for the web.
  • Planning for weekly webinars took a step back today – we’re unsure of access to Elluminate Live so will need to rethink our online session tools

Date: Week beginning August 4

  • Classes in developing artefacts began on Tuesday 5th
  • One member of the group joined in a Skype chat with Coach Carole on Tuesday 5th
  • One member has successfully uploaded two fantastic photos to his page

Date: Week beginning August 11

  • Registrations for the Eportfolio online event in Elluminate Live on August 25 are approaching 100
  • Confirmed speakers and suggested 1 hour Program:
    Allison Miller – Brief overview – 10 mins
    University – Kim Hauville and/or Wendy Harper, from the Australian e-Portfolios Project (AeP)/QUT – 10 mins
    VET – Catherine Jones, Wodonga TAFE – 10 mins
    ACE – Lynne Gibbe from Coonara House – 10 mins
    Schools- ???? – possible Wodonga Secondary School and/or ATC Sunshine – 10 mins
    Questions/General Discussion: 10 mins


Reflections: ementoring 2008

Ementoring for the Hume group

Some reflections from another space, another time about experiences with the coordinators and managers of community centres in the NE Victoria. The text below reflects on my learning that took place during the project.

Date: May 24, 2008

This page will display some of my reflections over the duration of the ‘step into an elearning journey’ project with the ACFE Hume group.

This page can be viewed as an exemplar for personal reflective styles.

Date: May 26, 2008

‘Taking your first step
‘ discussion forum created to invite participants in to share their visions of where they want to be at the end of their elearning journey.

Workshop outline document created to provide a framework for the tasks, events, learning, reflection and mentoring that will take place for the duration of the program.

Planning for the first ‘live blog’ event to incorporate collaboration, instruction, discussion, facilitation, imagery, required reading and viewing in preparation for the suite of workshops to follow.

Date: May 29, 2008
Great excitement this evening as I welcomed our first new member to the site, Josie Rose. As each new member arrives I plan to send them a Request to become a friend and a Message of welcome.

I have also prepared a draft outline of the content for each of the activities listed in our Workshop Schedule and will send that out to participants in the ACFE Hume program for their approval, then attach it as a Word Document here in the wiki.

Date: June 04, 2008
The last week has seen great progress in getting the ementoring projects underway. There are nominated ementors for each ACFE region in Victoria and they are to be announced soon. I am proud to be one them.
The ementors will meet f2f in Melbourne on the 1st of August and we are each asked to prepare a 10 minute presentation about our progress with our teams.

The workshop scheduled dates have been approved by the Hume office and I’ll present those at tomorrow’s live blog with participants. Invitations for this event have been sent out and so far two people have responded. I expect that some will just drop in. Now we can get down to the planning aspect for this program.

Date: June 05, 2008
A group of six participants met online in a Live Blog this afternoon and we were able to collaborate on the structuring of our journey together. For some it was a ‘first time’ experience of synchronous communication and others said that they preferred a virtual classroom like Elluminate. The Live Blog intro enabled a simple first step as there was no download requirement or the need for special equipment. Participants could choose to contribute in text or watch. For me I found that it provided a gentle start to our building of trust as a group and I was able to gauge to some degree how to plan for their elearning experiences.

One important action for me came out of the Live Blog, I need to provide a Glossary of elearning terms in this wiki.

Date: June 11, 2008
This week I plan to make further communication with the group and to send out a simple survey for them to complete. The survey will ask them about their elearning capabilities and their workshop attendance, along with some questions about their innovative practices at their organisations. The purpose of the survey will be to determine how best to structure the ‘step into’ program for them and to enable their collaboration on the components they wish to explore.

Date: June 14, 2008
Today I have made some preparations for the first workshop to suit both the f2f and online participants. This is intended to demonstrate how a ‘blended’ approach might be applied. So far there have been 3 responses to the survey and 8 participants have agreed to join the program. 4 of the group have now joined this wiki and 2 have created their own pages.

I think it would be sensible to follow the tours and tasks available in the newly renovated ‘Designing and Implementing Elearning’ website at:
http://designing.flexiblelearning.net.au/index.htm .

Date: June 26, 2008

It has been one month since I began this ‘blog’ page and so many things have happened – as you can see from the above comments – we’re off to a fine start. Today I made contact by phone with as many of the group as I could and was able to provide some personal assistance, advice and tutorials. The telephone is still a good strategy. 🙂

Follow up emails will advise the group about our planned online meeting in Skype on July 7th and to choose a suitable time to suit everyone. This is scheduled during Term Two break when time is a little freer for us.

We now have 11 participants ready to go, 4 members have created their own ‘blog’ page, and 6 participants have completed the online survey.

Date: July 1, 2008

Rescheduled my trip to Mt Beauty today to see Yvonne, as the wet weather and windy conditions put me off that drive. Planning to stay indoors today instead and catch up with my e-learning. If anyone is reading this today I’ll be online in Skype. My identity there is coach.carole
If you are just setting up Skype please add me as a contact and let me know your Skype identity.

Date: July 14, 2008

We have successfully scheduled two Skype chats – one in text on July 5 and one with voice on July 14. Once again I was reminded to check if all pieces of technology are working for everyone – e.g. check that audio is not muted on PC or on headset!

I member has dropped out due to workload and time issues and I have not heard from one or two others recently – must give them a call this week.

Several personal ‘blog’ pages have now been created in our wiki and the group is feeling more comfortable in the navigation and purpose of our wiki. Planning for workshop 2 at Benalla is now complete and we look forward to meeting the group members for this f2f meeting.

Date: July 17, 2008

Yesterday’s workshop no. 2 was a real buzz for me as I watched the group enthusiastically using their new tools in this wiki with confidence and ease. I was apprehensive about which of our ‘virtual classroom’ tools was going to work. Repeated attempts with Elluminate Live failed; as did our access to DiscoverE – unfortunately this meant that we were unable to link up with our guest presenter Dot Waterhouse as planned. We then opted to try the Wimba Live Classroom and we had more success with that one. We stumbled through the various ‘blockers’ in the network we were controlled by and eventually gained access to ACE Room 1. No audio unfortunately – needed an IT technician to sort that one out – another learning curve. We were able to practice using all other functions and tools and it was a useful experience for our group – virtual classroom were seen with great enthusiasm as methods of enhancing learning for their students in remote locations.

We have planned to step the group through the process of creating their own Elluminate Live V room during our next Skype chat on July 21.

Date: July 27, 2008

Our Skype activity on July 21 brought together a number of the group members successfully to meet virtually with the ‘core group’. Once everyone was online in a Skype conference, I walked them through the steps of creating their free Elluminate V room then how to access and enter a shared Elluminate room. For many this was there first look at Elluminate and they were impressed. They decided that the Monday morning meetings should take place in there. (Some of the group wish to explore the use of Live Classrooms as part of their elearning plan – especially knowing that opportunity is offered by ACFE free of charge.)

Note: it was important to step into the virtual classroom slowly and to make sure that everyone could see its potential as a component in their ‘blended’ learning model.

The next focus for the group will be on ‘blended learning models’.

Date: August 15, 2008

Today we met at the beautiful facility at Mooroopna and Leeane was our hostess. We met Michael and Jill in the flesh for the first time and our group drew them into the community as friends on the same journey. Some initial round table discussions really enabled the group to air their concerns and to enthusiastically talk about their plans. A brainstorming session enabled us all to identify the critical benefits in using a collection of e-learning tools and strategies – these we put on the whiteboard. See below for the digital image of this.

We followed up by updating our pages in the wiki and then learning about some really cool social bookmarking tools: we all now have a Delicious account and we’ve shared these with everyone in our own pages. Click on anyone in the Hume Gallery to find their page and their shared bookmarks.


A Match made in Cyberspace?

Across my desktop today this article ….

http://www.edutopia.org/whats-next-2008-online-mentoring 

“The newest generations of teachers, like their students, have always connected digitally. As tech-savvy learners and communicators, they look online for inspiration and support. In the not-so-distant future, educators will seek and find personal and professional support through online portals where mentors will offer time, energy, and advice to their less seasoned colleagues.

These online mentors, functioning as colleagues and friends, will help weave another web of relationships to keep new teachers in the profession.”

Now this is food for thought! I believe that there will be a surge of online mentors joining the ranks in 2009/2010 as we begin to support more and more of the mainstream adopters into e-learning land. The art of mentoring is going to reach new heights, and I’m so glad that I’m already in that field of fascination.

Another great little quote, see below, made me think about my own mentoring methods. I like the idea of sharing stories of experience as a way of guiding and I often use my motto to demonstrate how I mentor online: ‘lead, follow and get out of the way’. It is really important to take the lead initially especially if your group is new to e-learning but collaborate with them as much as possible to check on what works for them. The middle part is perhaps the most important for the individuals, follow what they are doing and give them feedback and comments for improvement; share your knowledge and your networking with them in as many different ways as you can. Finally the end bit – look for the champions among them and give them the reigns – then politely and professionally, get out of their way.

“This virtual environment allows teachers to explore their fears and learn from mistakes without being judged by the teachers they work with every day at their school. Statistics show that new teachers are at risk for leaving the profession. These online exchanges can give guidance to such teachers, keeping them in the field. They can also rejuvenate experienced teachers who are looking for some motivation. “


Two down and two to go!

The CSTP course has exceeeded my expectations and I am having a great deal of fun in the mix. Jonathan has set us some ‘fun work’ to do between each live session. Focussing these tasks on something that we need to prepare for our projects and to ‘Elluminate’ it has been a really great idea. So far I’ve produced a set of Elluminate Live Calistenics activites (useful for giving participants a physical break in a long session online) and two web research activities for groups who are focussed on eportfolios.

I really like the way that Jonathan enables each participant to take part fully online and to blend their ideas into the content of the lesson. There is obviously a great deal of care and attention to the work we’ve submitted in the Ideas Drop Box before each session and this has encouraged others to think that their contributions might be highlighted at the next one.

The complete Ideas Drop Box is now full of fantastic ideas, with instructions for using them yourself, in our own Elluminate teaching or presenting events. What a terrific way to build a repository of ‘Elluminated learning objects’ that can be shared.

I wonder what Jonathan has in store for us in the next two live sessions in Elluminate! I know I’ll be surprised, amazed and engaged.

Let’s see if my animated exercise cartoons work in here?

calisthenics

calisthenics

I plan to come back to report on the final sessions in my next blog post.


Qantum Leap Forward

Next week I will leap into:

learning times certified

learning times certified

CSTP Level 1 program “Leading Effective Live Online Events” with Jonathan Finkelstein. We are scheduled to participate in 4 online events starting on August 11th for 1.5 hours each to learn teh following:

Workshop Description: In this four-part live online workshop — taking place over a two week period — participants learn and practice effective, practical and creative strategies and techniques for the live online environment. Concrete approaches for synchronous facilitation abound, as do ideas for the design of real-time activities that take learning and collaborating online to a whole new level. In addition to basic instructional design skills CSTP 203 will explore:

  • Effective live event moderation and facilitation
  • Fostering interactivity
  • Activity and content design
  • Game-based activities, live online
  • Exceptional use of virtual whiteboards
  • Shared web browsing
  • Creating interactive exercises
  • Application sharing
  • Audio and video options
  • Ensuring learning and meeting objectives are met

My goal in this experience is to soak up the word of wisdom from JF and to ensure that I can provide equally exciting and engaging professional development in the use of Elluminate Live for teachers who I am mentoring this year.

After this course I will plan to enrol in the next one:

CSTP Certification Level II
CSTP 405:
“Producing Professional Live Online Programs”

This workshop delivers a practical experience, taking students through every aspect of producing a successful interactive webcast for up to 250 participants, and culminating with an actual live event. Advanced techniques include: event preparation and management; development of a script and detailed “treatment”; enlistment and training of online guests and presenters; advanced content design, production and implementation; interactivity planning and facilitation; marketing and registration; and event follow-up and integration of live programming into an online community, web site, intranet and other online and venue-based activities.

This will ‘top up’ my own professional development and provide me with additional relevant credibility in this field for building that part of my elearning consultancy in the future.

CSTP certificate sample

CSTP certificate sample

Today I set aside some time to plan how to ‘capture’ some of the learning in a meaningful way and to store and display these in shared web spaces and, of course, my blog.


Two steps forward and one step back!

How can you maintain the forward momentum when obstacles and blockers keep getting in your way? This is the theme running through my projects this week. I know it is a temporary phenomenon and that things always do get back on track, but I wonder how others deal with the disappointments and the setbacks in this e-learning world of ours. What happens to a champion when the competitive edge is dulled; what happens to the coach when the team runs into difficulties? Do they run from the problem; do they quit trying? Do they often take two steps forward and one step back?

Reflection is one of the answers to the issue; and I find it useful to think through the issues from different perspectives. Is the project team under other pressures unknown to the mentor? Is the individual distracted by other life or work issues? What strategies can be used to kickstart the project afresh and motivate team members? Maybe its time to rethink the objectives and find out what the project team members are needing right now.

Morale boosting in times of extreme pressure might work! What about going the extra mile to provide some incentives? How about using the Reward, React and Response approach? Reward the achievements and efforts; react to the local issues and respond to the immediate needs of the team. Some of this might be totally outside of the business of the project, but could just shift the blocks and obtstacles and get them back on track.

Individual contact would be the best option to address these issues, so I’m going to carve out some extra time to talk to each team member. What’s the quickest and most effective way to get this happening? Is it the phone call, is the direct email or is it the f2f conversation. Timing and proximity are critical elements here. Phoning is hit and miss – so email first to set up a time to talk – then arrange for the f2f – then demonstrate how to use VOIP. IN other words, step them into a pattern on communication that is sustainable.

A one to many mentoring model requires some predetermined and agreed communication times. Agreement and committment to those events is a critical requirement for the group. Collaborating with the group on these events and being prepared to be really flexible is a critical requirement of the mentor.

However, it is necessary to set up some individual mentoring sessions to suport each person in their project tasks. Talk to the team to get their ideas on this.

So to get out of the ‘two steps forward and one step back’ phenomenon means PREPARE TO BE FLEXIBLE.


1 Comment

Looking back …

Today I revisited my sadly neglected Blog and realised what a rich source of learning I was missing out on by not keeping it up to date. From today, let me rectify that….

Live Blogging is my latest learning in the elearning world and I’m experimenting with its use to cover live events (either live online or in person). The software is free and pretty easy to manage and comes from http://coveritlive.com

Basically you’re creating a live commentary on what you are seeing and hearing and allowing others to follow that process in real time. It’s a bit like allowing someone to read over your shoulder when compiling your blog posts. You can write a lot or a little at a time (chunks of text, URLs, images, etc) and post that to you live blog as you write them – they are then added to the live blog as a time stamped entry.

On the side you can have a commentary panel for your invited guests. They receive an email inviting them to participate in your live blog which you’ve placed in an html page somewhere. They don’t need to download any software they just go to the site you’ve invited them to. You don’t need to set up a special website, you can simply embed a widget into a page anywhere and this is where the live blog entries appear and are saved.

It all makes sense when you actually experience doing one for yourself so be my guest and try CoverItLive. (Please do invite me along to share your live blog and I’ll join you if convenient.)

Here’s a link to a live blog I did recently whilst participating in one of the e-gems events. This live blog was my form of ‘note taking’ whilst listening to Kim Edgar’s instructional presentation about the use of LORN. By focussing my attention on what I was hearing I was able to take my notes in the order in which Kim was presenting them and if I was really quick I could multi-task even further and try out the sites she was recommending.

I’d be really keen to hear some comments from you about what you’re seeing now as the end result of this live blogging and let me know if you see any potential use for Live Blogging in your elearning journey.

http://innovate2integrate.wetpaint.com/page/Live+Blogs+2008 

I will also attempt to add a live blog here in this blog for your convenience. If I’m successful it should appear below.

 

Coach Carole


Mentoring: a new slant in 2008

As an independent elearning consultant I have many options open to me in the world of VET, ACE, Schools and Universities. I am not tied to any one institution and I do not have my time scheduled for me in classrooms. Scheduling is what I do for myself, taking on those projects that enable me to continue to be a virtual mentor and coach.

Most of my online work is linked to projects that are funded by the national Framework or by individual state based authorities. This year I will be extending the Innovate and Integrate program and providing tailored workshops and follow up activities for those interested in embedding innovative practices in their domains. In 2008 I am also revisiting the Knowledge Bank as a consultant and coach for their planned online events using Elluminate Live.

In 2008 my focus is on simplifying my online spaces and creating an area where I can lead potential clients to find out more about my skills and services as a one stop shop. I seem to have a plethora of web spaces in which I dabble here and there on one topic or another; wikispaces, wetpaint spaces, EdNA groups, Moodle modules, community websites and so on. When asked for one website to direct enquiries too, I need to make a choice based on the equirer’s needs. I need to consolidate all of that to make it a seamless process.

I am guided by other colleagues, also independent elearning or mlearning consultants, that my best strategy would be to have a web space that includes my name in the URL. In this way I will be found online by a simple Google search of my name, which is well known in the elearning environment.

So on to the new slant for 2008 – a one stop web space for Coach Carole.


Farewell to an FLL friend

Finally I was able to say farewell to a friend at the special Memorial for MarieJ at Port Campus of TAFE SA. I was so pleased to be able to attend this event and to hear how Marie was important to each one of us gathered in the theatre. I especially liked the smooth, easy, funny and poignant parts where we were reminded of Marie’s legacy to us all and reminded too of her lifetime achievements; her ability to ruffle the feathers of many a CEO; her little idiosyncracies that managed to endear her to all. I also liked the strategies chosen for us to leave some of our thoughts and memories behind – would you believe how useful post it notes can be; or textas and posters.

To then gather in the staff caf with a large number of her friends and colleagues was a treat for me – I consider so many of them my other interstate family colleagues. (Perhaps I will be able to gain frequent flyer points – just as I gather frequent friendship points.)

Thanks to Marty, Michael Coghlan, Bruce Enting (aka Robbie Weatherly); Jeff and Pauline; Adrian and other speakers for a fine farewell to a loved friend.

@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@@ 

Sad news was relayed in January through the FLLALL list which continues to link our Wollemi Ringleaders together in good times and in bad. Janine Bowes told us all that Marie Jasinski died on Monday January 21 in Hobart, Tasmania.

I write this through a vale of tears as I remember this fine friend, this brave woman and my first mentor. My most recent memories are of Marie and Marty at their wedding in June 2007 – a joyous occasion that I’m so glad I could be part of.

Earlier memories in 2006 are of Marie and I sitting at a restaurant in Glenelg where she interviewed me for her major research paper; Innovate and Integrate. Marie was always an inspiration to me at times like these, reminding me to be myself and to speak my mind.

Who can forget her wonderful presentations on stage as one part of the M & M duo; with Marty by her side and a suitcase of wonders. They always began these events by throwing out M & Ms for the audience – what a sweet way to remember her.

I will think of Marie often as I continue to unpack her awesome research that encourages and supports VET teachers in their innovative practices. I will think of Marie as I remember the conferences, the parties, the workshops and the myriad of good times we had.

My heart goes out to Marty who has been stoically by her side as Marie became ill and who has succeeded in uplifting, engaging and informing all of us of the last months and days in the ‘marchron blog’ – the Marie Chronicles will live on as a tribute to her love of life.

I will remember Marie when I contemplate my own mortality and think about her words of wisdom and her leadership.

Vale: Marie Jasinski – a woman of rare and joyous bounty. 

A special tribute for Marie is being held at the Port Adelaide campus of TAFE SA on Thursday March 6th, 2008.