Sunday, February 07, 2010

What Do You Expect?

Been getting a bit antsy.

Homebound under 32 inches of snow. Schools closed. Shops closed. Streets closed.

I realize that folks in Alberta would snicker at our plight, but here on the Chesapeake we just don't get this kind of weather all that often. And so when we do, it all shuts down.

I've been thinking about how folks in the snowy areas of the world handle this sort of thing. Thinking about why three feet of snow doesn't mean a whole lot to folks in Buffalo; how Edmonton manages to go about its work at -30 degrees; how folks in Nepal have a whole other appreciation for snow accumulation.

And it's really just a matter of expectations. And I think there's something to be learned there.

Though I so often specifically talk about how social technology is not monolithic, I realize that I often talk about social media in monolithic terms. It's too easy to see my own situation as the 'way things are'; and I think we all have a tendency to do this.

As we move forward in this discussion, I want to hear more of the stories from the folks on all sides and in all sorts of situations. Because the worst thing a blogger can fate a blog to is a regiment of closed expectations.

I look at my ClusterMap and I see hits from folks all over the world. And I can not pretend to understand what all of you are going through in your own story of education. So tell me. Tell us.

I'm hereby asking folks who live outside the US to please get in touch about guest blogging here on TeachPaperless and helping us understand what education is where you are.

Just leave a comment to this post and I'll be in touch.


  1. Writing as I do from northern BC, I can say with a certain amount of confidence that no one snickers at 32 inches of snow (still less 90 cm, as it was reported here on CBC)--unless, of course, it's happening to someone else!

    Perhaps during the summer I can take you up on the offer and write some stories concerning my attempts (successful so far, but my students are still somewhat disoriented) at teaching paperless. I'll check back in late April...:)

  2. I don't teach outside the US, but in Connecticut. This is a private K-9 school with a boarding component. We cancelled school yesterday, expecting a deluge of snow. Instead, the parking lot and the playing field grass was barely covered. A lost day of classroom time for everyone, for nothing. Our head is a recent transplant from Virginia, so snow predictions and snow cancellations are based more on that model right now than on New England's.

    Here, there is no expectation that there will be a computer on the desk of every teacher. Our teachers say they can't accept student homework by email because they don't have reliable access.


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