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K-12

Top 10 Posts of 2022 and What I’m Planning For 2023

Happy New Year! Someone asked me for my New Year’s Resolution, and I said that I’m not making any — because I truly do try to improve every day. That may sound a bit braggy, but what I actually mean is that I am interested in accomplishing so many things that it’s impossible for me to narrow them down to one goal, or even a few. I’m not really proud of the fact that I can’t focus my curiosity. I even asked Canva’s Magic Write tool to help me come up with a better way to describe this shortcoming, hoping for a more flattering descriptor, but this is what I got:

I kind of like #13, “Jack-of-all-trades, mediocre-at-all,” but, frankly, even that one is a bit generous.

Anyway, I’m doing the standard looking back at the year to see what went well and what direction(s) I should go moving forward. It’s interesting to look at my top 10 posts for 2022. Some of the posts that did well are surprising to me. See what you think:

  1. Fourword Word Ladder Game
  2. Genius Hour Resources
  3. AI Generated Poetry
  4. Name Picker Tools
  5. Getting to Know You Hexagons for Back to School
  6. Blackout Poetry Maker
  7. Let’s Talk About Twos Day
  8. Gifts for the Gifted
  9. Interactive Google Slides Templates
  10. One Pager for Genius Hour in Kindergarten and First Grades

Coming up for 2023 I’ve planned a new self-paced course on Hexagonal Thinking that should be available soon. Based on feedback from workshops I’ve done, this is one of the most useful and flexible tools to elicit deep thinking teachers can use, so seeing that blog post in my top 10 isn’t surprising. In fact, Kelly Hincks recently referenced the post in an article she wrote for the American Library Association about doing Hexagonal Thinking with her students.

I’m also revamping the website to include my own marketplace, where you can download freebies as well as purchase some things I’ve personally designed. The freebies have always been available, but you kind of have to hunt for them on my site, so now they’ll be in one place. (Want to know my most downloaded freebie? Click here to see it!)

I’m also scheduled to present at TCEA in San Antonio with Amy Chandler (Assistant Director of Gifted and Talented in North East Independent School District) on January 30th, 2023, on Digital Differentiation. Come see us at 1:00 that day if you are attending(not sure of the room, yet).

Speaking of North East Independent School District, current teachers will have another opportunity to take the self-paced Genius Hour class we offered last fall for free. Since it was so popular, it’s been arranged to offer it again during the March Super Saturday weekend, and you can earn 4 credit hours! If you are not in NEISD, and would like to take the course on your own, I recommend the Course Bundle I have here. All participants also get invited to our private Genius Hour Facebook Group.

If you want to keep updated on all of these upcoming events and more, be sure you’ve signed up for the weekly newsletter — where you’ll also receive content not posted on the blog and special discounts!

Art, Creative Thinking, Education, K-12, Motivation, Philosophy, Student Products, Teaching Tools, Websites

Advice to Sink in Slowly

With many of us gearing up for the new school year, you might think that I am about to offer you my own advice on how to Sink in Slowly.  However, I am kind of a jump-in-the-deep-end-of-the-ocean-and-hope-there-aren’t-any-sharks kind of person.  When I ran across this post by Maria Popova on Brain Pickings, though, I liked the idea of advice from students for students.

Advice to Sink in Slowly is a website dedicated to the following:  “We help graduates to pass on advice and inspiration to where it can make a difference.”  It’s hosted in the UK, and offers posters designed by graduates in Graphic Design.  The posters are sold as a fundraiser, but the site recently offered some for free to all first-year students in the UK.  However, it appears their stock has been depleted.  You can access the catalogue here, but the posters that can be currently purchased are here.

Many of these would be great to display in a classroom – or even to show to new teachers.  It would also be fun to show a few to your students (but don’t set them loose on the site, as some of the images might be considered questionable for young students), and to see if they can design their own, kind of a twist on the “write a letter to next year’s students” activity.

by Chloe Trundle for Advice to Sink in Slowly
by Chloe Trundle for Advice to Sink in Slowly

by David Plant for Advice to Sink in Slowly
by David Plant for Advice to Sink in Slowly

by Luke Tonge for Advice to Sink in Slowly
by Luke Tonge for Advice to Sink in Slowly