Monthly Archives: January 2014



Image courtesy of jphilipg

For those who don’t know, I grew up in a small town in northern Canada. Until my early teens, we didn’t have much of a shopping centre other than the Coop Mall which had a grocery store, a hardware store, and a clothing store all of which were part of The Cooperative. I had no idea what that meant until much later in my life. You can understand then why I found it amusing that my television idol at the time, The Friendly Giant, talked about cooperation. I had no idea why he would be discussing groceries on TV. Weird.

Much (much) later in life, I found myself in a very collaborative MA TESOL program working through the differences between cooperating with others and collaborating with others. It seems so simple on the surface, but the nuances of working through material with two or three other people certainly helped refine my definitions of those two terms.

For the sake of this post, I will oversimplify my understanding of what these two terms mean. I will use the building of house to illustrate my point. Continue reading Collaborating


Image courtesy of Jack Hynes
I’m back! For those that actually read my blog, I apologize for the long hiatus. In keeping with the spirit of this blog and my single word titles, I give you my one word excuses: testing, marking, moving, celebrating, moving, searching, moving, buying, interviewing, accepting, learning, teaching, preparing, sleeping. There, does that help?

There have been a few things floating around in my mind lately (but only a few), most of them related to assessment. My current frustration is with ‘teaching to the test’, often associated with washback (not to be mistaken for backwash which is just gross). I am getting ahead of myself. Let me back track a bit. Continue reading Testing