About Me

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I have been an elementary and secondary school teacher and administrator. Currently, I am a faculty member in the Faculty of Education at Wilfrid Laurier University, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada. My M.Ed. and Ph.D. had a focus on the educational and linguistic experiences of children who moved from other countries to Canada.

Monday, June 26, 2017

Haiti Educator and Leadership Institute 2017: 4 week countdown

Yesterday, our Haiti group met for an afternoon of planning and cultural learning. This was the first time that the various participants met as a group and, with four weeks remaining until we embark, there was a lot of information to be covered. I am always amazed at the various strengths of the groups that have engaged in our initiatives in Haiti and this year's group is no different.

The core of what we do in Haiti is represented by the instructors and assistants who instruct professional learning courses in the Educator and Leadership Institute (ELI). This year we have 16 instructors and assistants who will be teaching 12 courses. It is quite the logistical challenge to coordinate the courses, activities, and resources but our instructors seem up to the challenge once again. They are already discussing and planning for how to model experiential and active learning in their classrooms in Haiti.

Our Laurier teacher candidates and recent graduates are also key to a successful ELI. They have been working on developing activities in science, engineering, ecology, and the arts for a camp involving 100-150 Haitian children. With assistance from Canadian and Haitian high school students, this group includes three Laurier alumni who participated last year and who are providing leadership for the camp. They also will be involved in an English as a Second Language program for Haitian university students each afternoon which is always a highlight.

A number of other key individuals and organizations are represented in this year's ELI. First, Desire2Learn is supporting three employees will be leading workshops on online learning and assisting in various parts of ELI. Second, a long-term participant in our work in Haiti, who was instrumental in our BlackBerry leadership group, is coming with his family. He is now an executive with Apple and will be leading workshops on leadership and technology. Third, a group including university faculty members and a government researcher will be leading a number of research projects that are exploring the effectiveness of what we do in Haiti. Finally, coordinating the entire effort are a number of people with significant administrative skills.

There are 42 Canadians involved in ELI but we will be seen as ONE team. It takes a team to make ELI effective!

We are fortunate to have such a strong and diverse group. But what gives me confidence in the potential success of this group is the clear commitment to cultural humility and reciprocity, two fundamental values that we hold tightly to.

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