Connect with John Pisapia

Technology to the Rescue

Random thoughts from the Confernce Creativity and Imagination held in Kaohsiung, Taiwan.


Missed the bus to the University as did a couple of my colleagues from Finland – so we shared a cab.  They are at the East Finland University and are special educators – I have me many Finnish special educators on previous trips  – they know how to travel --  the older professor has a colleague in Nebraska who he visits with --  an insight to the Finnish personality – he likes it – says he went to a small town of 700 people and read the history – said the town was formed in 1879 and nothing has changed much since – he says that is the way Fins like - 

I asked the younger professor what he attributed Finnish high rankings on international tests.  His take was that most fins come to school having learned how to read – their alphabet is easier and phonetically its easier --  so much for the best teachers in the world --  I do believe that they were quite surprised by the results of the tests and self deprecating -  a Finnish trait?

Well we got to the conference ok – at Sun Yat-sen University – he was the brother in law of Chaing Ky Sec and was the president of China before he died and Chaing took over – I love Universities – always at home there --  and this was no exception – sits on the ocean much like university of Santa Barbara in California – it has old and new parts and is built around a central square think of the Field at SunLite stadium – around the field school in Kaesong had set up booths - to demonstrate their brand of imagination and creativity (theme of the conference) – around the fifty yard like there is the usual statutes – Sun and Chaing in the middle – impressive -  facilities are great --  internet hookups everywhere  

My faith in technology was rewarded today – I forgot the flash drive with my presentation in the hotel.  So here I was – I came a million miles to do this and was going to have to wing it– I apologized to the facilitator Donald Christie from the University of Strathclyde in Scotland – then I asked if can we hook into the internet --  the always helpful students (Denny) said yes – embarrassed I would try anything – so we hooked to my drop box in the cloud and were able to pull down the PowerPoint – impressed me but more impressed the people in the audience – so much for imagination and creativityJ

On the agenda with me was ZOE Boon from Singapore – on use of principals time – same as here – harried – Singapore is centrally managed but grants autonomy to principals in running the schools.

Ibrahim Bjunid from Malaysia – he was the former minister of education and by chance he was the one who funded the Institute of Educational Leadership at the Univ of Malay.  A James Manchin type of guy – who believes that the principal is the guardian of civilization. – wow!  Cited Darling Hammond that teaching is the profession that other professions are built.

After the session we went to lunch – guess what they served – well there was the usual fruit – and it was very good – tangerines – oranges - bananas are plentiful – it is a sub-tropical region – but the crowning glory was a sandwich from Subway ---  I came a million miles for a subway sandwich?  - but it was fresh – the bread was a little different – we grabbed our lunch pulled up four chairs and talked – one of the keynoters came by and Ibrahim jumps up and wants to get his picture with him – I explain to Zoe and Don that that was an example of bridging in action – they all recognized the behavior and soon we all had our picture taken with Professor WU the local guru.

John Pisapia 2011

Join one of SLN's Global Learning Communities!

t      tt  b
on Facebook