Feb. 12, 2021

Creative Spaces #inspire

Creative Spaces #inspire

Did you check out our first guest appearance release with Alfonso, @MyEdTechLife last week? Be sure to tune in to myedtech.life/s1e43, where we spilled the beans on all the java goodies to kick-start our #3CCs joy project. It’s been a little over two months since we first started to ideate our podcast together across time zones, and it’s been such a beautiful journey thus far. There’s been a plethora of learning and growth and we are excited, so be sure to check out the episode to hear a little more about our WHY. 

If you’re wondering what kinds of coffee chatter happens behind the scenes between the 3 Caffeinated Coaches, then get ready for a down-to-earth dose of raw, because we’re about as real as can be in the world of education. We each come from different backgrounds and regions, and much of our conversation revolves around how our podcast idea came about and how we can enhance education through mentoring, instructional coaching, and leadership.  One of our three pillars is inspire, and although we’re going to dive into our pillars in greater depth over the coming months, we’ve been chatting a lot recently about where we go to seek out new inspiration to support our communities, as well as our own professional development. 

Coming from different backgrounds, with a wealth of different life experiences, means that we each bring a variety of interests and passions to the #3CCs table every day. Thought-provoking conversations about innovating to improve education also challenges our creative problem-solving skills and pushes us to new heights. This blog post is not a plug for just another one of my other joy projects (which I’m enjoying developing weekly); it’s something special that brought the three of us together in a new space - the creative space. 

Shannon’s been inspired through her love of creative education, harnessing the power of Adobe Spark within her communities, to grow her creative skills even further through illustration; she’s been joining many of my #eduTGIF episodes, a series which I host live on @Behance every Thursday evening (10pm PT) / Friday morning (8am GMT+2). My endeavor is to inspire educators to take risks to leverage illustration creatively across K-12 curriculum through the power of visual learning called ‘sketchnoting’. So, guess who joined today’s Kindness Matters episode? That’s right, Becky! She was really excited to join, now that she finally found a Thursday evening commitment-free to enjoy a bit of self-care. 

So how does attending a live-stream = self-care, you might ask? Well, what’s great about Behance is that you’ll have the chance to listen to some inspiring music while watching talented professional artists create their masterpieces; they create a space to unwind, relax, and find their zen. It means people can bring their favorite drink, throw their favorite hoodie/slippers on, maybe even light a candle (my favorite scent is Marshmallow Fireside, in case you’re wondering), all while bringing their current creativity project, and JAMMING to the vibes!

What do illustration, sketchnoting, and creativity have to do with education, coaching, mentoring, or leading? The series explores strategies which educators, coaches, and leaders can harness across the curriculum to support innovation in collaborative ways, visual learning, and metacognition. Through different weekly topics, I have been able to share many ideas of how educators can empower their learners to create these same creative spaces to spark their engagement, their creativity, as well as their intrinsic motivation to learn and grow. 

 

Although I never actually invited Shannon and Becky to join my joy project Livestream, they were both really excited to join tonight’s episode, and I’m so grateful they did! Not only did they both share their ideas in the chat and meet new EdTech creativity leaders, but they also created magical pieces of artwork alongside me. Even though they shared how much fun they had, their immediate reactions were to celebrate each other in our #3CCs space at the end of my Livestream. Becky shared how she “really liked how [I] drew a tree and it inspired [Shannon] to draw the earth in a heart.” A truly special capture of the importance of a focus on kindness, not only across education but reaching humans across the entire planet, gorgeous Shannon!

Becky’s was a beautiful creation based on my own Kindness Tree model, except she was truly inspired by the candy grams idea, and even “ran out of kind messages” - what a heartwarming sentiment to Kindness Matters; just look at all these acts of kindness that can/are exchanged in education communities globally!

And guess what? The innovation had only just begun. Shannon’s keen eye noticed that Adobe Fresco’s platform had recently gone through an upgrade and that it appeared we could actually collaborate on the same artboard together! As with any other EDU endeavor, we were ecstatic as ever to take learning risks, and experiment - even if it was live on air for all to watch. I’m truly humbled always by my teammates, Becky and Shannon, who never cease to impress me with their courageous nature and bravery for the betterment of education and self-improvement. 

Even though we weren’t actually able to collaborate synchronously in a Fresco file, we definitely invited each other after the live stream to try the new feature out. I honestly have no words for the excitement you can see shining from Shannon’s eyes as she read that I was adding to her masterpiece. As we explore, discover, and create together as adults, the excitement and passion that ensues are exactly why we do what we do. As educators, mentors, coaches, and leaders, we strive to inspire this intrinsic motivation to learn, grow, and live life to the max! 

A simple brush-stroke, a new layer, a new shadow effect, small tiny additions can add depth to make an idea literally pop off the page and sparkle on its journey through the clouds and across time zones. It’s the little things in life that matter— the time we take to share new ideas, explore new strategies, unpack new tools, and celebrate creative collaboration with your #PLN. It’s an honor to add these little touches to Shannon’s masterpiece, but it’s the ideas that ensued, that made me most proud; she’s already thinking about the different ways she can apply pass-the-sketchnote creativity across center rotations, and even here in #3CCs.

 

Can you spy-with-your-little-eye, what very special asset Shannon added to my #eduTGIF artboard? I cannot begin to tell you how truly touched I was to see her addition— the perfect addition to exemplifying kindness from the heart.

Kindness Matters is something the whole world is in need of. Imagine how much inspiration we shared and exchanged together in this short 1.5hr episode, not to mention the joy we each felt creating something special to celebrate acts of kindness. The ideas that we’ll each take away to share with our respective education communities are vast, and we celebrate those who may be inspired to likewise share and implement them with their own learners… imagine the creativity that will spark across classrooms globally just from 3 education leaders getting together to create some sketchnotes one evening/morning. 

It doesn’t take a massive presentation or a detailed webinar with loads of ideas and strategies to consume; sometimes all it takes is an inspiring creative space to connect, collaborate, ideate, share, and celebrate things that you’re passionate about. No matter what your role is in education, make sure you’re taking the time to jump outside your comfort zone and take risks to try new things, experience new activities, and find new ways to collaborate creatively. Take the time to seek inspiration from all avenues of life in order to learn to be a better coach, mentor, and leader. 

And as always, may your caffeine be strong and your inspiration high.