Hats off to this series of blog posts by Intrepid Learning.


Series: Declaration of Modern Learner Rights blog posts VIA – Intrepid Learning

I just ran across this great series of blog entries from my friends at Intrepid Learning by Sam Herring on LinkedIn. Besides being a local company here in Seattle I’ve always respected the great work they do. I was first introduced to their work while I was at T-Mobile. I also respect their accessibility locally and involvement in ATD. Sam Herring who is CEO at Intrepid served on the ATD board of directors for 4 years and made big contributions to the learning community. Here is an interview I did with Sam for the ATD Puget Sound 2012 Workplace Learning Conference.


There are some really great blog articles in this series. I recommend you check them out and sign up to follow their blog. Don’t forget to download the cool infographic from the blog article I ♥ infographics . Enjoy!




College Lectures: Not the Best for Learning, Says New Study

sleeping-studentPlease tell me that we are not surprised at the results of this study. I believe most educators and learning and development professionals know that a good hands on experience or interactive module will achieve a better transfer than a lecture any day. Don’t get me wrong lectures have a place in learning but its just not where the real learning takes place. In my option lecture is the place for bringing all the experience and activities together, sort of connecting the dots. To me a lecture is sometimes like drinking out of a fire hose.

I always enjoyed the lab days in school. I still remember some of the experiments we did in science class. Who doesn’t remember lighting things on fire or dissecting frogs. Just saying! The value is in the experience and actually trying things for your self. This is where you start to see the value of concepts like the flipped classroom. There is nothing new about activity based learning isn’t that what an apprenticeship is? Learning while doing is where it is at. Below is the article that inspired this blog.

College Lectures: Not the Best for Learning, Says New Study | IdeaFeed | Big Think.

7 things small business should read before making a video

Found this article this morning and I will have to agree, so I thought I would share. Video is so powerful and much more feasible today than even ten years ago. Costs have come way down and it is much easier to distribute or share with your audience. I believe in the power of video. Especially for learning. It can act as stand-a-lone or part of an eLearning, it can be shared in classroom training to break up the the day and improve engagement. Video can also be extremely powerful when combined with mobile.  We have seen the rise of video though social media and its power with portals like Youtube. Video can be interactive as well. For example watch a video and make a choice based on what the video showed you.  I have helped many organizations take the first steps into adding video into their learning and development. It can be easier than you think, especially with a little  help and some mojo 🙂

7 things small business should read before making a video- San Diego Video Production Company.

Bruce Lee Teaches You How To Be A Better You

brucelee-infgraphicWhen people talk about Bruce Lee they mostly talk about his amazing skills as a martial artist, how great his movies are or maybe they quote one of his witty philosophical phrases. They may also talk about what a great teacher he was or his influence in their life.

May I suggest we look at one other attribute that Bruce has that we can all learn from. Bruce was an amazing student and I believe that this was a key to his amazing achievements. Every journey has its beginning and its path. Somehow you need to get from point A to point B. I do not believe that Bruce’s achievements were an accident or a lucky break or even his destiny. You may argue that there was something special about Bruce Lee and that very well may be true. But he was not always a great martial artist or philosopher and a movie star. But he was someone with a lot of dreams and aspirations someone who knew where he wanted to go and what he wanted to do.

I have been a martial artist for over 20 years and have followed Bruce Lee and his philosophy for much of that. I’ve had the privilege of meeting several of Bruce Lee’s friends and students. And I’ve had the privilege of studying under some of his students. Everyone I’ve ever talked to that knew him personally had a tremendous amount of respect for him. He was the real deal.

One of the things that has always stood out to me was that he was always learning, studying trying to improve and wanting to be the best. You could never say he was complacent, content or satisfied. Bruce worked hard to become who he was and always working to be better.

I love the quote used in this image absorb what is useful, reject was is useless and add what is essentially your own. This really sums it up. There is no doubt the Bruce Lee had some great teachers and surrounded himself with great people. Bruce had a foundational knowledge of martial arts but there was one thing that stood out. He was always looking for ways to improve himself as a martial artist,  Bruce was constantly reading and always questioning what he knew. He did not limit himself by staying within one style, martial arts system or one way of thinking. He was a consummate student when he found something didn’t work he quickly moved past it and looked for something that did making it his own. He also believed that his truth may not necessarily be someone else’s truth meaning everyone’s different we will need to find our own path with our own experiences and knowledge. If you look at Bruce Lee’s students today you won’t find another Bruce Lee he did not teach them to be him, he taught them to be the best self they could be. Not a bunch of Bruce Lee clones but independent thinkers and independent students on their own path.

So in short if you want to find the next level, that better you. The 1st thing you need to focus on is becoming a great student.

Here’s another great quote by Bruce Lee I think is pertinent.
“Empty your mind, be formless. Shapeless, like water. If you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup. You put water into a bottle and it becomes the bottle. You put it in a teapot, it becomes the teapot. Now, water can flow or it can crash. Be water, my friend.”

Here is a related blog about that quote. Empty your mind…

Knowledge is not a passive thing

4k4mUSo true. This quote, to me is pointing out the fact the knowledge is not a passive thing. It is born out of action as all growth and achievements are. To learn we must observe, practice and get feedback.  In Martial Arts and in other sports we often refer to a thing called muscle memory. This is when we have practiced a movement enough that the muscle knows what to do instinctively without the brain having to walk us through. Without mind! Bruce Lee once said “I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times.” We should always be students approaching life with an open mind and willing to put effort into something we have been exposed to so we make it our own.


Is Khan Academy the next model for learning?

I have been following the Khan Academy since first saw the 2011 TED talk by Salman Khan. I think about the possibilities that it offers to education. How can we leverage this model to enhance the the way our education system works today. I love the theory of flipping the classroom. The student having access to video content to work through and explore at their own pace. Then the teacher can work closely with the student while they practice and apply what they learned.

At the end of his talk Bill Gates joins Salman and asks some really great questions about the Gamification and the role of mentors and tutors on the site. Bills closing statement really put a bow on the talk when he says “I think you got a gimps of the future of education”.

Salman Khan talk at TED 2011


More on BYOD for K-12

I just found this video on BYOD for K-12 by Cisco. This supports my sons post earlier today. No I did not nudge him to write that blog. It surprised me when his post popped up on my Google+ timeline

When he got home I asked him about it. He said he had been thinking about it for awhile and just wrote the blog. BTW he also told me he wrote and published it from his smartphone in his Advisory class. Nice!

Katy ISD Transforms Education with Mobile Learning

Related Post

Why schools should have tablets

mLearning: Making Learning Mobile

I am looking forward to speaking at this Online Forum on December 6th & 7th hosted by the eLearning Guild. It is a topic that I really enjoy talking about and that is technology based learning. In this case its mobile technology. Mobile technology offers new ways to reach our learners. I have been involved in many conversations with thought leaders on subject of how mobile is transforming how we reach the learner. Mobile opens up possibilities that we have never had before. It is up to us to decide how we are going to embrace these opportunities and leverage them to create better learning.

Come join in the discussions!

eLearning Guilds Online Forums


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Three Great Examples of Video Libraries for Learning

I believe that a good video learning library is a great way to expand the reach of your training. Think of videos as little learning objects. The videos could be part of a large training effort and used in various parts of your training. For example you could embed the video on company websites such as SharePoint portals or maybe in your internal social network. You could also embed the videos into an eLearning or used as part of a virtual training session. Not to forget it is a great way to support or enhance your stand up training.

Me capturing a coaching moment

I am not saying you need to build some sort of expensive video streaming server for a crazy price. In the future it will be easier to do this sort of thing when you have a Cloud Network. For now there are really simple solutions for very little cost using external services. I will give you an example. When I was at T-Mobile we used Viddler as a host for our videos. We actually shared an account with marketing to keep the cost down. The videos permission was set to privet so they could not be found out in the wild as they say.  Once a video was posted you could grab the embed code and post the video wherever you needed. I could post on any sites or I could even add the code to my Lectora course. This method really worked great: post once deploy anywhere. This could also be done  with YouTube or many other media services.

One other possibility is to create your own video library. This could be accomplished a number of ways with a variety of tools. You can still keep your videos hosted on that external streaming media service. The library is just using the embed code as before. This could be done with a SharePoint site or maybe your Wiki. You could also use a standard web server. If you’re worried about writing code for this you could use a tool like Adobe Contribute do handle the heavy lifting. There really are a ton of options for this part. A lot of them are inexpensive or free if you leverage what you already have.

Three great examples of video libraries

YouTube is a rather obvious example of the fact that we can learn from a video. It also showed the world that people love video. It proves that we like user generated content. One major drawback is that it is not great design. It is mixed content. Youtube is optimized for channels. If you want to learn something you may have to search through a few not so good videos. But there are some gems out there. Here is a fun video I enjoy playing as an example of learning from video. It also shows that your video does not have to be high production for you to learn from it. Easily Hack a Combination Lock

One great example of video for learning is Lynda.com. This is a good example of an organized and focused library of learning content. I am a big fan of Lynda.com. I have learned many tips and tricks from Lynda training videos. Not only can you access Lynda when you want to learn some new software but it is also a place you can go to learn how to do a specific thing.

I also have been following the Khan Academy their tag line is “Learn almost anything for free”. They are just being honest, they have over 3,400 videos. The Khan Academy is a not-for-profit with the goal of changing education. That is a pretty ambitious goal don’t you think? After watching Salman Khans TED video I am a believer. Maybe there are some lessons here for corporate learning.

In know , I know why didn’t I just make a video for this post?

Are you ready for the next iteration of SCORM? You better be!

With tool makers like Lectora and Articulate on-board with #tincanapi it is time to start paying attention. Everyday I hear of another company that is jumping in. Is your organization ready? It’s a game changer. Companies need to start looking at building a learning technology road-map so they don’t get left in the dust. We now have new ways of understanding how and what people are learning. You can look at real data for learning outside an LMS. But don’t take my word for it – join the conversation.

A good place to start is my conversations with Aaron Silvers of ADL and Tim Martin of Rustici at LSCon 2012. Then follow my interviews with Ali and Russell of SaltBox. Saltbox jumped on board early with Project Tin Can. Russell has been an active contributor in refining Tin Can. Saltbox has created some technology to record statements from the Tin Can API called an LRS or Learning Record Store. Saltbox has developed Wax LRS, a Learning Record Store with analytics using the Tin Can API.. Project Tin Can really made a big show at mLearnCon 2012 by creating a special area dedicated to Project Tin Can called Tin Can Alley. Several companies showed support and jumped on board. Companies like Float Mobile Leaning with their release of Tappestry, a social learning app that is first to hit the market place leveraging Tin Can. Tin Can created quite a buzz. One of the things I like about the eLearning Guild is they really showcase current trends and technologies. They have their eye on the ball as they say.

Last week I conducted a few follow up interviews with my friends at Saltbox. Saltbox is located downtown Seattle and is part of SURF Incubator and collaborative work space for startu-ups. Check out my conversations with @alishahrazad & @fugu13 of @saltboxservices about what is going on with the next iteration of SCORM.

My interview with Russell Duhon CTO Saltbox Services

My Interview with Ali Shahrazad Co-Founder Saltbox Services