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Thursday, September 28, 2017

Changing Structures, Retaining Purpose

In 1929 when I decided to form an organization to help remove barriers limiting the advancement of women educators, I was reacting to my aversion to discrimination. You likely know of two stories that festered and spurred me to act. One is that my brother told me I could not be a lawyer because I was a woman and not “supposed” to be a lawyer. The other occurred when I worked at the Texas Department of Education: a man told me that the reason women did not accomplish more is that they would not work together.
    Those remarks gnawed at my good sense, and I decided that if women could bond in a unified organization, they could fortify one another in accomplishing worthy endeavors. Therefore, for several months, I pondered what the framework of such a society should be. I considered a desirable pattern of finance, drafted a tentative constitution that outlined purposes and policies, and wrote an initiation ceremony and the lyrics for an official song. In that time I also convinced eleven other women that this medium of improvement for women would have value. We laid plans for consummation of this organization on May 11, 1929.
    I marvel that this dream of mine has survived almost 89 years! Being a woman who appreciates solid planning and considered thinking, I am proud of this Society. My continuing dream is that the thousands of members in modern times realize the power that comes from the bonds realized in a unified organization. Details change to adapt to the environments, but the substance remains. Governing documents change, but the bonds of an organization of unified women who can change the world do not. 

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

BAM! Radio? Try Something New!

BAM! Radio may have gone unnoticed by many. BAM! is an acronym for “Body And Mind” and was conceived in 2007 on the premise that the key to success in life for children and youth is nurturing a healthy body and healthy mind. Today BAM Radio is the largest education radio network in the world, offering programming from the nation's top education organizations and thought leaders and reaching a wide audience of people passionately committed to quality education.

Why bring this resource to your attention? Bam! Radio has great information, great sources, short sessions (10 minutes or less)—but best of all, you can listen while you are in your car or relaxing at home.
Resources for teachers, leaders, and ed technologists include many recognizable names and some new ones. You can choose just to listen to one presentation or subscribe to all presentations for a given source.

A few sources Include:

Is it time that you listened to topics that explain, excite, or give you inspiration? If so, explore one or more of the Bam! Radio channels.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

DKG Impacts the World

When traveling to the Northeast Regional Conference, the guard at the Canadian border asked the reason for our visit. I said a conference for key women educators.  He replied, “Wow and welcome to Canada”.  Later that week, several of us were having lunch and the waitress asked how our vacation was going and we replied that we were not on vacation but here for a convention.  We are key women educators impacting education worldwide.  She stood up straight and said “Wow, you must be very special ladies”.  It was at that moment that I simply decided I would no longer say I am a member of Delta Kappa Gamma Society International.  When asked about my work in DKG, I am a member of an organization that impacts education all over the world.  I realize the effect of our work is not just in my chapter or state, it really is worldwide. Opportunities for professional development, scholarships and stipends, collegiality and networking; projects that support the work of teachers and students, and positive influence on situations far from our homes such as Schools for Africa, Malawi wells are plentiful. 
I am thrilled the organization is stressing “Simplify, Simplify”.  This forces us to take a long hard look at our practices and realize there must be changes in how we do business.  We have the opportunity to serve a new generation of women who could benefit from all that we have to offer.  Why wouldn’t every female educator want to be a member of an organization that impacts education worldwide?  I can think of none.  I look forward to learning more about the proposed changes that will focus on Society operations and update our practices to meet the needs of 21st century educators. 

See you in Austin next summer!

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

DKG Women: Thinking Together

I am pleased to see that DKG women are turning over ideas and thinking about different ways of sustaining the Society. That’s what we Founders did too when we were organizing the Society. We struggled with how best to describe and organize for the changes we wanted to make for women and particularly for women educators.

Occasionally, you will hear ideas with which you don’t initially agree. Some may be taken aback by others who want to try different paths of membership or who question DKG customs. We Founders respected each other even when we did not agree on the elements of the plan as we were building the Society; we respected each other because we believed that the goal to establish the Society was too important to let differences in thoughts about ways and means disrupt our success.  We had to learn and re-learn that the ideas expressed are not the person.

I, Annie Webb Blanton, want to emphasize that tolerance for the person who’s expressing ideas grants the important option of keeping the conversation open. Saying what one thinks or just thinking aloud often indicates a search for understanding, an attempt for clarity, or a frustration with what one experiences.  I urge you to be open-minded and to actually hear what the other person says and try to understand her intent. What another says deserves the respect of being heard and considered. Emotional reactions without a mutual search for understanding are detrimental to human hearts. Free exchange, open dialogue, and civil conversation are elements of a sustainable Society. The bond of mutual regard is the only path to candor and a satisfactory path to DKG’s future.

Monday, September 11, 2017

Have you heard about…TES Teach?

After the “first weeks of school,” DKG teachers will seek inspiration and fresh educational material to enhance their classes. The following suggestion can even be used by chapters, perhaps during leadership training.

TES Teach is a subset of a website called TES, which provides educational materials, jobs, news, and courses from and for the world’s best community of teachers and school leaders. TES Teach will help you create digital lessons in 5 minutes. These can be interactive lessons, projects, presentations, and more. It is free! An overview of TES Teach can be viewed in a YouTube “TES Teach 2017 Tutorial – Create Digital Lessons” by “Technology for Teachers and Students” (also a great source!).  The YouTube is worth 20 minutes of your time.

TES Teach allows you and/or your students to collect all digital material in one place. This includes personal documents, videos, and photos, material from YouTube, and any other lessons and materials found with an Internet search. This feature alone makes it unique.

Presentations can be as short or long as needed. Notice in the following example about bullying that text, a quiz, three PowerPoint Presentations, a video, a PDF, and a photo are all utilized. The presentations or lessons can be shared electronically or even printed.

You are encouraged to watch the YouTube video, which will answer most questions about TES Teach. This simple-to-use approach could be a powerful tool for any teacher.
Is this something you can use in your classroom or chapter?

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Isn’t it time that you “Get Connected!”?

There is a wealth of information available throughout the Delta Kappa website. Committees, events, forms, and resources are at your fingertips. In addition, we hope that you are familiar with the bi-monthly newsletter published by the Communications and Publicity Committee, Get Connected!

Each one-page newsletter usually covers several topics. Topics include Public Relations, My DKG, Internal Marketing, Benefits of Membership, Informational Videos, Privacy Issues, DKG Communities, Social Media, Blogs, Educational Opportunities for Members, the DKG App, and even QR Codes.

Every effort is made to distribute “Get Connected!” to state editors and webmasters. We hope that “Get Connected!” is posted on state websites, mentioned in state newsletters, and shared with chapters.

Have you seen copies? If not, THIS LINK will take you to the entire list. However, to get you started quickly, here is an overview of the last two editions.

Read and share this valuable source of information. And let us know what topics you would like to see explored in upcoming issues!

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