Dr. Paul Leslie

Dr. Paul Leslie

Saturday, 25 September 2021 05:42

Seeking Cwelelep

In some recent research, I wrote about the notion of Cwelelep which is an indigenous principle concerned with learning. Please see the following article:

Sanford, K., et al. (2012). "Indigenous Principles Decolonizing Teacher Education: What We Have Learned." In Education 18(2).

In the article, they comment that Cwelelep is (Sanford, et al, 2012, Lil’wat Principles):

"recognizing the need to sometimes be in a place of dissonance and uncertainty, so as to be open to new learning."

 I am very interested in seeking answers to how we can instill and inspire in our students the ability to recognize their need to seek cwelelep. In my current work as a faculty member using distance education tools to motivate and inspire my students, I am pursuing a community of inquiry approach to help inspire my students to feel free to challenge each other to be in a place of uncertainty. 

Hello - when I grade the first forum in this course, I often receive several emails. The following is a consolidated response to students:

First, I will just clarify that I use the grades to get students’ attention and to ‘encourage’ them to pay a just a bit more attention and to participate a bit more. Considering the several emails I have received this morning from you and others, it worked!

This can be considered an example of assessment for learning as opposed to assessment of learning. I consider this to be formative assessment and feedback as I am giving everyone several comments to explain my rationale behind the grade. The grade itself is merely a tool to get your attention.

afl cambridge

Cambridge Assessment for Learning

For more significant grading efforts, I am often very concerned to give advice and to offer to review work before it is submitted, and will return submitted work with an extended deadline if I feel that the student has misunderstood the expectations of the assignment.

In every case, I generally hope to see comments on several other students work – e.g., 4 or 5 or more. I find that when you comment on more of your peers’ work, they will then reciprocate and want to come and read your work.

I have also found that the best value for students is in responding to questions on their own post. This is why it is imperative to attract more people to your own post by commenting on their posts. If you get answers to your questions, that is great. However, I also encourage students to ask questions that will challenge the other students rather than questions that you actually want an answer to. You will learn more by focusing your attention on reviewing other people’s perspectives on your work (answering their questions) rather than your perspective on their work (reading their answers).

Tuesday, 06 July 2021 07:57

Taos Forum Call: Now I see a Person

Here are the details of another forum call I hosted on June 25th:


Dear Taos Associates,

You are invited to a Forum Call with Susan Swim and her colleagues from Now I See a Person.

Revisiting Process Ethics: Participating and Co-Creating Intimacy in Client-Therapist Relationships

June 25, at 12:00 - 1:30 PM US Eastern time


Paul Leslie will host this Forum Call with Dr. Susan Swim and her colleagues from Now I See a Person. You may also invite a guest to join you for this Forum Call, perhaps a colleague or student.

From Susan:

In 2001, I asked Ken, Harlene, Tom, Sally, Dan, Faith and Giselle to accompany me in writing on Process Ethics (Journal of Systemic Therapies 2001).

Now I See A Person Institute was created on these premises of “Ethically Generated Relationships”. Every conversation whether at the ranch or via zoom, due to the pandemic, celebrates honesty, genuine caring, seeing a person rather than a diagnosis, trust, humility, and humanness. Our “clients” see us as people as we do them. People come to be with us, a team of therapists, hopeless and suffering and we meet them in a space of genuine caring, pure listening, attempting to see, hear, understand, and be always client led.

In our previous forum calls we have sought to present and highlight these client voices in our evidence-based research. In this call we wish to share our voices, in the collective “we” which leads to what we now call "Extraordinarily Normal Lives".

Susan has also shared a number of references as pre-reading. Please take this opportunity to read through some of these in anticipation of the call.


  1. Journal of Systemic Therapies. Special Edition on Process Ethics Vol 20, No. 4 2001. (https://guilfordjournals.com/toc/jsyt/20/4 )
  2. Mad In America. Now I See A Person: A New Model for Breaking Free of Mental Health Labels.  https://www.madinamerica.com/2021/01/now-i-see-person-new-model-breaking-free-mental-health-labels/
  3. Swim, S. (2020). "Colleen’s Healing Journey." Metalogos Systemic Therapy Journal(38). (https://www.metalogos-systemic-therapy-journal.eu/en/current%20issue)
  4. Swim, S., et al. (2020). "Extraordinarily Normal: A Journey of Breaking Free from the Limits of Labels." Metalogos Systemic Therapy Journal(38). (https://www.metalogos-systemic-therapy-journal.eu/en/current%20issue )


After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting. Please keep that email as it contains your unique link to join the call. 



Paul Leslie, PhD


Apple Teacher
Associate of the Taos Institute (https://www.taosinstitute.net/paul-leslie)

Wednesday, 23 June 2021 21:47

PME 832 - Course Outline - Summer 2021

Please download the outline and syllabus linked below. You will also find this outline in the D2L course.

Also, please take the time to watch this video introduction to the course.

Tuesday, 22 June 2021 06:27

PME 832 -Summer 2021 - How to discuss!

Hello Students,

This course, and most Queens PME course, rely heavily on discussion forums, not only for grading but for the social construction of knowledge. So, let me share some ideas on how to make the most of your efforts in these discussion forums.

In a series of interviews on the experience of using discussion boards in these courses, some of your classmates and peers have made the following comments:

"The richest learning for me, has come out of those discussion boards and looking at other people's interpretations of things and talking to people about, or reading their experiences with varying things. And I've realized now that a lot of what I enjoy, a lot of my learning comes from is actually, from those discussion boards."

Many of the people I have interviewed found themselves actually quite surprised by the value and experiences they found in the discussion forums. For example, the following person described how the forum gave them the chance to really review the asynchronous discussion and think clearly about their own perspective on that particular issue before responding. The additional time offered by the asynchronous format allows for deeper reflection on the topic and stronger responses and understanding.

So, some of them I read two or three times, then I thought did I read this right? I didn’t respond right away, so I would read it first, step away and then come back. Sometimes I reread the notes before I responded because I thought, "I wanna get this right before my response to the person".

In other cases, people found that they were equally challenged by and benefited from providing answers to their classmates. They found that by thinking through the questions posed to them, they were able to clarify for themselves their own thoughts on the particular issue and then provide a meaningful response to their classmates.

"I think the big thing that helped me was reading other people's posts and trying to answer the questions that they had. So when I read someone else's, I actually connected and I had an answer for them. It made me feel very excited, because I was like, "Look, I'm helping this individual! I've experienced this and I've tried something and hey, here's what my experience has been."

  One way to ensure that people take time to read your post so that you receive feedback on it and can initiate a conversation, is to take the time to format your post.

I think being aware of what it looks like when someone opens it, it's like when I hand an assignment to students that's a full page of just writing, I know that they're gonna look at it and go, "Yeah, no". I feel similarly with the discussion posts. I know there's a couple of times where I would open one and it was just a wall of text and I was like, "I don't know if I'm gonna read this one", and it wasn't due from merit.

Consider the following outline for creating your post and engaging in the forum.

discussion forum post bHow to participate in a discussion forum.

To benefit from the discussion board environment and the chance for the social construction of knowledge, participants must both openly share their thoughts, and invite responses from others. Inviting responses includes paying attention to the responses.

As I have scanned the discussion forum posts over the past few years, I have noticed an important correlation between the number of comments a participant posts on others' posts, and the number of responses they receive to their own post. There are clear patterns that emerge just from the pattern of responses in the forum, without even opening up the posts. As a person comments on others' posts, those others then come to the initial respondent and comment on his or her post. In turn, this leads to greater feedback, interaction and transformation of that participant's knowledge resulting in excellent final projects.

I share a gentle reminder that you will will benefit much more from shorter, more frequent visits to the forums.

Finally, I also invite you to consider the community of inquiry as a model for online interactions.

coi new

Watch this video I have created and narrated on the Community of Inquiry

Our current cohort of students for Collaborative Inquiry - 801 - Spring 2021 - is a bit smaller at only 12 students. This makes the use of the discussion forums even more important for students to gain the full benefits of a distance format course.

During the Module 1 assignments, I noted that there was not as much interaction as I wanted to see and so 'encouraged' (deducted points from) many of the students to participate beyond the minimal requirements of the assignment. 

See the results in the Module 2 assignment - Technology Montage:

discussion forum replies sp21 801

This encouragement may not have contributed to the increase, but then again ... 

Thursday, 27 May 2021 15:19

Knowledge Forum Feedback

Hello - Hello - Here is a set of feedback from 2019 that I shared with students about their knowledge forum activities. These may be helpful to you.

You have put in a considerable effort to the Knowledge forum. I want to share with you the general feedback I gave to students so that you can see my focus on your work.

Knowledge Forum Rubric – PME 801





3                 2



Define Problem

Demonstrates the ability to construct a clear and insightful problem statement with evidence of all relevant contextual factors.

Demonstrates the ability to construct a problem statement with evidence of most relevant contextual factors, and problem statement is adequately detailed.

Begins to demonstrate the ability to construct a problem statement with evidence of most relevant contextual factors, but problem statement is superficial.

Demonstrates a limited ability in identifying a problem statement or related contextual factors.

Identify Strategies

Identifies multiple approaches for solving the problem that apply within a specific context.

Identifies multiple approaches for solving the problem, only some of which apply within a specific context.

Identifies only a single approach for solving the problem that does apply within a specific context.

Identifies one or more approaches for solving the problem that do not apply within a specific context.

Propose Solutions/Hypotheses

Proposes one or more solutions/hypotheses that indicates a deep comprehension of the problem. Solution/hypotheses are sensitive to contextual factors as well as all of the following: ethical, logical, and cultural dimensions of the problem.

Proposes one or more solutions/hypotheses that indicates comprehension of the problem. Solutions/hypotheses are sensitive to contextual factors as well as the one of the following: ethical, logical, or cultural dimensions of the problem.

Proposes one solution/hypothesis that is “off the shelf” rather than individually designed to address the specific contextual factors of the problem.

Proposes a solution/hypothesis that is difficult to evaluate because it is vague or only indirectly addresses the problem statement.

Embracing Contradictions

Integrates alternate, divergent, or contradictory perspectives or ideas fully.

Incorporates alternate, divergent, or contradictory perspectives or ideas in an exploratory way.

Includes (recognizes the value of) alternate, divergent, or contradictory perspectives or ideas in a small way.

Acknowledges (mentions in passing) alternate, divergent, or contradictory perspectives or ideas.


Gradebook Score:         /15

The rubric score is an approximate average out of 4. The gradebook score is the rubric score + 10, and a discretionary extra point. A score below 70, or 10/15, is a failing grade, is at the discretion of the instructor, and outside of the scope of the rubric.

Source: Association of American Colleges and Universities: https://www.aacu.org/value-rubrics



I can only find 3 entries from you in the Knowledge forum. This was a three-week long activity in which there was quite an abundance of conversation (42 pages and 22,000 + words). I worry that you are not benefiting from the conversation. I see that you are in a group and that you did contribute some comments. I hope you can contribute to your group. I am also note from your feedback that you have been experiencing a personal issue and so Ia m happy to show support for your studies by providing the above grade. If you feel I have misrepresented your input, please let me know. I am always happy to discuss and reconsider grades.

I am able to see a couple of focus areas. You discuss students and collaborative projects, but I also see a greater focus on collaboration between faculty. Would you say this is of greater interest to you? Is it something that you have greater control over? I see an overall focus on process which is evident in the group question you will pursue. This is all very useful. Good luck.

your initial question sparked a great range of discussion and I was interested to note it survived the forum intact and is now basically the group question. Well done. I can also see that you have provided a range of feedback and answers to people questions to you. Your name comes up in quite a few other entries where people are replying to you or referencing your comments. Nice work.

I really enjoyed reading your focus on the collaborative process for students and the questions how to ensure that students have choices to collaborate or not and then how to go about justifying their choices. These in themselves are examples of ill-structured problems: “Will I be more successful if I work alone or in a group?” Your question looks very interesting.

I see a very refined focus on collaborative techniques and the process of collaboration. I thought your question, “I also wonder how the roles and responsibilities within a collaborative learning environment change based on the age of the learners” was very interesting. I also see a tinge of how do we keep things relevant to our own lives and to our students’ lives? I wonder if there is room for inquiry just to see? I always remember taking apart the gear shifter on my new bicycle when I was about 10 years old. The whole thing exploded. My father was not impressed, but when I said I just wanted to see how it worked, he helped me put it back together.

I note that you did pose an interesting question with a bit of a follow up and that you created some great discussion. However, I did not see a lot of follow up from you to explore your question more fully or build on the comments of your classmates. The best aspect of this forum is that you have a chance to really explore your topic in an ill-structured manner before trying to impose more structure on your inquiry.

I see you have made a significant effort in the forum. Thanks! I think you are a k-6 teacher and so am intrigued by your choice of group question. I think that children and adults are ultimately driven by the same motivating factors. “Why are we doing this?”. Perhaps adults have a more complex reasoning, but not always! I look forward to reading your group project.

I thought your contributions to the knowledge forum were timely and interesting I would like to challenge you to think more broadly in your own experience. Your comments around the fundamental questions of ‘why’ are relevant but I wonder if you are still trying to structure things too much and not prepared to let students experience a truly ill-structured experience? You are also quite focused on institutional approval, which is important but you need to remember that, “It matters who the teacher is” (Kelchtermans, 2008).

 I understand that you are not a teacher and so your contributions are more so valuable. I thought your question, “What strategies can we teach students to focus more on collaborative learning rather than learning just for rewards (grades)?” was an excellent question for your group. I thought you were able to maintain a focus on the nature of problem solving and its usefulness to us as a general skill rather than just a way to get a good grade. I look forward to your group project. Well done!

I think your contributions to the forum were excellent. I can see that you tried to respond to questions and offered some excellent points to your classmates. I thought your question around data collection was a great focus and I am happy to see that your group will also focus on data collection. That is a good sign that you were able to defend your question. I hope you are able to get some great answers for yourself.

Thanks for your great contributions. I think you gave some very insightful comments around issues such as how do help students build a base knowledge around a topic (this sometimes gets lost in problem solving activities). I also loved your document on the 80/20 split – it was very interesting and a great model for others. This could be a great research topic.

I see that your two initial questions generated an amazing amount of dialogue. I hope you have read through all of that carefully. I would like to see that you have really investigated your classmates’ comments. I also see your final question around data collection in the classroom to inspire collaboration is very timely and relevant to this group. I do wonder how much thought you have shared with your classmates o this topic? Is this really a burning question for you? I can see the relevance of your initial question to your literature classroom. Is this final group question different than you had hoped? Is it still relevant to you?

 I see that you have participated in the forum quite prolifically and that you have been referenced and responded to by quite a number of your classmates. Well done! I like your focus on the issue of the value of any particular activity wand what do the stakeholders get out of it. This is an essential question and one that we must never lose sight of. I love the idea of learning for its own sake, but we need to question if formal education institutes are the place for that? At least sometimes it is, I hope, but generally people want to see results. How do we measure the joy of learning? Great effort!I read through all of your contributions I see some excellent questions and some discussion around the process of collaboration and how to ensure that students are getting the most out of it. I wonder if you have some answers for your classmates. Good luck with your group question!

I see that you have had a very rich discussion with a number of classmates I the knowledge forum,. You have posed at least three solid questions and maintained a focus on the ill-structured nature of questions. I always wonder how much damage our bias causes due to us misconstruing the nature of the problem or issue in front of us. How do we help our students to be aware of these two issues? I hope your final question looks at something like this. Great effort!

I think you did a great job to maintain your focus on the question of relevance: “What have you done for me lately?”. THi is an on-going question in every discipline and one that I spend a lot of time on with faculty development. I like the idea of knowledge for the sheer joy of learning, but that does not serve us well in formalized education. In the PME program here at Queens for example, the focus is n professional practice and that confines our inquiry. We are all very busy and so we want to get to the point. I wonder how much of this is because of the nature o the course and how much is more about serving some other need such as stakeholder data? Your final group question will be a great challenge. Well done!

I thought your entries to the forum were quite thoughtful. I did notice that you made fewer entries but that each one was rather significant. I wonder if this decreases your “interactivity” in the forum. I like to see people responding more regularly, even if with shorter posts. I am looking for you to really question each other and be questioned and show evidence that you are trying to consider others’ thoughts on your work. To do hat, you need to partake more regularly. Good luck with your question!

It seems that you have not contributed at all to the knowledge forum. Did you know how to access the forum? I will give you some credit as I can see that you have been logging in regularly. If you had any issues, please let me know and we can work something out.

I read through your contributions to the knowledge forum. You had a very clear focus and well-articulated arguments. I thought you responded well to your classmates and some of the points you raised were highly relevant. I think my only reservation indicated by the last criteria is your focus on cognitive bias. I see your own bias coming out in a few spots and wonder what you do to ameliorate your own biases, for example in relation to professional development? I agree with your points, but you need to have a clear argument for each session. They are not all the same.

Wow you outdid yourself in the forum. Your name pops up all over the document and I can see that you have made several dozen contributions. I loved your question as well: “How can we effectively cover the curriculum when engaged in inquiry led learning?”. As a curriculum ‘guy’, I think this is a key question. I see your final group question is a variation of this. Great work!

I read through your contributions in the forum and was duly impressed with your questions (“Do you think student-driven learning is automatically ill-structured?”) which generated lots of comments and your feedback around such issues as age appropriate tasks and the need for a process terms of agreement to accomplish tasks was all very insightful and drawn from experience. Well done!

Thursday, 27 May 2021 11:05

801 - Group Problem Brief

Hello – I do not usually provide feedback before an assignment (!), but in this case I thought I could share some of the feedback I have given other students in a previous cohort.

I have removed all names and any reference that might indicate identities. I have, however, retained the questions from each assignment.

The feedback is a bit disjointed as you do not have the original projects to which you can refer. Nevertheless, I think that the comments do provide some insight into how to structure your assignment and to what I find important in your scholarship.

First, here is the rubric. I do use this rubric and while the language is a bit obtuse, it helps to give a general overview of the work.


Capstone 4


3               2

Benchmark 1

Define Problem

Demonstrates the ability to construct a clear and insightful problem statement with evidence of all relevant contextual factors.

Demonstrates the ability to construct a problem statement with evidence of most relevant contextual factors, and problem statement is adequately detailed.

Begins to demonstrate the ability to construct a problem statement with evidence of most relevant contextual factors, but problem statement is superficial.

Demonstrates a limited ability in identifying a problem statement or related contextual factors.

Propose Solutions/


Proposes one or more solutions/hypotheses that indicates a deep comprehension of the problem. Solution/hypotheses are sensitive to contextual factors as well as all of the following: ethical, logical, and cultural dimensions of the problem.

Proposes one or more solutions/hypotheses that indicates comprehension of the problem. Solutions/hypotheses are sensitive to contextual factors as well as the one of the following: ethical, logical, or cultural dimensions of the problem.

Proposes one solution/hypothesis that is “off the shelf” rather than individually designed to address the specific contextual factors of the problem.

Proposes a solution/hypothesis that is difficult to evaluate because it is vague or only indirectly addresses the problem statement.

Design Process

All elements of the methodology or theoretical framework are skillfully developed. Appropriate methodology or theoretical frameworks may be synthesized from across disciplines or from relevant subdisciplines.

Critical elements of the methodology or theoretical framework are appropriately developed; however, more subtle elements are ignored or unaccounted for.

Critical elements of the methodology or theoretical framework are missing, incorrectly developed, or unfocused.

Inquiry design demonstrates a misunderstanding of the methodology or theoretical framework.


Organizes and synthesizes evidence to reveal insightful patterns, differences, or similarities related to focus.

Organizes evidence to reveal important patterns, differences, or similarities related to focus.

Organizes evidence, but the organization is not effective in revealing important patterns, differences, or similarities.

Lists evidence, but it is not organized and/or is unrelated to focus.


States a conclusion that is a logical extrapolation from the inquiry findings.

States a conclusion focused solely on the inquiry findings. The conclusion arises specifically from and responds specifically to the inquiry findings.

States a general conclusion that, because it is so general, also applies beyond the scope of the inquiry findings.

States an ambiguous, illogical, or unsupportable conclusion from inquiry findings.


Gradebook Score:       /35

The rubric score is approximately the total of each criteria out of 4. The gradebook score is the rubric score + 15, and a discretionary point or two either way. A score below 70%, or 24/35, is a failing grade, is at the discretion of the instructor, and outside of the scope of the rubric.

Source: Association of American Colleges and Universities: https://www.aacu.org/value-rubrics


Question: How do we motivate staff to participate in collaborative inquiry?

Hello everyone,

Thank you for your work. I can see the effort you have put into this. You will have already read my comments through the account above.

I do appreciate your effort to present this work in a format that you feel is conducive to your own needs. I think that comes through as well in the individual sections. I can see that certain themes emerge that are critical to all of you. Perhaps that is why they do tend to re-emerge in different sections of the brief.

You come back to the need to set SMART goals although you may use slightly different terms. This includes notions that the goals need to be relevant, achievable and aligned with the school or institutional needs. You also come back to the theme that the teacher needs to see their relevance and input in the goals, and that they are being heard. A third theme is that there needs to be time to participate.

I did find your format to present this work to be somewhat problematic. I had to ‘work’ a bit to make some of the connections. I think that this is a great draft format for creating the assignment, but I am not sure it a great presentation format. I think that since you may have split the assignment into parts and then each took a part, there was some repetition as noted. This contributes to the re-emergence of themes, which you may have picked up on if you had to rework this into a written format.

You note that you did not want to create a “take and use” CI case study, and you were not really asked to create one. But I was hoping to see a coherent discussion of the problem and then a brief about the relevance of the problem and what you might do about it. It could be highly contextualized to your setting rather than a generic focus on CI. In fact, that would be very interesting to your audience and would be very helpful to you by applying these principles to your own work and to a particular question about CI in primary schools, or with support teachers or other contexts.

I think you have captured some critical elements. You mention that there needs to be ample time, and that there needs to be reflection on the on-going work to ensure it remains relevant. It can be seen as relevant at the beginning, but then drift or produce results that are not sufficient to warrant continuing. Also, you mention that we need to ensure that the teachers agree with, or approve of the changes resulting from the CI. This may be true, but I am not sure. If results are demonstrably better for most, but not for one, then what might we do?

Your references were also unclear at times. I see that you provided citations and quotes, but you might do better to really try to apply these to your context. You would find this to be more efficient for you and more interesting. In the manner that you have used here, the effect of the citations was often lost as they were out of context. This too leads to some of the repetition that I see in the table.

Overall, I do think you have captured some critical elements related to your question. I think you have done some significant work and read quite widely in your references. I also think you would do very well to present your work in a format that lends itself to your audience. They are the ones you are trying to convince!


Question: How do we ensure we are not increasing bias in the data analysis process.


Thank you for your work on this critical element of CI. I have been working on a project to review cultural humility in education literature. This is an attempt to recognize our own implicit bias in our actions, especially in relation to culture, race, age, class, and other ‘isms’. So, this is a very timely topic.

I appreciate that you broke this approach into three elements and then highlighted that these are examples of the range of bias in our work. That is a critical point to make as well and I think you have covered it thoroughly. I think a key element of your paper would be to explain how you decided to focus on those three types of bias. I was very interested and feel that these are key types because of their ubiquitousness, but you should give us a reason to focus on these three. Then, the rest of your paper would have a clear(er) focus and a point to which you could refer throughout the paper.

I also enjoyed your examples outside of education. That helps us to see the wider elements of the problem. I was looking for a closer linkage to your work and how these issues play out in the school in either curriculum design, or assessment design and so forth. I would have liked to see some examples or comments from familiar territory such as between disciplines or across a school board, but nevertheless we can all extrapolate.

I found your writing to have a few grammar issues mainly with misplaced or omitted commas, which made reading the work a bit awkward. A careful proofread would help. Similarly, I noted here and there that some of your points seem to be repeated, although they were differences in the points you were making. This is where a good edit would help.

I thought you did well to reference the work, but I did note a few references that needed to be cited properly with a date or other information. Similarly, there were a couple points that need a reference to support the claim.

Overall, I think you have given a very solid effort and that if your peers were to read this work, they would benefit from your references and the points you have highlighted in your discussion.



Question: ‘Safe Space’ Environment, Culturally Relevant and Responsive Pedagogy and Culturally Sustaining Pedagogy

Hello everyone,

Thanks for your work. I can see that you have done a lot of work and literature review to put this paper together. I can also see that you have given a great effort to collaborate and bring together your combined experiences to focus on a very timely and pressing issue.

As noted, I was not clear just what your focus was. In a way, this is a such a broad topic since it covers many or most aspects of our teaching and is at the core of what it means to be a teacher, that there are many sub-topics and related issues that you might focus on. So, you really need to place your question out in front to focus your readers’ attention on the main points you are trying to make.

I think also that if you as the writers had that question right out in front, you would also be able to focus your writing just a bit more. I found as I read through your literature review that you seem to be introducing your topics without a reference point and then at the end you made a comment that would have clarified your points much better. I note that at a few points, I made a comment about, for example, teachers as lifelong learners that need to also learn from their students. You also make this point, but long after where it might have been more relevant. The inquiry of your paper has to be paramount and always in focus.

In a few places, you changed your focus with out a heading. The use of headings is not always necessary, but since you are using headings for some sections, then it is very helpful to use headings for every change.

I also noted that some of the terms you use need to be defined or clarified and deserve a bit more time. For example, the notion of a safe space is a critical piece. Even teachers need that safe space that they are to provide and so we need to be very explicit about what ‘safe’ means. In Canada over the last five years, this has been a topic of lengthy discussion in higher education. The notion of being safe is often misconstrued with being comfortable. How do we have ill-structured dialogues safely? I think you deal with this quite well, but I think the point needs to be made explicitly.

Otherwise, this is a powerful paper. I think in the end you bring everything down to the need for teachers to be aware of their communities and their students’ context within their communities at the local level and at varying levels to a national, or for some of you an international level. This is necessary to remain relevant and supportive and to be aware of our own responsibilities as educators.

I was impressed with your discussion of the CSP and CRP approaches. These approaches certainly would benefit and be supported by a participatory action research model that is on-going. Some of the principles including that the objects of the study are also subjects are key to the notion of being student-centered. This could also provide a core focus around which your conclusion could be built as means and model for teachers and schools to be able to respond to the needs of their students.



Question: How can schools foster a positive culture of collaborative inquiry?

Presentation notes:

Is there a question? The presentation does not state its purpose

Slide 6 – “How can administrators help?” Help to do what?

Slide 9 – great concept map – this makes everything very clear. This should be earlier in the presentation to allow the audience to know what you are talking about.


I enjoyed reading your paper. I think you have captured some central elements of the question of how to support teachers to participate in CI.

The question of time and benefits are key and I wonder if you could have expanded on these somewhat. I wonder if your discussion of the administration role is part of the solutions for teachers? There were some overlaps and since it is teachers that we want to support to collaborate, would the administration be a core part of the role of supporting teachers?

You do have a couple elements in the administration list such as the team objectives and the use of the team building model that are distinct, but these do seem to overlap with the solutions of the teacher buy-in section. If you had moved the administration discussion to after the teacher buy question you would have a greater base for your discussion of those points. It would then be great to see the list or a reframed list of pointers that would serve as your solution.

You might find then that you are able to remove some of the redundant sections. I have noted here and there where the writing seems to be repetitive.

Otherwise, you have captured core elements that I think are needed to support CI for teachers.

Your presentation was also very effective excerpt for my point about what question are you answering. I know it would be obvious if you were presenting it and the presentation is a part of the larger assignment, but if you were to share the presentation with someone who wasn’t at your presentation, they might be a bit lost and the effectiveness of the presentation would be diminished.

I also generally like to see more references and more attention paid to the citations. Part of CI is that we can collaborate and build upon the work of others that we do not know. That is the point of scholarship. So, I think you could include a few more references and read a bit more widely.

Overall, I think this assignment has great points and is well argued. I think you could do well to reorganize the sections and pay close attention to the points you are trying to make. By removing any repetition, you can really make more impactful statements.



Wednesday, 26 May 2021 21:35

Knowledge Building Coggle Map

Hello everyone - I have had a few more questions about the Coggle map activity. So, here are a few extra thoughts on what to do. I have had a look at what is happening at the moment and I see a lot of great activity. So, for those of you who are engaging, you are doing well.

The point of the Coggle map is to give you a chance to experience the use of an online tool to build your own knowledge around your burning questions. In light of the readings around ill-structured problems and collaborative inquiry, you should be able to refine your questions in anticipation of the group project on responding to one of the questions.

So, you have been asked to bring your burning questions over from your draft concept map and add one or two or all of them to the map. In this way, you will be able to see each other questions. Quite often, there are numerous overlapping or similar questions. Also, there will be those of you who have great answers for the questions or will have an add-on or a refinement to a question.

In each case, you are then asked to share your thoughts, challenge each other and try to answer and, or extend each others' questions. You are encouraged to comment on as many as possible, just as in the discussion forums. I hope to see you extend the questions, refine them and share your thoughts on the value of the questions in different circumstances. 

As with the discussion forums, the best approach is to visit and revisit several times over a short period of time rather than for one long interaction.

At the end of the activity, you should have your groups formed and you should be able to select a very well written question for your group assignment. There is a rubric in the course outline with the following four criteria:

  • Define Problem – Share well-planned questions / comment on other questions
  • Identify Strategies - Refine and discuss
  • Propose Solutions – Answer, share possibilities and further refine / edit
  • Embracing Contradictions – interact and build on each other’s’ comments.

In summary:

  • Bring your burning questions from your draft concept map.
  • Respond to each other’s questions with your own comments and refinements.
  • Finalize your groups
  • Select a great question from your interactions for your group assignment.

Please note that this is an experience and so your engagement is the prime focus on the activity. I am happy to give everyone a few more days as well to read through the map and contribute.

Monday, 19 April 2021 08:32

Hosting TAOS Forum calls

As I was reviewing my emails and Taos Institute documentation, I noted that I have completed a number of calls, welcomes of new members and other activities. In addition to the one I posted previously, here are a few more highlights:

Hosting Forum Calls:

You are invited to a forum call with Peter Whitehouse on: Intergenerational Futuring

Wednesday, September 16th, 12:00 – 1:00 PM (ET / New York Time).

With Peter Whitehouse

Host – Paul Leslie

Intergenerational Futuring is about creative dialogue about the past and present in service of a better more sustainable future.  Intergeneratively synthesizing concepts like transdisciplinarity, relational learning, social construction, narrative, Big History, Deep Time, integrative health, interprofessional practice, deep bioethics, cognitive neuroscience and the transmedia arts is essential to creating and enacting social transformation. It challenges dominant neoliberal economics and politics and unbridled faith in rationality and science, like scientism  An example is the InterHub as part of the Presencing Institute, especially their GAIA (Global Activation of Intention and Action)  project  where our intention is “Learning to take intergenerational action together to re-enchant civilization.”

Key question for introductions: What idea or activity inspires you as essential to creating a better, more sustainable future?

 You are invited to a Forum Call for Taos Associates with Haesun Moon.

Host: Paul Leslie

November 19th, at 10:00 – 11:00 AM EST (New York).

Show me: The Evidence of Social Construction

 In studying communications, we often focus on the contents of what people say rather than what the content does. If you work with people as a counselor, therapist, trainer, coach, or other capacity, the question goes beyond what do we say and what do they say. It becomes more about what does the conversation do?

In this brief forum call, you will get to experiment with a simple heuristic of interaction - Dialogic Orientation Quadrant - to see how social construction may be made visible in your work.

Key questions for discussion:

  • Think back on a conversation that had a positive effect on you - whether it motivated, inspired, comforted, encouraged, or even challenged you to think differently. What was it about the interaction that contributed to the positive effects?
  • How do you teach others to “do it"?

 You are invited to a Forum Call with Dr. Saliha Bava.

Hyperlinked Identities: A Generative Resource in a Divisive World

April 22, at 10:00 - 11:00 AM US Eastern time

Paul Leslie will host this Forum Call with Dr. Saliha Bava. You may also invite a guest to join you for this Forum Call, perhaps a colleague or student.

Saliha asks:

How do we perform our identities when we are navigating systems that are not in alignment for us? What relational practices do we call forth to help us coordinate the contradictions of everyday life so as to not live a life of complicitness? Or is that even doable?

Saliha will invite us into this conversation by sharing the making of the concept of hyperlinked identity as her way to traverse this tension, or what Homi Bhabha (1994) refers to as ambivalence, i.e. the fluctuating relationship between complicity and resistance as a colonized subject.

Saliha also shares her work on the hyperlinked identity in the attached draft chapter. Please feel free to read this in anticipation of the call.

Does this resonate with you? Please join the conversation.

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