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The Grand River Runs Through It

July 16, 2018

Back in May, I volunteered to be a Controller for the National Fly Fishing Championships held on the Grand River here in Fergus and Elora. I was interviewed by a local videographer and this is their video.

The Grand Runs Through It

Also in the video are interviews with other leaders from various Grand River organizations such as Friends of the Grand River and Trout Unlimited.

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Hooking into some great fly fishing podcasts

June 13, 2018

Are you on the lookout for some great fly fishing related podcasts to load up before heading out on a drive to your favourite river? Perhaps you just need some new podcasts to divert yourself from provincial, national or international politics and their overwhelming daily grind of bad news stories. Look and listen no further.

Here are a few regular fly fishing podcasts to add to your chosen podcast app.

The Orvis Fly Fishing Podcast– Hosted by long time Orvis fly fishing educator and ambassador, Tom Rosenbauer, the weekly podcast features a Q&A with Tom answering listeners’ questions on basic through technical fly fishing topics followed by a full length interview with an expert guest, often featuring guides who know special rivers or techniques. Tom and the guest cover everything from trout to bass to pike, and salt water fly fishing too. You can listen in to current episodes from the link above or better yet, subscribe to the podcast for new episode notifications. You can subscribe in iTunes here.

Not a week goes by when Tom doesn’t answer a question that brings new knowledge to even the most experienced fly fisher! A fascinating recent episode featured an interview with Kirk Johnson, the author of The Feather Thief, an investigation into the dark underworld of the illegal feather trade and the fringe fly tyers who trade in contraband materials.

The So Fly Podcast– this group of young fly fishers who are also photographers and media artists are spreading the fly fishing gospel with interviews with Canadian fly fishing personalities and features on local and regional fly fishing waters. Edgy but always informative, the shows feature friendly, informal conversations with guides, retailers, and fishing legends, along with news and trip reports. Subscribe in iTunes here.

Food for fly fisher thought: Is the Instagram Lifestyle Killing Fly Fishing? | The Modern Trout Bum

June 13, 2018

Too many anglers are blinded by the opportunity to increase their Instagram lifestyle cred that fishing ethics and common sense go right out the window.
— Read on themoderntroutbum.com/is-the-instagram-lifestyle-killing-fly-fishing/

Big news! The Rodcast has emerged as a new Fly Fishing forum.

June 13, 2018

13A9C031-22AE-4A92-9839-29776023C3C5After years of Blogging as part of my personal learning network (PLN) mainly focused on Educational Technology, I’m taking the Rodcast in a new direction. Ironically, my blog title needs no revision to make it better match its new focus, fly-fishing.

Having recently retired to Fergus, Ontario on the famous Grand River Brown Trout tail water fishery, I’m intending to journal my way through my new learning as a fly fisher, a pastime I took up as a 10 year old but am now able to pursue in a much more serious way, some 50 years later.  Posts will vary in scope. Some will be personal, others reposted from elsewhere. A main theme will be local info on the Grand River, along with other fishing adventures near and far!

So here goes! Follow along. Subscribe. Comment. Go Fish.

The Most Powerful Tool for Writing Papers: Diigo 7.0 Released! — Diigo

October 23, 2016

Diigo 7.0 is perhaps the most significant version upgrade in Diigo’s history. We are confident that you will find the new Diigo to be the most powerful personal knowledge management tool that can help you harness information, build coherent knowledge, and speed up learning. From pieces of information to a coherent knowledge structure With this upgrade, […]

via The Most Powerful Tool for Writing Papers: Diigo 7.0 Released! — Diigo

The Blog Tool in D2L Brightspace – under utilized?

October 16, 2016

Perhaps you’ve seen the Blog tool under the Communications drop down menu in D2L or maybe you are already familiar with it and just want extend your course’s impact on candidates? Wherever you fall on the Blogging continuum, this Blog post will introduce ETFO AQ instructors and course candidates to setting up, writing, sharing and subscribing to Blogs using D2L’s built-in blogging tool.

Why Blog as part of an AQ course?

At Innovate 2014, George Couros, our Keynote speaker, showed us his Blog and demonstrated how it was his “digital hub.” In a recent Blog post, George described to a Principal how important Blogging was to daily reflection on work and learning. “Blogging is your Job!” he explained to the Prinicpal, echoing the words of John Dewey, who stated that “We do not learn from experience. We learn from reflecting on experience.” As lead learners, it’s important to model reflection to others, whether that be our staff, our school colleagues, our students, candidates, even ourselves. Blogging is one form of regular reflection.

Some ETFO AQ Courses currently make use of the Blog tool. In the IICT Part 2 Course, candidates must set up a Blog and commence blogging by writing a reflection on another of George Couros’ blog posts, one in which he states “Reflection is part of your work.” IICT2 candidates then Blog throughout the course in a series of reflection pieces. How could this be a part of your course? First, you need to set up your own Blog in D2L.

How to get set up with the D2L Brightspace Blog Tool

How can we get set up with a Blog and get started? Below you’ll find the ncessary steps to get yourself, and your course candidates set up using the built in D2L Blog tool, and some suggestions for how to get your course candidates reflecting.

This Video from D2L Brightspace provides a good introduction to the Blog Tool. It shows how to set up, post, set the visibility of posts, add comments, and publish blog posts, as well as set up a Blog Watch of people whose Blogs you wish to read e.g. the candidates in your course.

As Instructors, in order to post to your own Blog, you will need to click “View as Candidate” under your name at the top right of any screen. When you start using your Blog, it’s a good idea to open the Blog Settings gear and click on the checkboxes that make your Blog visible to others. You can turn off commenting, but the point of a Blog is to be open and transparent about your own learning so checking “Allow comments by default” is a good choice in order to initiate feedback. “Make entries public by default” allows all readers within D2L to see your post, and checking “Allow blog to be read by anyone” makes your Blog visible beyond D2L to a wider audience, if you choose to share the URL Permalink or the feed of your Blog.

See the Blog Settings graphic below. After clicking the Blog link in the Communications Dropdown menu, click the Settings Gear near the top right of the screen.

blog-settings

Once you are set up, all you need to do is click on New Entry and start writing! Start with a descriptive title and go from there. The challenge comes with knowing what to write about, but gets easier if you think about your Blog as a reflection space where you record your thoughts about what you are learning from teaching your course, taking a course, or any other ideas that pop in your head worth recording! What if your Course Blog became the place where you summarized the week’s learning in your course’s Discussion Forums? Or maybe the summary for each LE? Think about a Blog as metadata about your own personal learning, what you are thinking about as you learn, what your candidates are sharing in the forums. The possibilities are endless.

One of the ways Blogs are ranked on Google is by how often they link to other Blogs, so link your writing to documents or texts that relate to your learning. Share websites that may be useful or relevant. Use the editing tools to add these links, or insert imagery, embed videos, and add text formatting that will make your Blog more interesting, more readable. When you’re done, click Save! You are done. For now. You can edit it again later if you wish or add more content, or correct anything, even after it’s published. If comments appear, you will get a notification and respond if necessary.

Let me know, in the comments below, via email or Twitter if you have any questions about setting up your D2L Blogs, Blogging as part of a course, other Blog platforms to consider or how to make use of Blogging as part of your own Professional Development.

Postcards from Somewhere in France -8- Discovering Will

January 1, 2016

If you follow this Blog you may recall the wonderful postcards from France that were found last fall when cleaning out my parents things before their move. I posted some of them during Remembrance Week in November. Buried in a Burkes Jewellers box, this stack of postcards had been sent to my Grandmother, Gladys (Harmer) Murray from her fiancee, Will, from the front during WWI (see Postcards from Somewhere in France).

57A- Will

Will Haskins in Uniform

We talked a lot about Will and what he may have been like, and about how his death, near the end of the Great War, changed the course of events for my Grandmother and for us. Who was Will? That was the question I asked my father, and he answered. His name was Billy Haskins!

Once we had a name, we were able to learn so much more about him. There are lots of resources to research WWI soldiers and their resting places.

A visit to the Commonwealth War Graves Commission website and some smart searching and we began to find out a lot more about Will Haskins.

W H A Haskins, as he is listed, was the son of Mr. W. Haskins, of 427, Courtland Avenue, Kitchener, Ontario. Grandma was from Stratford, not so far away. We still wonder how they met.

Will was a Corporal at the time of his death, although the photos we have, show him in Private and later Corporal, uniforms. He was in the Scottish Regiment of Canadian Infantry, 16th Battalion. He died on the 28th of July, 1918, just four months before the end of the war. He is buried in Wanquentin Communal Cemetery Extension.

His casualty details can be seen here, which can also be downloaded as a certificate: HASKINS_W_H_A.

There are some other documents pertaining to his service and death.

This document, in The Supplement to the London Gazette, August 8, 1918, indicates he was awarded a medal: WillHaskensMedal . It also lists him as a Private in the Machine Gun Corps. We think that medal is still in the personal effects of my Grandmother and we may still have it. We’re still searching!

This Headstone Schedule confirms that he was in the Canadian Scottish Regiment, although it lists his date of death as July 26th, 1918.

WillHaskensHeadstoneinfo.JPG

Rest in Peace, Will.

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