• Surrey, British Columbia
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Small Changes; BIG RETURNS
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About Me
I have been teaching since 1974. 16 months ago I was a near techno-fossil. My idea of great tech skills was knowing which kid in class could hook up the video machine. I did not even know what a PowerPoint was. What a difference a year makes!

Now I am particularly interested in working with other nearly fossilized colleagues who are reluctantly admitting to themselves that, in order to make things better for their students, they have to change but don't know where to start.

I'm pleased to announce that I've just been appointed the grad assistant for the Wilkes/Discovery grad program in Instructional Media. Please contact me if you'd like any information. I maintain their blog at:

Comment Wall (55 comments)

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At 8:07am on October 22, 2010, Karen said…
Hello Sue,

Thanks for the invitation to the Canadians Mashup, just seeing it now : (

At 8:59pm on April 5, 2010, Nicole Painchaud said…
Hi Sue:
sorry it took me so long to answer back, between everything I've been doing at school, I finally got online to start building. I teach in Surrey, BC. I'm at Sullivan Heights. Right by you.... I'll know where to go for help. Thanks for the welcome. Will join when I have the time for it. Take care.
At 9:02am on January 27, 2010, Phil Taylor said…
That brings back memories. I grew up in the Maritimes - so not quite the same cold as Winnipeg - but the amount of snow....
At 2:17pm on January 24, 2010, Phil Taylor said…
Good afternoon Sue. Love your bio and understanding we need to change. We have a subscription to Discovery Canada at our school. I do not use it too much as I find the technology videos are limited. That said, one of the physics teachers at my school loves it. We just conducted a workshop on the service (a choice teachers could sign up for) on Friday. Those in attendance liked what they saw. We will be reviewing how much it is actually used at my school before we renew.

There was a change to add more Canadian content this year. I talked with a rep at a conference this past fall, and they talk about having big plans.

Hope this helps.

At 10:18am on January 14, 2010, Ross Thomson said…
Thanks for the Canadians Mashup welcome; I'm in!
At 6:59am on December 17, 2009, Sylvia Riessner said…
Hi Sue,
I don't know Ian Jukes - it's a small place up here but there are still lots of people I don't know.
I'll check out the mashups group on the weekend.
At 7:18pm on December 16, 2009, Nancy Stuewe said…
Part Two:
So now to the dialogue part...Verification comes from understanding through dialogue not repetition and this sort of dialogue leads to a shared understanding of personal experiences. In dialogue we can open understanding not transmit it.

So... a phenomenological inquiry may give me an opportunity to give voice to that which may not be easily heard over the sometimes overpowering drone of traditional research methods. Have we really listened to what teachers are saying is happening in their classrooms in the 21st Century?
Understanding comes by being in the world together. By creating forums in which people can join one another as co-participants to shape something new. It requires a connection in culture through language.
My experience as a teachers is that we have such busy lives. If we are not careful we will reduce teaching to the "101 things I have to do every day to please all the people I really don’t like so much" kind of job. Teachers do not need someone from outside telling them they have to change their practice, yet I do see a need for a shift. One day they may be trusted enough to be asked what they think and involve them in the process of change. I do not think we have listened enough to teachers. I want to give them a voice.
Sorry that was so long. It would not all fit on one comment field
At 7:17pm on December 16, 2009, Nancy Stuewe said…
Part One:
Philosophical Hermeneutics is a little tricky to explain but I will give it a go... As I know it in this moment of time, it is an extraordinary study of the ordinary from the inside. Which is partly why it is difficult to pin down. It is the study of things and happenings as they appear to us. We live in the world so I believe it is really is impossible to pretend we can remove ourselves from it to study something. I believe it is not really a method of generating knowledge but a way of thinking about knowledge. It is an art and a different way to classify meaning. It is often applied to the interpretation of human actions, utterances, products, and institutions. A hermeneutic interpretation requires the individual to understand and sympathize with another's point of view without ignoring your own.
A couple of key points:

* The world is rich and complex with many causes and effects
* Truth is a personal experience not universal
* Knowledge does not have a subject-object relationship
* Understanding and interpreting are essentially the same thing
* Interpretation is a task
* Language is the medium of all understanding
* Language is not a tool but an activity between the speaker and the listener in order to play with understanding
* Knowledge lives in the learner

More to come
At 11:34am on December 16, 2009, Mike Nantais said…
Hello Sue,
Thanks for letting me know about the Canadian Mashup. Like you, I was a public school educator for a long time (30 years) and moved into higher ed. I was fortunate to get work as a sessional instructor for SY Math Methods as I was completing my M.Ed. Eventually a position opened for a full time Assistant Prof in Math Methods & Technology. I was fortunate to get the position. I am now working on a PhD (a change in career at this stage was very invigorating!). So here I am with a new career path and it is lots of fun to teach teacher candidates and do research into topics I am so interested in! Good luck in your quest.
At 10:14am on December 16, 2009, Steve Hargadon said…
Thanks, Sue. You're a star!

suehellman's Videos

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Suehellman's Blog

Canadians at ISTE

Posted on June 11, 2010 at 9:07am 0 Comments

Discovery Education Canada has asked me to reach out this week to all Canadian educators going to ISTE. They're hosting a social gathering for us with food, prizes, and Steve Dembo on

Tuesday, the 29th (6-9 pm) at the local Earls. I've attached the

invitation with all the details below so you can RSVP to Austin -- our

host for the evening.…


Invitation to a Conversation with Ian Jukes

Posted on April 10, 2010 at 3:00pm 0 Comments

The Discovery Education/Wilkes University M.Sc. in Instructional Media Program and Credenda Virtual School in Saskachewan invite you to join us for an conversation with Ian Jukes.

Link to this week's Elluminate room:

Password (for speaker series only):… Continue

Your invitation to join a conversation with Dan Pink

Posted on February 12, 2010 at 7:00am 0 Comments

Dan Pink, author of A Whole New Mind: Why Right-Brainers Will Rule the Future, is one of the most engaging speakers I've heard recently. You may not agree with everything he says, but you'll be thinking about it for a while.

Dan's most recent book, Drive, is about how to activate motivation in students, in workers, and in ourselves. He has graciously agreed to come to the weekly online meeting of the… Continue

Don't be defeated by the deluge of spam!!

Posted on December 13, 2009 at 9:37am 0 Comments

First I want to thank Steven and the people at Ning for trying to figure out what to do in light of the recent deluge. I'm amazed it hasn't happened before now with the community being so large and wide open. Until they do figure this out, we may just have to become determined not to let the spam-bots disconnect us.

Under the forum list, if we click "View All" -- we can get to the recent discussions that are real and still ongoing. Yes, we'll have to click past a few pages of spam… Continue


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