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Bammy awards

Blog 2015
Here are the 2015 Educators Voice Honorees!
Written by Errol St.Clair Smith
Thursday, 02 July 2015 00:00

The votes have been counted! The honorees list has been published!

Nominations and community voting for the Bammy Educators' Voice Awards began on April 7th and closed on May 15th. During that period nominations were received in 27 categories across the education field.

Today we released the names of the people who received the most votes in each category and who were identified by their peers in the general education community for their exceptional contributions, collaborative spirit and modeling of what it means to be a 21st-century educator. The outcomes always yield surprises and this year was no exception. Most exciting are the new faces and voices that surfaced during the process.

Note that the Educators' Voice Award is *not* the Bammy Award. Many people have been confused about this and ask about the difference between the two. The Educators' Voice honorees are determined by popular vote (similar to the People’s Choice Awards). The Bammy Award honorees are selected by the Academy of Education Arts and Sciences Board of Governors. Bammy Award honorees are not publicly announced until the Bammy Awards event in September.

Each serves a different purpose.The main objective of the Educators' Voice Award is to cast a wide net and ensure that the awards don't just end up recognizing the same people we know and read about all the time. The goal of the Educators' Voice is to surface great work being done by educators who are way off the radar screen.  Last year, the Educators' Voice Awards brought educators whom we had never heard of to our attention and a couple actually went on to be selected by the Academy to also receive a Bammy Award.  

Congratulations to all of the honorees, and thanks to all who nominated candidates and voted!! Educators' Voice honorees automatically become members of the Academy of Education Arts and Sciences’ Council of Peers.

If you know any of the honorees (and even if you don't), be sure to congratulate them! Here is the link to the list.

 
The One Thing Every Person in Education Wants to Know
Written by Errol St.Clair Smith
Saturday, 02 May 2015 00:00

Three words: Uplifting. Inspiring. Encouraging. Watching the Twitter stream on #bammyawards as people from all across the education community validate each other is such a welcome break from the "news" that consumes our daily lives. But behind all of this something very simple yet profound is happening: people are telling other people that their work and their lives matter.

How many of us really know how much the work we are pouring our lives into matters and is deeply appreciated? How much does knowing that our work really matters matter? I am personally struck by the depth of appreciation being shared by some who've been nominated, and I think these tweets speak volumes:

tweet1    

tweet2

twetet3   

  tweet4

Tweet 5

FIVE PIVOTAL QUESTIONS:

 1. Why don't we regularly take more time to tell the people we respect and grow from how much their work matters?
 2. Why do we have so much to say about the things that matter so little and so little to say about the people who matter so much?  
 3. What if every single one of us knew that our work and lives matter?
 4. What if everyone knew about the great work being done in your schools every single day?
 5. How might that knowledge impact how you are perceived and treated by parents, policy makers and the general public?

The consistent stream of positive validation flowing on #bammyawards is good. Great would be turning that stream into a raging river of acknowledgement, validation and positive affirmation that could not be ignored. Elementary school teacher Flora Lerenmen said it best in a recent article in EDWeek:

"A critical mass of media-savvy educators shouting their positive results from the proverbial rooftops can echo far and wide. So let's elevate teacher voices!" 

Today a proactive group of educators officially launched the "Break the Code of Silence" initiative. It's an inspiring example of an often-fragmented community coming together to deliver a pivotal message. It's time to share the positive stories of the great work happening in our schools. You are invited to help dial up the volume by adding your voice.Tweet this, share the video, or learn more below:

National Coalition of Educators Collaborate to "Break the Code of Silence" and Share Positive Education Stories 


 
[UPDATE] 17+ Examples of the Quality That Defines the Best Education Leaders
Written by Errol St.Clair Smith
Wednesday, 29 April 2015 00:00

Want to thank and acknowledge those of you who have already voted for or nominated your peers for a Bammy Award. Special shout-outs to Academy members Todd Nesloney, Tony Sinanis, Nicholas Provenzano, Steven Santilli, Jon Bergman, Jasper Fox Sr., Vicki Davis, William Chamberlain, Regina Lamourelle, Pam Moran, Amanda Dykes, Rich Kiker, Sharon Plante, Jason Flom, Eric Sheninger, Patrick Larkin, Jerry Blumengarten,  Elissa Malespina, and Tom Murray. (Let me know if I missed you.)

Thanks for modeling for all of us what Jim Collins calls the highest level of leadership: being self-confident enough to set up others for success. 

We know that some primarily see the Bammy Awards as a platform for “receiving” recognition, but the real magic of the Bammy Awards happens when people discover the amazing impact of using them as a way of “giving” recognition. 

Yesterday, I talked with Stephen Santilli about the extraordinarily intentional way he is using the Bammy Awards in his school. Stephen is a lead learner at William Davies Middle School; a member of NASSP, AMLE, ASCD, MJPSA and CAPSA; and the 2014 Bammy Award recipient for Middle School Principal. I was floored as he explained to me the extent to which he went this week to nominate key members of his school, his district and his PLN. I was further awed as he shared his plans to create a school-level awards program that would feed into the annual Bammy Awards nomination process. Yes, my jaw is still sitting on the floor. 

Stephen Santilli epitomizes the highest level of leader, who sees recognition and acknowledgement as something to be given abundantly, versus hoarded for himself. He is clearly confident enough to set others up for success and to take joy in seeing others distinguished for the contributions they are making. Stephen represents not only what’s good in American education, but he also could be the poster child for the very spirit of the Bammy Awards. Thank you, Stephen, for being an uber mensch! In an era where many define education leaders by the number of followers they have on Twitter; you and all of the council of peers members above represent the constellation of level-five leaders I follow closely, for guidance on what true leadership looks like in the real world.  Bravo!


 
[UPDATE] Four Hundred Examples of What’s Good in American Education
Written by Errol St. Clair Smith
Saturday, 25 April 2015 00:00

Wow! What a surprise to discover that there are now over 400 Twitter chats dedicated to offering  support and professional development for virtually every interest and passion in the education field.

Just this week we saw a new chat being launched that the founder described as being for “curriculum nerds.” It’s increasingly true that if there is an education topic you are passionate about, “there’s a chat for that.”

The collaboration, sharing and modeling that occur weekly on education Twitter chats across the nation may be the quintessential example of what’s right in American education.

It's also  noteworthy that this worldwide phenomenon was started right here in America with Edchat - the brain child of Tom Whitby, Shelly Terrell and Steven Anderson.  

In case you haven't heard, education Twitter chats have become such an important expression of the spirit that is driving education forward that the Academy of Education Arts and Sciences has decided to add the category to this year's Bammy Awards.

For the first time, “the entire collaborative community of educators” who participate in any of the education Twitter chats can be recognized with a Bammy Award. The intent is to acknowledge the contribution being made by that entire chat community.

The new Twitter chat category will enable members who participate in a chat to nominate that chat, vote for that chat and share stories of how the chat is supporting them and their professional development. Adding the chat category to the Bammy Awards will help more educators -- connected and unconnected -- discover the chats and find those that suit their needs.

The Bammy Award will ultimately be presented to and accepted by the chat founders or moderators on behalf of the entire chat community they helped develop and lead. However, the award is not focused on the leadership; it’s intended to recognize the amazing contributions being made by all of the people who come together regularly to make these education chats happen.

What are your favorite education Twitter chats? Which chats are making a difference in your life and practice?  See which chat’s others are raving about:

See Chats and Vote  |  Nominate a Chat  



 
An Outlier’s Take on the Bammy Awards
Written by Errol St.Clair Smith
Thursday, 09 October 2014 00:00

There are a number of “my-take-on-the-Bammy-Awards” articles floating around out there post-2014 Bammy Awards.  Now that the dust has settled a bit, I wanted to add yet another, but from a somewhat different perspective.

First, thanks to all who helped make the 2014 Bammy Awards a special evening for so many people. In important ways the evening eclipsed our expectations and we’re grateful to all who made it possible --from those who nominated and voted to those who got dressed up and came out to join the fun.

That said, we were all deeply disappointed that the live stream was not available and I want to personally apologize to those who were let down by the loss of internet access at the venue. Thanks again to Todd Nesloney, who jumped in and created a Twitter back channel, so everyone could follow the awards and discover the outcomes along with those in attendance. Todd; you rocked!

A New Vision for the Bammy Awards

This year’s Bammy Awards were different before they even got started because this year the Bammy Awards had to be good. In fact, they had to be more than good; they had to be inspiring, and the centerpiece of our plan to make the evening inspiring was the introduction of the 3iTalks.

Indeed, the highlight of this year’s Bammy Awards were the 3iTalks. The six presenters were as uplifting in their own unique ways as we had hoped. Stephen Ritz, Vicki Davis, Joe Sanfelippo, Tony Sinanis, Principal Salome Thomas-El and Taylor Mali made us think, laugh, shed a tear and feel good about being part of the education community. Their messages rang with authenticity and each clearly understood the audience’s experiences and sensibilities and spoke the language of the community. Of all the changes we made to the Bammy Awards this year, these passionate, relevant and cogent three-minute presentations were most responsible for making the evening noteworthy. We thank all of the presenters again for lifting us up and for adding a key ingredient required to realize the vision for the Bammy Awards.  We thank Eric Sheninger and Kristen Swanson for braving the unpredictable world of hosting a live awards program. You rocked too!

We’re also thankful to those educators who have taken the time to share their post-event views of the 2014 Bammy Awards. The posts we’re seeing and personal letters we’re receiving suggest that the event hit the goal of acknowledging, honoring and inspiring educators across the community in a meaningful way. They also suggest that the seeds of greater inspiration and greater impact have been planted and taken root.

In Malcom Gladwell’s book Outliers, he talks about operating at the extreme outer edge of what is statistically plausible. Three years ago the idea of the Bammy Awards was clearly one those “outer-edge” notions, but the links bellow hint at what is now possible. If you would like to glimpse the future of the Bammy Awards, take a look at the links below then imagine what would happen if we multiplied this ten fold.

We are nurturing a big, hairy, audacious vision for the Bammy Awards that continues to live on the outer edges of the plausible and we are excited about the possibilities we see ahead. We look forward to the challenge of scaling the Bammy Awards for greater impact and we are grateful to all of you who are close to the classroom, who have guided us and challenged us to do better with each evolution. 

UNward! (Definition: Onward in an UNtraditional, UNconventional, UNorthodox, anything but UNimaginative way)

Errol

Related Links:

http://patch.com/new-jersey/parsippany/parsippany-school-educational-technology-supervisor-wins-bammy-award-0?utm_source=article-mostrecent&utm_medium=rss&utm_term=schools&utm_campaign=recirc&utm_content=normal#.VD590fldXTo

 
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