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August ’21: I’ve been busy! (and I made a terrarium)

This past month has been BUSY. I am good under pressure, but it took a lot of energy and effort to keep things in some sort of resemblance of balance this month.

ALT is always busy in August, because we run our biggest event of the year in September, and it has keep us all working hard. It’ll be worth it when we see it coming together in just over two weeks. If you haven’t already registered, I’d encourage you to join us (and applications for scholarship places remain open, too).

I am looking forward to us convening as a community. Hundreds of participants and speakers, many of whom I know. It will be good to reconnect after what has been quite an isolated year.

Here is a quick run down of what I’ve been up to other than conference prep:

I made a terrarium

Blasus Terrarium Workshop

Thanks for a wonderful independent plant shop, I was able to join a “make your own” terrarium last week. It’s a succulent terrarium, my favourite kind of plant.

It was a great way to do a local activity and go somewhere new – plus, there is now a beautiful new terrarium next to my desk.


I blogged quite a bit this month (for me).

  • JOINING CONVERSATIONS FOR EQUALITY, DIVERSITY, INCLUSION & BELONGING: I recently joined the anti-racism & learning technology group. I am particularly interested in the mentoring and coaching area and also recruitment. I am currently in the process of recruiting for a member of staff and post no. 3 is very relevant to me, encouraging us to ‘disrupt the current procedures in place, and to ensure that we can action diversity rather than pay lip service to racism issues in the sector’.
  • WE ARE LOOKING FOR A COO… A LOOK BEHIND THE RECRUITMENT DOORS: We are currently recruiting for a Chief Operations Officer for ALT, and I couldn’t be more excited! Now we are planning ahead for post-pandemic times. Whilst we have an excellent track record delivering online activities and a lot of expertise in virtual events, we don’t just want to follow our old ways. Instead, we are starting to innovate and that has helped us redistribute our income streams and ensured that we are back to generating the charitable income we need to achieve our mission. Next, we are looking to develop blended ways of doing things and improving what we are already good at. In order to achieve that, we have created a new role and are looking to grow our staff team… .
  • MAKING TIME FOR CPD IN A LEARNING TECHNOLOGY LEADERSHIP ROLE: In the past year it’s been hard to make much time for professional development, or at least the kind of professional development you can plan.
    Like many in my position, I had a huge amount of professional development focused on keeping my organisation running in a crisis, emergency governance, financial crisis management and so forth. Things are STILL extremely busy, and look like they will continue to be for some time to come, but I am making time do actually plan some CPD beyond giving talks and attending (virtual) conferences.
  • POSEIDON, BIN COLLECTOR, JUDGE. WHAT I WANTED TO BE WHEN I WAS A KID: When things are busy, it can be tough to make time and space for YOU. So in order to make some space for ME on MY blog, this is a blog post all about… me 🙂. Reflecting on ‘career’ progress for want of a better word is an important part of charting your own development, and this is something I have been doing as part of reviewing and updating my Senior CMALT Portfolio. The time frame for updating the portfolio is the last 3 years… but what we I look back 30+ years instead?

Book progress

I have been working on Chapter 3. This includes some of the most interesting sections relating to Learning Technology and Open Education, in particular a section on open approaches to leadership.

The chapter was harder to write because I had a lot of things I wanted to refer to which would be covered in other parts of the book, which don’t exist yet. On the plus side, I have managed to get into a good routine with my writing, and I found a regular writing (half) day, which helps a lot.

Read an update and extract here.

Upcoming talks and events

I have updated my running list with new events I am taking part in or speaking at:

  • Talk at MuseumNext Digital Learning Summit, 18 – 20 October, 2021;
  • Discussion Panel: Higher Education Conference: Ignite HE – From Response to Revival, 7 of October 2021;
  • Keynote: Transforming Learning Conference, Sheffield Hallam University, 14 September 2021;


Posey in the canal