Friday, July 31, 2009


JUL312009, originally uploaded by colemama.

Watching this ibis try to determine what use this forked find might be was absolutely hilarious! He picked it up and tried to manipulate it almost as if he knew how it was used by the human folks - it dropped and he picked it up again and again...finally succombing to the likelihood that it wasn't useful to him! Or perhaps he was just playing?!?!?

Have you observed our students doing some of the same - hungry for knowledge and hoping to access the effective tools to help them learn? Many times our educational institutions offer only those tools with which they are familiar (i.e., paper, pencil, 'sit and get', tests) rather than trying to figure out what our students really need -
* not for just for today's world, but for tomorrow's world....
* not because we've always done it that way, but because it makes sense for addressing needs of the future...
* and not for the sake of the tool itself, but for using the tool for the appropriate function!

2nd Ave N & Gulf of Mexico, Naples, FL

Thursday, July 30, 2009


JUL302009, originally uploaded by colemama.

Got golf? Let the weekend begin! Though I'm not a golfer (maybe in retirement when I'd have time enough to practice for a decent game!), I appreciate the game for it's competition and its playful nature! And typically, the courses are beautifully landscaped - adding an extra aesthetic plus to event. Play and relaxation are such important elements of our balanced life - we need to be sure to include them along with other dimensions in our lives! Naples Beach Holel and Golf Club, Naples, FL

Wednesday, July 29, 2009


JUL292009, originally uploaded by colemama.

The pollen on this red hibiscus has been disturbed - bee? wind? other organism? or due to age? When you think about pollination, it is a pretty amazing process. The transfer of pollen is somewhat of a 'crap shoot' in both the transmission and in the potential results.

So, is there a corollary to learning? In thinking about the transferal of learning, what elements are necessary? What is the evidence of learning? I would bet that many (if not most) would point to teachers and textbooks as necessary requisites and the best evidence of learning likely tests. However, for me, learning doesn't necessarily follow the traditional institution of 'education' - it does require some kind of interaction, but not necessarily with teachers or textbooks (what about self, others, videos, music, etc.). And, authentic assessments have much more value than 'tests' (especially the standardized type)! Naples, FL

Tuesday, July 28, 2009


JUL282009, originally uploaded by colemama.

...and the deliveries/installations have begun! Teacher and student desks and chairs, outdoor furniture, and specialty equipment for our vocational technical programs are flowing in from a constant stream of trucks. Here's the evidence of today's work - a mountain of recyclable cardboard boxes! It is nice to see the tangible rewards of a day's labor...unlike the delayed (and often unknown) rewards we experience in the human services fields. Now...on to tomorrow's deliveries! :) Lorenzo Walker campus, Naples, FL

Monday, July 27, 2009


JUL272009, originally uploaded by colemama.

Looks like this beach bicycle rack is in competition with the shrubbery for prime 'real estate'...or perhaps there is a reason for this 'take-over'! It is fascinating to consider the potential impact of the invasion of 'chaos' to the 'order' here. The bicycles seem to be taking it all in stride...but the outsider's view, this may look disruptive. Often times I've walked into classrooms that, from the naked eye, appear to be disorganized and out of control; however, identifiable features indicate that it really is a type of 'controlled chaos' - one that considers individual learning styles and goals, one that invites conversation and interaction, and one that can have a transformational change on the nature of learning. Of course, not all disruptive observations translate to a positive effect (in fact, some are truly quite negative), but it is worth a deeper look! 4th Ave N & Gulf of Mexico, Naples, FL

Sunday, July 26, 2009


JUL262009, originally uploaded by colemama.

Look at all of these cute little VW bugs lined up at the dealership! So love that the palm trees are reflected in their hoods -- almost all the way down the line, too! This display is one of the more colorful, as cars (at least in our area) have been limiting their options to the more neutral tones (white, silver, black). Airport Rd & Radio Rd, Naples, FL

Saturday, July 25, 2009


JUL252009, originally uploaded by colemama.

What was once swampy acreage has greened up into a lot of tall grass...but that didn't stop someone from creating their own path. This reminds me of two things: One, the age-old question, "Where do we build the new sidewalks on the campus?" with the best answer being, "Wait a few months until students create their own paths, then you can formalize them with concrete!" There's probably some additional depth of thought there, but moving on to the second reminder...blazing a trail! Entering territory with no marked trail has risks, but without trail blazers, inertia and stagnation would lead to rot and destruction. Those who take the risks are often taunted for their chosen path...and, sometimes admired for leading effective change, though that may come in retrospect. Lorenzo Walker campus, Naples, FL

Friday, July 24, 2009


JUL242009, originally uploaded by colemama.

Though all of us have the same limited amount of time in a day, some of us are better (or worse!) at using that time efficiently and effectively. As I increase in years and experience, I reflect on that perspective a bit more - though not sure I can say that the action piece is much different! Perhaps it is because my inner core values are more in line with my realities, but time is certainly more precious as I age! Below the Naples Pier, Naples, FL

Thursday, July 23, 2009


JUL232009, originally uploaded by colemama.

Some days it is difficult to tear my eyes away from the sky...Today the sun's rays spotlight the sky, illuminated from behind the puffy storm clouds (that did not, in fact, yield any rain)! The power of such an attention getting device is only as good as a connection to the viewer - works for me, but others may be blinded by events on the ground. With varying focal points, we have challenges in meeting the needs of others, but acknowledging our differences is the first important step! US 41 E & Shadowlawn Dr, Naples, FL

Wednesday, July 22, 2009


JUL222009, originally uploaded by colemama.

Pondering my 365 daily image today and ended up at the Garden of Hope and Courage, but disappointed that I missed the light ... until I rounded the lake and looked back to see this duck in the water's reflection of the hospital parking garage! By nature, I'm a planner, but the 365 project is a great teacher for increasing spontaneity! I'm still awed at how much quality in life can come from a quick 5 minute photo shoot (with no plans in mind)...and, of course, there's always a positive quality in reflective thinking! 2nd Ave N & 8th St, Naples, FL

Tuesday, July 21, 2009


JUL212009, originally uploaded by colemama.

Ceiling mounted hardware is ready for the video projector installation - one of many in our new campus classrooms and meeting rooms. I like the inverse color processing on this photo - electrifying and emphasizing the connectivity between technology and its purpose of facilitating learning (at least that is my interpretation!). :) Lorenzo Walker campus, Naples, FL

Monday, July 20, 2009


JUL202009, originally uploaded by colemama.

A trip to the post office yields little but junk mail ... these days, the majority of important items comes in digital format - what a difference a decade makes! In addition to the function, the form is institutionalized. The blandness and similarity of the boxes is diversified only by the numbers on their doors, resembling jail cells! Still, I hang on to this antiquated tradition ... for no really good reason! 6th Ave S & 9th St, Naples, FL

Sunday, July 19, 2009


JUL192009, originally uploaded by colemama.

At rest, this boat hull is idle in a beach-side chickee hut awaiting the next adventure! We all need moments to recharge and rejuvenate, especially with our stressful world. Unfortunately, most of us don't discipline ourselves to truly 'power down' on a routine basis. We miss out on the chance to invigorate and revitalize. Daily meditation and/or yoga can be an opportunity for focused relaxation. What about the intense engagement in an activity of choice (i.e., photography, music, or other creations)? Even though the brain and body are not at rest, can the fulfillment of those activities provide a renewed energy? Hmmm... 3rd Ave N & Gulf of Mexico, Naples, FL

Saturday, July 18, 2009


JUL182009, originally uploaded by colemama.

Not a great shot, but this crescent moon (cropped and heavily doctored in post production) is a tribute to two interconnected events: the 40 year anniversary of landing a man on the moon and the passing of a memorable and down-to-earth journalist who reported the Apollo 11 moon landing and dreamed of his own lunar journey. Cronkite's exclamation, 'whew...boy' and his temporary loss for words are just as telling as his reporting, "Armstrong is on the moon -- Neil Armstrong, 38-year-old American, standing on the surface of the moon."

What a great moment for all ...and that's the way it is...
Rest in Peace, Walter Cronkite (1916-2009)

and now I see a smile in the heaven's crescent tonight....Naples, FL

Friday, July 17, 2009


JUL172009, originally uploaded by colemama.

Showing off in a courtship ritual, this Cuban brown anole extends its colorful dewlap and bobs up and down (thus a less than crisp shot) to attract the female (out of photo - but she was nearby). Sometimes we need to use a variety of attention-getting devices to stand out in the crowd! :) 4th Ave N & Gulf of Mexico, Naples, FL

Thursday, July 16, 2009


JUL162009, originally uploaded by colemama.

uhmm....I don't think so - pointing drivers into the retention ditch and fence is NOT the intended goal here! :) Ah, but the intention was good, they say...Messages are sometimes misinterpreted despite good intentions, but is there not a responsibility on the part of both the sender and receiver to clarify and check for understanding? Difficult to do, but critical for effective communication! Lorenzo Walker campus, Naples, FL

Wednesday, July 15, 2009


JUL152009, originally uploaded by colemama.

Long day of moving at work and very tired .. in fact, almost made this one my photo of the day! :) The beginnings of a beach sunset always seems to put things in perspective. So, though my verse is not very creative, nature's horizontal stripes of sun, clouds, and water provide a little respite for the eyes. 3rd Ave N & Gulf of Mexico, Naples, FL

Tuesday, July 14, 2009


JUL142009, originally uploaded by colemama.

Unusual to see these white lilies blooming this time of year...they don't last long at all in the recent dry, heat wave though. But something in the environmental conditions (they are located on a street median, so no special garden TLC) has coaxed these buds open to share their beauty. Similarly, working with adolescents, who are often struggling with their position in the world, look for stability and nourishment in their environment - sometimes, they make it on their own...most often, they benefit from that TLC! 3rd Ave S. & 6th St, Naples, FL

Monday, July 13, 2009


JUL132009, originally uploaded by colemama.

I was amused to see this neon sign not only because it hangs over a single tomato, but because it is in the window of a restaurant's kitchen facing an alley with no patron entry...Amazingly (or perhaps because of the sign?) there were a number of cars outside the front entrance when I made the walk around! :) Nice smile, especially for a Monday! But it also reminded me that we often have to 'back door' our way to change - not sure how the tomato fits in, though...Any takers? :) 8th St & 6th Ave S, Naples, FL

Sunday, July 12, 2009


JUL122009, originally uploaded by colemama.

Sun-bleached coral washed ashore with the morning tide - its light white color in contrast with the 'dirty' sand upon which it rests. Just another treasure to appreciate for its beauty and then walk by!
5th Ave N. & Gulf of Mexico, Naples, FL

Saturday, July 11, 2009


JUL112009, originally uploaded by colemama.

Masts and riggings, sail-wrapped booms and lines are all multiplied many fold in this view - it looks quite unorganized and chaotic. But every object has a purpose and an interaction with other objects on the sailboat! There are similarities amongst the boats, but there are certainly differences as well. Taking ownership of one of these boats is quite an expensive upkeep. Even then, they are not really owned, as once they are released from the slip, they take on a life of their own when the sails are raised and the winds are blowing. They can be managed to some degree with a good understanding of boat's characteristics and environmental influences, but one always needs to be ready for the 'unexpected'! Sounds potentially interchangeable with our notion of students....Gulfshore Blvd and Mooring Line Dr., Naples, FL

Friday, July 10, 2009


JUL102009, originally uploaded by colemama.

Stopping to snap this Crown of Thorns at at traffic light on a busy Friday afternoon. Thankfully, there are no thorns visible here, but that doesn't mean they don't lurk beneath the surface!

So, there are pros and cons with just about everything in life and depending upon your view, you may have a propensity for concentrating on one side or the other. As the proverbial 'fence sitter', I tend to seek balance for most things, but I do concede to having decidedly strong opinions on some issues. Thus, I can be a 'thorn' in someone's side if the 'passion' for or against it is there - sharp, relentless, and piercing. Perhaps it is a good characteristic to temper, but ultimately the goal is to produce an aesthetically pleasing and functional beauty! US 41 E. & Golden Gate Parkway, Naples, FL

Thursday, July 9, 2009


JUL092009, originally uploaded by colemama.

You never know what you will find on a campus 'under construction'....this rusty chain has been in the parking lot for a couple of days now. The length-wise perspective represents the infinite potential for interconnected links, rusty or not! Unlike some meanings of the word, 'chain', this perspective does not insinuate restraint, bondage, slowed movement, dependence, or ordered. Instead, this chain (despite it's age) shows flexibility, connectivity, and a unification that is strong but not confining. The ability to stretch out to it's limits and still supple enough to change shape are positive characteristics for endurance - just like many of the networks forged in this digital community! Lorenzo Walker campus, Naples, FL

Wednesday, July 8, 2009


JUL082009, originally uploaded by colemama.

Inspired by Martha's Bowl of Cherries and Bob's Rubarb Muffins, I decided to try a food photograph - not one of my strengths - though eating doesn't usually seem to be an issue!! This dish is a healthy one of fresh picked mango, ripe blueberries, and a sprinkle of homemade granola. Imagine if we could eat like this everyday for every meal!! :) Naples, FL

Tuesday, July 7, 2009


JUL072009, originally uploaded by colemama.

The Garden of Hope and Courage, adjacent to Naples Community Hospital, is a wonderful reprieve from the 'real world'. Tucked into a corner of the grounds, it offers benches for reading or quiet conversation, flora and fauna for environmental appeal, life-size sculptures for aesthetic interest, and even yoga under the pavillion (as I discovered this evening!) - and, there's a geocache there, too, but it still a 'DNF' for me!

Hope and courage - thankfully, the emphasis of the words go hand-in-hand in this garden. The need to stay positive is so important in the process of healing. Even in the face of reality of terminal illness, acceptance is enhanced with a bittersweet optimism. The soft petals of this orange tropical ginger plant stand in sharp contrast to the rough textured palm tree, but both provide a strength for those who seek it. Naples Community Hospital, 2nd Ave N & 8th St., Naples, FL

Monday, July 6, 2009


JUL062009, originally uploaded by colemama.

A request for photographs of our new buildings on campus put lots of images in the camera today! We are expecting the certificate of occupancy mid-July - right around the corner! The architectural lines are clean and linear, looking almost industrial (those elements are definitely in the interior), but with a few creative design touches!

Many years ago when I was involved with the construction of a community college campus, my thoughts were always focused on the 'life blood' of the campus buildings - no matter how beautiful or functional the buildings are, if the students are not there to 'test' them, the structures are meaningless! Those thoughts remain...A recent NECC debate about the merits and liabilities of traditional 4-walled classrooms accentuates the need to review the issue. Do the buildings truly dictate their underlying purpose? Can the structures be modified to adjust to changing needs? How does the building promote (or not) community? How does the aesthetic quality of the architecture influence learning of students...or does it? Ultimately, what is learning all about - does it even need a building - all of the time? some of the time? Lorenzo Walker campus, Naples, FL

Sunday, July 5, 2009


JUL052009, originally uploaded by colemama.

Despite the dent and the rust, some things live on! The shiny emblem infers 'quality' is characteristic of Schwinn, but one wonders if their use of the word, quality, is simply a defining attribute or if there is further inference in superior caliber. To further analyze, does the company consider quality coverage of the entire bicycle or only certain parts? Is the word used primarily as a marketing ploy or does it represent the underpinnings of the company's values and culture? The fact that the frame and the tires of the bicycle are clean, shiny and relatively new-looking is in stark contrast to the rusty chain and pedals - due to inferior quality of the manufacturer or maintenance neglect of the the user?

Lots of unanswered and seemingly unimportant questions...taking the time to think about and perhaps research potential answers is a building block for innovation and change! Are we teaching students to pursue their curiosities in meaningful ways? 4th Ave N & Gulf of Mexico, Naples, FL

Saturday, July 4, 2009


JUL042009, originally uploaded by colemama.

Happy Birthday, America! Though Independence Day is usually documented in red, white, and blue or parades and fireworks (I still may try to snap some of those...), this is my selected image of the day. Our Mother Earth brings us so many delights and treasures each day - occurring despite our existence as human beings. The words of the Declaration of Independence, though, are only words...and not realities without our energy, thought, priority and actions. This day is a reminder to do my part in making the following words a reality:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.
~ Declaration of Independence

4th Ave N & Gulf of Mexico, Naples, FL

Friday, July 3, 2009


JUL032009, originally uploaded by colemama.

Rocky, adopted by a friend, demonstrates his content and aloofness as only a cat can do! He's a lucky guy, rescued as the runt from a roadside litter dump - a lucky guy indeed! It is sad to think of the number of animals that are euthanized annually because of the irresponsibility of human beings. Our county nearly had a major crisis when the budget choice was to eliminate animal adoption services due to lack of funding - Yikes! Not a good decision given the spiral effect. Fortunately, it appears, that a grassroots movement to squash that budget cut has taken hold! Marco Island, FL

Thursday, July 2, 2009


JUL022009, originally uploaded by colemama.

Little did I know when I snapped this shot of Ric's sign that a diversity of architecture, street lights and the ubiquitous palm would emerge. Many of us have remarked that this daily photo project has offered unique perspectives of our world, even if it is post-shutter! Though this was taken in my general neighborhood, the gray building was foreign to me - guess I haven't noticed its structure being formed! Our perceptions are so selective and individualized, especially in the typical 'rat race' of life. While understandable, it is nice to take a moment,however brief, to see things differently - we can learn so much! US 41 E & 7th Ave N, Naples, FL

Wednesday, July 1, 2009


JUL012009, originally uploaded by colemama.

Blackbird singing in the dead of night
Take these broken wings and learn to fly
All your life
You were only waiting for this moment to arise

Black bird singing in the dead of night
Take these sunken eyes and learn to see
all your life
you were only waiting for this moment to be free

Blackbird fly, Blackbird fly
Into the light of the dark black night.
~ The Beatles

Empowerment is such an important gift we can give to ourselves and to those around us - especially those who are disenfranchised or too young to understand the concept. Spending the last couple of days trying to connect virtually with some of the members of my PLN (learning network) has rejuvenated a desire to re-examine my role in transforming our world for the better...I can only imagine how I would feel if I'd been to NECC 2009 in person! The connections, virtual or f2f, made and nourished are so beneficial to the mind and the psyche! So 'take these broken wings and learn to fly...' Lorenzo Walker Campus, Naples, FL