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The Co-operative Catalyst Blog

The Co-operative Catalyst Blog

Written by Mary Beth Hertz
July 29, 2011

As a caring adult, I am committed to facilitating a positive and rich learning environment, where the negative and unnecessary wounds traditionally inflicted by schools, will not have a place. I will build a culture that honors, listens to, nurtures, and empowers all learners. I will not tolerate events, actions or words that cause any student to think or feel that they are stupid or worthless. I will create a haven where students feel free to explore new areas and thoughts, take risks, and stay connected to the inherent joy of learning. I will not employ methods which replace this intrinsic motivation with external gauges such as praise, gold stars, or grades. And while I sign this pledge with all good intentions, I will utilize the tools, awareness, and network of peers that I have to ensure that I
stay true.

–The Cooperative Catalyst Team

This is the pledge of the group blog, the Cooperative Catalyst (, a diverse group of educators from around the world who share their thoughts, ideas and visions for better teaching and learning in a truly democratic way through their blogging.

Started by Paula White, Chad Sansing, Adam Burk, and Aaron Eyler in 2010, the Catalyst has now grown to over 50 bloggers from all over the world. To get a sampling, check out the Who We Are page.The member-bloggers are dedicated to discussing the kinds of changes and practices in education that are often not covered by mainstream media or the talking heads of education reform. It is the hope of the Co-op that through their varied and passionate voices that their message will reach a larger audience and begin to influence the larger conversations going on around education.

In the spirit of co-operation, each member has publishing and editing privileges and can post whenever/whatever she would like to further the conversation. In addition, many discussions go on behind the scenes through the Google Group they use to communicate with each other. These discussions are always positive and supportive and decisions are made through consensus. Often, these private discussions become larger discussions on the blog. The co-op has lively comment conversations, with co-opers pushing each other’s thinking, asking questions and using the medium to further the conversation. It is nearly impossible to find an anonymous comment or comment ‘troll’ on the co-op. Commenting serves as a way to delve deeper, not just react.

The video above is an interview with some of the Co-op bloggers on the Teachers Teaching Teachers show on July 20, 2011 using Google Plus.

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