This page is devoted to exploring questions such as:
  • How can we help others to try on new perspectives long enough that a change in thinking can occur?
  • How do cultures and subcultures influence change?
  • How might we take advantage of "informal system behaviors" to create formal change? (Thompson, p. 9)
  • How might you establish links to key people in other fields that could create a critical mass of energized leadership for change?

Group Facilitators: Cindy Kendall, MI; Cherice Montgomery, MI; Marcia Rosenbusch, IA

Key Principles

  • True learning, by its very nature, produces change.
  • A change in thinking always precedes a change in action.
  • Thus, leading change is not so much about getting people to engage in the physical actions of change as it is about helping them to try on new perspectives.
  • Once perspective has shifted, cognitive, conceptual, emotional, physical, and social change will follow--particularly if a culture or context supportive of that change has been simultaneously established.
  • Meaningful learning must be the paramount goal, then, for teachers and for students!
  • This has major implications for the work of leadership.

Interactive Experiences

Dave Werner's Portfolio 2006 - An outstanding example of the powerful effects layering aesthetic, conceptual, emotional, intellectual, and visual elements using mixed media. Be sure to watch the reflect/respect video (the one on the right) to hear more about how he attempted to create changes in perception

DesignForChange.jpg - Select a country and a language to see how children in schools are using a 4-step design process (Feeling, Imagining, Doing, and Sharing) to improve their communities. (Site also includes a song and a poster)


"Organizational structures will move in relation to one another" (Thompson, p. 13).


SoYouThinkYouWantToInnovate.JPG - Nicely designed booklet that outlines key systemic factors that affect innovation in education, along with self-assessment tools near the end.

Block, Peter. (2003). The answer to how is yes: Acting on what matters. San Francisco, CA: Berrett-Koehler Publishers, Inc. ISBN 1-57675-271-2.
A phenomenal, thought-provoking book that reframes change in terms of the "why" instead of the "how," and in so doing, expands perspectives on how to reculture an organization in order to initiate, implement, and sustain meaningful change.

Fullan, Michael. (1993). Innovation, reform, and restructuring strategies. In G. Cawelti (Ed.). Challenges and achievements of American education: 1993 yearbook of the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, pp. 116-133. Alexandria, VA: Association for Supervision & Curriculum Development.

Hooper, Don W. (2001, October). Virtual learning, in the box or out? The School Administrator. Retrieved June 28, 2007, from

Lundin, Stephen C., Harry Paul, & John Christensen. (2000). Fish! NY: Hyperion. ISBN 0-7868-6602-0.

Maurer, Rick. (n.d.). Resistance to change: Why it matters and what to do about it. Beyond Resistance. Retrieved June 22, 2007, from
Rick Maurer defines resistance, outlines 3 types of resistance (lack of information, emotional/physiological, and systemic), explains why typical approaches to change fail, and offers approaches to addressing resistance.

Maurer, Rick. (n.d.). 23 great ideas to keep change alive. Beyond Resistance. Retrieved June 22, 2007, from
Strategies for sustaining a change once it has been implemented, including addressing power-related issues, assessment, celebrating accomplishments, continuing to acquire and distribute digestible amounts of information, maintaining focus, organizational planning, painting vision, protecting the process, and symbolic action.

Patterson, Jerry. (2001, June). Resilience in the face of adversity: Five leadership strengths for moving forward personally and professionally in difficult times. The School Administrator. Retrieved June 22, 2007, from
Fantastic article from the American Association of School Administrators that outlines 5 strengths leaders can leverage to persevere in spite of resistance. Great for practitioners.

Sizer, Theodore R., & Nancy Faust Sizer. (1999). The students are watching: Schools and the moral contract. Boston, MA: Beacon Press. ISBN 0-8070-3121-6.

Thompson, Ann, G. Bull, & Jerry Willis. (1998). SITE position paper. Statement of basic principles and suggested actions (Ames White Paper). Available at

Music Related to Change

Waiting on the World to Change - From Continuum by John Mayer - chericem1 chericem1

Resources Related to Change

Stages of Innovation - In order to advocate effectively, it is important to understand that your audience is likely to be comprised of a number of different groups with distinct characteristics, each of which needs an approach tailored to their specific needs and concerns - chericem1 chericem1

Landscape of the Technology Adoption Cycle (Bell Curve of Adopters) - What are some of the ways that advocacy can be used to bridge the chasm between early adopters and the early majority? - chericem1 chericem1

Phases of Adoption - By considering how the perspective of each person you encounter corresponds to the yellow chart in this article, you can better identify where they are on the adoption continuum regarding the initiative you are proposing and what kind of support they need in order to move to the next phase. - chericem1 chericem1

Products: Resistance

Change & the Walls of Resistance - This graphic demonstrates the key role that perspective plays in the change process and illustrates the high cost of a major shift in perspective - chericem1 chericem1

Where Do Change Initiatives Break Down? - Knowing-Doing Gap - A great synopsis of some of the factors that keep people who know what to do from doing it - chericem1 chericem1

Beyond Resistance Article - Outlines 3 majors reasons people resist and offers suggestions for addressing each one - chericem1 chericem1

Designing for Change: Getting Around the Wall with Paradigm Shifts (The Power of Combining Design & Emerging Technologies)

Rhetorical Triangle - This graphic depicts 3 key elements that must be considered when designing advocacy efforts designed to produce change - chericem1 chericem1

Stages of Change, Enabling Factors, & Channels - This graphic lists the stages of change, the kind of support that is needed at each level, and the kind of media that is most well-suited to providing that support - chericem1 chericem1

Videos Related to Change

Help Desk - Why was this video so hysterically funny? What implications does it have for your present personal and professional contexts? - ckendall ckendall

Here's to the Crazy Ones - chericem1 chericem1

Barry Schwartz: The Paradox of Choice - TED Talks - This video is not nearly as engaging as the book, but the last section (Income) sums it up pretty well. Useful in thinking about how we present options to mentees. - chericem1 chericem1

Web 2.0 Tools For Facilitating Change

Blogger - Use a variety of pre-made templates to create your own blogs that support the uploading of media-based content for free. Blogs can function as particularly effective tools for communicating rationales for change, sharing vision, initiating conversation about proposed change initiatives, and soliciting feedback (via the comments sections of each post). A collaborative blog with multiple authors can also be a powerful way to involve busy teachers in creating change by inviting them to express opinions, discuss important issues, and share ideas and information. - chericem1 external image chericem1-sm.jpg

Google Alerts – Lets you have Google notify you via an e-mail message when anything is posted on the web on the topic of your choice. A super way to keep up with the latest changes in the profession. - chericem1 external image chericem1-sm.jpg

Google Reader - After creating a free account, teachers can use this service to keep track of the webpages to which they have "subscribed" (for free and very easily) using RSS technology. A good way to keep up with changes in the profession. - chericem1 external image chericem1-sm.jpg

Google Scholar – This search engine returns only scholarly articles and books, tells you how many people have cited them, and links you to related articles. Great for gathering credible information about factors that might affect change initiatives. - chericem1 external image chericem1-sm.jpg

Go2Web2.0 Directory - A handy directory of Web 2.0 services leaders can use to facilitate change. - chericem1 external image chericem1-sm.jpg

Jumpcut - Allows you to edit digital video for free online. Use it to help others envision the benefits of change. - chericem1 external image chericem1-sm.jpg

Media Convert - Do you have trouble keeping up with changes in technology and find yourself unable to open the files others send you? This free, slick little online tool will let you identify a media file on your desktop or at a particular URL and convert it to the format of your choice simply by filling in a simple form. No registration required. - chericem1 external image chericem1-sm.jpg

Motivator - Create your own motivational posters that extol the benefits of change for free with just a digital photo and a few clicks. Download the posters you create, e-mail them, print them, or upload them to Flickr. You can also order print copies. - chericem1 external image chericem1-sm.jpg

Picnik - Absolutely fabulous, free, easy-to-use, extremely functional, online image editing software. Lets you rotate, crop, color, or edit photos and will soon offer special effects. Interfaces very well with Flicker. (Still in beta) Use it to take photos of existing practices and then edit them to help others envision the change you are advocating. - chericem1 external image chericem1-sm.jpg

Quickmaps - Allows you to pinpoint locations on a Google map, title and annotate the map, draw on the map, save all your annotations, and then generates a code you can embed into your blog or website to display the map. Great for representing the geographical impact of change initiatives at the national level. - chericem1 external image chericem1-sm.jpg

Skype – Free software that allows you to talk to anyone in the world (up to 4 people at once) through your computer for free with a cheap headset mic (like the telemarketers wear) as long as the other person also has the software. Great for group conversations about change initiatives. You can also call landlines or cell phones, but there is a charge for that. - chericem1 external image chericem1-sm.jpg

Survey Monkey - A super survey tool for collecting information and opinions from stakeholders prior to initiating a change, and for collecting data in order to evaluate changes that have been implemented. The tool aggregates and tabulates the results for you. - chericem1 external image chericem1-sm.jpg

Swicki - Free software that allows you to create a search engine on your site that will evolve the results over time to better serve users based on their click patterns. Super for tailoring your resources to the needs of those visiting your site. - chericem1 external image chericem1-sm.jpg

Swivel - Lets you explore, compare, and share data. - chericem1 external image chericem1-sm.jpg

The Amazing You Tube Tools Collection - A collection of tools to help those interested in using/publishing materials to YouTube. Great for those who are looking for ways to make successful changes more visible to the community. - chericem1 external image chericem1-sm.jpg

Tubes - Allows users to drag and drop content (audio files, bookmarks, documents, e-mail contact lists, spreadsheets, videos) into a "tube" that can then be accessed by all those who have been invited to share it. Invitees can also upload content to the tube, making project collaboration easier. The latest versions of content in the tube sync up when the user is online. Click on the Download link to see a 30-second demo. - chericem1 external image chericem1-sm.jpg

Websites as Graphs - Lets you visualize the content of a website (in terms of images, tables, text, etc.) graphically. Useful for evaluating websites in terms of content and design issues. - chericem1 external image chericem1-sm.jpg

Wikispaces - Allows you to set up collaborative work spaces where multiple people can collaborate. Allows uploading of documents, files, images, and multimedia in addition to basic text, and includes discussion boards for every page, editing histories, revert options, RSS subscriptions, and the ability to review recent changes. Very useful for initiating, implementing, and sustaining change efforts. - chericem1 external image chericem1-sm.jpg

Yugma - Free Web 2.0 videoconferencing software. (Read more about Tim Lauer's experiences with it here: An outstanding tool for collaborating to produce change. - chericem1 external image chericem1-sm.jpg