How Did and How Does Steve Jobs Impact Us, Our Students, and Our Institution?


Steve Jobs changed my life with his inventions and his passion for what he believed in even when he was faced with stiff opposition and failure. What can we learn from his passion and how we embrace the changes in our industry. Below are some videos of various times where Steve was talking about much more then just computers.

Steve introduces the controversial Think Different campaign. English teachers around the world hated it. I think it shows a lot about message and connecting with your customers which in our case are students and parents.

This video is from either a MacTopia or a World Wide Developers Conference about the time he came back to Apple after he was fired. I think it demonstrates both leadership in how not to react and how his focus on customers was as least as important as his focus on the design and technology. What can we learn from this in how we both react to parts of the book and the changes we are facing in our school? He admits a lot about himself.

While many folks have talked about the “Apple Tax” when it comes to the cost of Apple products. The video below shows how Steve approaches it. I remember when I told parents at Culbreth Middle School that I was leaving to teach at Durham Academy. One parent was upset and she said “they get all the good teachers”. I replied that they also understood what it cost to educate a student where as public schools struggled to fund what is needed. We don’t teach junk. A lot has changed since 1999. How do we make sure what and how we teach is still relevant?


The most watched and talked about speech is his commencement speech at Stanford. If you have not watched it, you should as it tells his life in 3 stories.

What are your thoughts? Add a comment.

Consider Me a Crazy One

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I sent this message to all teachers at my school this morning and thought I would share it here as well.

I wanted to thank Durham Academy as an institution along with Sheppy Vann and Ed Costello publicly for sending me and others to hear Steve Jobs speak at past MacWorld conferences. His company has impacted my teaching in ways I could never have imagined when I first used his technology in 1993.

I have always liked this message from one of their ad campaigns and I think it is a worthy view of how we look at our students and school.

“Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The troublemakers. The round pegs in the square holes.

The ones who see things differently. They’re not fond of rules. And they have no respect for the status quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them.

About the only thing you can’t do is ignore them. Because they change things. They invent. They imagine. They heal. They explore. They create. They inspire. They push the human race forward.

Maybe they have to be crazy.

How else can you stare at an empty canvas and see a work of art? Or sit in silence and hear a song that’s never been written? Or gaze at a red planet and see a laboratory on wheels?

We make tools for these kinds of people.

While some see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do.”

The Crazy Ones. Wikipedia. October 6, 2011. [].

The world is emptier today for those of us who push the clouds.

Thanks Steve and Apple employees.