Sunday, February 23, 2014

Culture - Delving beyond the tip of the iceberg via #GlobalClassroom

Last night I participated in my first Global Classroom chat session, as I think culture plays a major role in the vision and values of New Zealand's unique identity.

My involvement in this chat session helped to clear some ideas about culture as well as reaffirmed my view on the importance of beliefs and values of a group of people.  I am convinced that if we treat others with dignity regarding different cultures, positive relationships will be build on trust.  Positive communication is the key.

Thanks to Sonya, who informed me about this chat, I had the privilege of learning more about this valuable topic from all the participants.

~ "No culture can live, if it attempts to be exclusive" - Mahatma Ghandi ~

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Professional Learning Planning

I am privilege to be co-organiser of the Connected Rotorua Teachers and the yearly Educamp Rotorua. Therefore Annemarie and I spent our Waitangi day, planning this two professional learning opportunities for teachers and we are looking forward to collaborate with teachers who are interested in learning with Digital Technologies on a regular basis.


The Connected Rotorua Presentation is a work in progress of topics to be discussed :

Educamp Rotorua Smackdown:

Thank you to everyone attending Educamp Rotorua and for all the contributions to the Smackdown.  I thoroughly enjoyed learning alongside everyone and am grateful for new connections made.

~ "We  are not 'just' teachers, we are the managers of the world's greatest resource: Children!" -                                                               Robert Johan Meehan ~

Saturday, February 8, 2014

First Week Reflection

The new school term started on an optimistic note, and with a positive feel around school.  It seems as if this year is going to be remembered as an exciting one.

This first week had many new happenings for me.  I was not in class full time, like I use to be.  Instead I was working with great learners as part of my Reading Recovery training. I have already been learning a lot from the first two assessment meetings this week.

Then back to class it was, for some learning sessions with my lovely New Entrant/Year 1 learners.  

One 'challenge' I faced with going into class halfway during the day though, was to quickly settle my learners and myself.  Everyone wanted to talk to me as soon as I walked through the door.  I knew I couldn't expect my lively learners to be just 'ready' for the next learning session.  

So what did we do?  

We started off with having a short sharing time about how our day was going.  This helped everyone to settle down and everyone felt valued. It also gave me the opportunity to learn about my new learners and I was delighted to see the happy and excited faces!

Throughout the week we had also established our Learning Buddy system, which already is working a treat.

I am looking forward to all the learning opportunities with my class.

~ "The wonder of teaching is watching caterpillars become butterflies" - Unknown ~

Saturday, February 1, 2014

A productive start

We kicked our Term off with two very meaningful and productive PD days which [this year] I thoroughly enjoyed!

PD #1: iPad in Education
This was a day to be in touch with learning.  We were reminded that all students in school is 21st Century kids.  Therefore, how will the iPad (21st Century device) transform learning for 21st Century learners?

Apps for the day were: Explain Everything, Puppet Pals, Book Creator, Brushes and Pic Collage.  We also explored  the ability of Explain Everything to use as rewindable learning.

We examined learning experiences within a digital content looking at the SAMR model.

The focus was on fun and we had wonderful and meaningful conversations.  This day definitely laid the foundation to the start of a wonderful journey for us, utilising our iPads in Education. 

Personal learning after session: SAMR model explained for teachers via Educational Technology & Mobile Learning.

PD #2:  SOLO - Our school framework

We worked collaboratively to create our school based concept curriculum with SOLO Taxonomy.  The excitement, laughter, creative thinking and teamwork among us were amazing. Everyone shared ideas and contributed to discussions.  The end result was a framework to be proud of.

Exciting times ahead now, moving towards Extended Abstract!

Personal learning after session:  Blog post by Craig Perry (geoperry) 

~ Education is not the filling of a pail but the lighting of a fire - William Butler Yeats ~