Monday, June 27, 2016

Changes in Practice (Week 32)

Applied Practice in Context (APC) - Changes in Practice

Activity 8: 'Changes in my practice'

It is fair to say that I am someone who gets bored easily, but this MindLab journey stimulated my senses and I feel invigorated for new challenges ahead. It has also made me think about engaging in future study as to further grow and challenge myself personally as well as professionally.

Osterman & Kottkamp (1993) has contrasted traditional approach of professional development by outside experts delivering workshops for schools versus reflective practice model. They suggest that traditional approach results in knowledge acquisition while reflective practice can lead to change in behaviors via self-awareness.

As reflective practice can assist with understanding and evaluating of practice, I have been doing so with reflections on my practice, PL & D and presentations on this blog (and by tagging posts since 2013, with the relevant Teacher Criteria). This has not only helped me to inform and improve my practice, but also enable me to adapt to change. 

Digital and Collaborative Learning in Context was very hands-on and gave me the opportunity to apply technology into lessons straight away. I have always enjoyed giving my students (5 year old's) opportunities to make connections to prior learning and provided opportunities to apply new learning in different contexts. This feedback (below) from Shannon (after this blog post) meant a lot to me and confirmed the opportunities I am providing my students with. The Key Competencies, NZC Principles and PTC's 1 - 12 have all played a crucial part.

Leadership in Digital and Collaborative Learning
PTC 2 (Demonstrate commitment to promoting the well-being of ākonga)
PTC 4 (Demonstrate commitment to ongoing professional learning and development of professional personal practice)
PTC 5 (Show leadership that contributes to effective teaching and learning)
This area was the first to play a part in key changes in my practice. 
I had an opportunity to touch on some research into 'Building partnerships by sharing learning on student individual blogs and why this is important to us, to our community and to our students. This left me wondering how I could develop this within our school. I also had the opportunity to reflect on all the forms of leadership I have had experienced throughout my teaching career. It became clear [through studying the leadership styles] which leader I aspire to be, whilst others had shown me what I need to avoid to enable me to be part of a collaborative, motivated and engaged team that focuses on change and growth mindset. Upon further reflection, I realised that I need to remember that while I maintain high expectations for change and growth in our team’s professional practice, my excitement is definitely not the case for all teachers.

During Research and Community Informed Practice the opportunity arose to do [some] extended research around a topic that is close to heart and to plan my Teaching as Inquiry Project plan around it.
PTC 1 (Establish and maintain effective professional relationships focused on the learning and well-being of all ākonga)
PTC 5 (Show leadership that contributes to effective teaching and learning)
This is the second area that is playing a part in key changes in my practice. Through readings it became evident that there is a difference between parent involvement and parent engagement. I am in the process of making our community aware that digital technologies allow students to share their learning in a variety of visible, interactive and engaging ways. This will help our community to be more involved with what is going on, build effective partnerships and engage them in their children's learning.

Reflective blog posts in Applied Practice in Context not only allowed me to identify, critically examine and evaluate my teaching practice, but also gave me an insight into the thinking and perceptions of other professionals. I enjoyed reading and commenting on posts. This extended my thinking on a variety of 'issues' in our profession. 

Future Professional Development:
Master's Degree: I have always been interested in Educational Leadership and (now being part of the Senior Management team), believe that by studying for my masters it will allow me to pursue this topic further and develop my knowledge and skills.
GAFE Summit: I would like to attend one of these events to focus further on deploying, integrating, and using Google Apps for Education and other Google tools to promote student learning.

Osterman, K. & Kottkamp, R.(1993). Reflective Practice for Educators.California. Cornwin Press, Inc. Retrieved on 7th May, 2015 from

Ministry of Education (nd). Practising teacher Criteria and e-learning . Retrieved from

~ "Progress is impossible without change, and those who cannot change their minds cannot change anything." - George Bernard Shaw ~


  1. Hi Marnel, thank you so much for sharing your The Mind Lab by Unitec journey. It is great to hear how you have been challenged and have shifted your classroom practice and affirmed your leadership style. It is also great how you are able to show where and how close this postgraduate course aligns and works towards your PTCs. I really enjoyed working with you during this course and found that even though we are from two completely different teaching and learning environments we could work together collaboratively and with some great learning in tow - which is a huge benefit of this digital and collaborative course

    1. Hi Hancine, thank you for your lovely feedback. I appreciate that I have had the opportunity to share this journey with you and am extremely grateful that I had the chance of working collaboratively with you. It was cool to listen to your perception on different aspects as we are (as you've mentioned) form completely different teaching and learning environments. I enjoyed working with you!

  2. Kia Ora Marnel,

    Like you this has been an interesting but reflective journey which has impacted my practice also. The ability to use the online tools immediately with students and with colleagues has been motivating and given purpose at times. I too enjoy the collaboration and it has been less overwhelming being able to share this journey with others.