Wednesday, 19 April 2017

Edu Ignite Christchurch

Read all about the latest Eduignite held at Haeata early April. Thanks to Sue McLachlan for this blog- also posted at Sue's My Education Blog

EduIgnite is new thing for me. I read more about it on this site and was excited about attending my first evening. Speakers are given 5 minutes to get through 20 slides and share their ideas. This was the first EduIgnite for #ChchEd this year and was held at Haeata Community Campus. A lovely spread of drinks and nibbles was provided beforehand (thanks to Mark Osborne form Core-Ed and Emerging Leaders) which gave us the opportunity to chat with other educators. I know I made a great contact with someone in that first 30 minutes and I recommend that you turn up early to the next one (follow #EduigniteChch). Andy Kai Fong opened the evening then everyone introduced themselves. Many connections were made, and there were a few laughs as we went around. These are my notes, so my apologies for any mistakes and sometimes disjointed comments. The 5 minutes goes past very quickly and my typing skills are not that fast so I hope I got all the information right. For those that spoke, please feel free to add in the comments below if I missed anything!

Tara O'Neill (@Aratoneill) - A case for play

Play allows for curiosity and for relationships to be built. If students don't play and be curious they get turned off learning. In playbased learning, the child learns through their own effort rather than being directed.
Play is the child's natural way of learning skills and teacher direction needs to be learnt at the right stage.
Motivation = autonomy + a sense of competence
She talked about a student who didn't know purpose of writing. One of the learning scenarios she talked about was playing firemen and the students took notes after a fire callout. A good example of the purpose.
To do this we need to be providing a playbased learning environment plus integrate learning, for example using a student biking and doing skids turned into a maths lesson by using the skids and deciding which is longer and estimating lengths.
One book she mentioned was Free to Learn by Peter Gray and I managed to find this pdf  of it which I will have a read of later.
During the short changeover, someone asked about what was needed to teach this way. You need to see learning in what children are doing and find the learning within it. It is a different way of approaching learning, not standing in front and delivering. When asked about when we should move on from play-based learning, Tara explained that we still all play, with our gardening and our hobbies.

Matt Nicoll (@mattynicoll) - Proof

Matt introduced us to a unit he has been doing at Rolleston College?? based on solving crimes. They have selected times - 2 x 100 min blocks that they opt into, some multi disciplined,  some specialised, and this unit is one on forensic science, the legal system and what justice is. They start with a fake crime scene - staff have
set up a site with video evidence, synopsis and pictures of the crime scene. They used SOLO rubric and did reflective writing. They used Padlet for exploring the learning they wanted. Could they find people to run things? Used SOLO to get down to specifics like fingerprinting. Staff wrote a new crime scene - what next? Crime scene, murder mystery? Used SOLO Assessment rubric. They wanted students to solve a crime using evidence, be collaborative and write about this. Only problem they had was in finding mentors for students.
Matt kindly shared his slide deck on Twitter.

Tom Bijesse - Code club

Code Club Aoteoroa is a nationwide network of after school coding clubs. Volunteers run it - some are developers who know how to write code, not always the best teachers, but they learn from each other.
Can students be volunteers - yes
They learn Scratch, HTML/CSS, Python, and Sense Hat (Raspberry PI). They also use CSUnplugged.
I liked the explanation of the Emotional Learning curve where they start at the top thinking they will be able to make Halo then go to the bottom when they realise they can't make Halo, then rise to the top again when they realise they can make Snake.
Most of their projects are from the UK but they have one in Scratch to teach Matariki which looks great.
Would you recommend it for teachers - yes - yes you can volunteer/ yes you can host one - put venue on the website. They can help recruit. Kids can join as well.
Mondays 4-5.30 New Brighton library
Tues 4-5.30  Upper Riccarton Library
Wed 4-5 Halswell Library
Here is the link to the flyer for the Code Club 4 Teachers courses in term 2 and the link to a Tech Week event - an info session on Code Club 4 Teachers, being held at Haeata or you can email Tom at

Lex Davis (@lexynz) - NCEA in FLEs

NCEA is silo heaven - trapped in one for years. I liked his slide when he had a beanbag in the middle of the room to show the change to modern environments with the title: MLE/FLS/ILE/FLE/LOL.
He reminded us of this quote "The era of qualifications as we know it is over" by Sue Suckling at the Singularity Conference this year.
Seen many schools in the last 6 months:
Templestowe College - doing amazing things in some areas, then they have classes for their assessments separate.
Hobsonville - amazing - big rocks and small rocks to get through
Rototuna - cross curricular modular based learning
How do we want to run at Haeata? NCEA is the spanner in the works. Constrained by qualifications and the more walls we build, the more complex it becomes. Want to push down the walls. Want individuality. How do we manage the admin of NCEA?
V1.0 - tried a careers based module system. 
V1.1 - broke learning and standards into kete so they could pick up and go
V2.0 - portrayed by the harakeke - versatile. Long and short courses. Self-management is an issue - we want them to, they don't want to - they love classes.
External Providers - have lots at our fingertips and we need to create relationships with them.
Communicating this to whanau - they are scared, need to assure them that we are authentic and credible.
Early days, nice to share our journey.

Karyn Gray (@karyngra) - Changes

Karyn started with this quote: "The definition of insanity is doing the same thing and expecting a different result."
We know serious changes are needed in our system. We know there is a culture of assessment learning in schools. Need to change. What is success - in life not in school and grades. To get from one form of success to another is a great leap. Dispositional curriculum - are we modelling that?
Every assessment procedure should match your purpose. Sometimes schools do assessment driven work.
Need to show leadership and have a sense of urgency. If we all stand up and stand together we can change. We join groups and get involved. Twitter is educational - huge amount of contacts and information from Twitter - I agree with Karyn that Twitter is the best PD I could ever ask for. If you are not part of it, you should seriously join. Check out #EdChatNZ, #ChchEd. #eduignitechch and if you are up early #bfc630nz (or if you are like me and can't make 6.30a.m., you can read it later!).
In Korepo (one of Haeata's hapori) a different teacher is blogging every week. We have a responsibility to do this and share our practice. As leadership we need to encourage people to move out of their comfort zone. We need to challenge people on why school should be the same as it was 20 yrs ago.
She left us with this quote (of which I found many slightly different versions and 2 different authors attributed so spent time trying to find the original - hoping this is it!)
Come to the edge.
We might fall.
Come to the edge.
It's too high!
And they came
And he pushed
And they flew.

by Christopher Logue

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