Archive | RTC 3 #16 RSS feed for this section

Carolyn Stuart at ULEARN

11 Nov

img_4343

Leading change in school is summed up by unleashing innovation but not upsetting people.

These are key parts to this:

Authentic relationships + Inquiry-based practice + Shared vision & values + Future focussed expectations + Trust in people and process + Collective responsibility for agreed norms = Freedom to Innovate

There’s an old adage, “People are down on what they’re not up on.” In the absence of information, people tend to be negative. Communication frequently becomes an afterthought when it should be at the core of any school improvement strategy. If you’ve connected stakeholders to the larger vision through meetings, communications, and input, they will believe it’s worth it. Remember to involve all stakeholders—educators at all levels, students, parents, business and community leaders, media, unions, partners, and others. Ask, “What do we need people to know, feel, and do?” Personalize messaging to each group to ensure relevance and understanding. Make your communications about issues and successes very concrete. Abstract messages get lost in the shuffle. And, carefully consider the timing and sequencing of your communications.

This clip got me thinking around this:

Building the plane while flying clip

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L2zqTYgcpfg

“At the heart of innovation is a paradox.” Linda Hill

https://www.ted.com/talks/linda_hill_how_to_manage_for_collective_creativity?language=en

Advertisements

Planning

8 Nov

download

How do you know if you are driving the right way when you are traveling somewhere new? You use the road signs and a map (although nowadays it might be SIRI ). In the world of education, your objectives for your students act as road signs to your destination. Your plan is the map. Making a plan does not suggest a lack of creativity in your curriculum but rather, gives creativity a framework in which to flourish.

We can’t all be blessed with “epic” workdays all the time. Sometimes, life is just mundane and tedious. Teachers with a sense of purpose that are able to see the big picture can ride above the hard and boring days because their eye is on something further down the road. However by planning and making outcomes clear to our students we can clarify things for students and ourselves.

Digital Natives

30 Oct

download

“Our students, who are empowered in so many ways outside their schools today, have no meaningful voice at all in their own education. Their parents’ voices, which up until now have been their proxies, are no longer any more closely aligned with students’ real education needs than their teachers’ voices are. In the 21st century, this lack of any voice on the part of the customer will soon be unacceptable. As we educators stick our heads up and get the lay of the 21st century land, we would be wise to remember this: If we don’t stop and listen to the kids we serve, value their opinions, and make major changes on the basis of the valid suggestions they offer, we will be left in the 21st century with school buildings to administer – but with students who are physically or mentally somewhere else.” (Marc Perensky, ASCD, 2006)

Teenagers!!!!

18 Oct

Loud-Learning-300dpi

I remember being a teenager. It was a while ago now, but the maelstrom of growing up is still very immediate. In fact, I don’t think it really stops. It’s a myth that you emerge from your teens as a fully formed mature adult. I’m still learning, changing, developing every day, connecting new experiences and ideas with old ones to update and develop my own personal map of the world – and I stopped being a teenager in 1989. Take my last metaphor, for example – I robbed it from a TED talk I watched yesterday by John Green on Paper Towns and Why Learning Is Awesome, in which he likens learning to a cartographic enterprise. I liked it and I’ve already woven it into my own way of thinking about education

Larry Rosenstock at ULearn

8 Oct

img_4343

How can we reorganize timetables and learning structures to better utilize teacher strengths; teachers moving to where the kids are and vice-versa in school environments where we don’t have ‘Innovative Learning Spaces’, but single-cell classrooms?

He cited the influence of John Dewey and the work of Paulo Freire. I also like that he noted that nothing they are doing at High Tech High is new, it might be unusual, it isn’t new. I include the link below regarding changing the subject video

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a036N5N5Hlk

Rosenstock noted that he visited 38 schools when researching schools, and talked of the mosaic of schools and started talking about the “American High School is still missing” suggesting a hole in the educational landscape that needed filling.
Other concepts I noted:

  • Project Phases: observation, reflection, documentation, presentation
  • STEAM instead of STEM because art and design are central to all aspects of STEM. Rosenstock’s Integrations: integration between the mind, heart and hand; integration of social class (accepted by lottery and never segregated in any way); integration of head and hand (need to use both well, not just one); integration of secondary and post-secondary (geared towards college acceptance) integration of school and community
  • Focus on the experience
  • Huge focus on production and not consumption; students can only play games that they created
  • Have students behave like or be like a professional since a huge part of adolescence is trying on new roles and identities
  • Rigor: Not only increased complexity of content, but “I would argue that rigor is being in the company of a passionate adult who is rigorously pursuing inquiry in the area of their subject matter and is inviting students along as peers in that adult discourse.” 
  • How do you know you are a good teacher? “The sophistication of your kids’ work. If your kids are producing work that’s worth doing and that has a lasting value and learning that’s worth learning, you’re a good teacher.”
  • Judge teachers by quality of their students’ work through public exhibitions
  • Use and bring in teachers’ interests; teachers’ excitement is a huge part of engagement
  • “Walls permeable” with the outside world through internship and community service
  • Take methodology of tech like group perform, team-taught, experiential, applied, expeditionary, and producing; connecting pedagogy of tech (not content) with academic content
  • Design of the school: Lots of glass (incubator or startup), so that student work can be showcased (curation), and allow students to see what is going on in other classes

Environment matters. Interestingly he then followed this up with a project where the learners actually published a book. High Tech High turns students into artists, inventors and authors.

Knowledge is socially constructed. This is a statement that appears to be at the heart of what Rosenstock and High Tech High does. Learning doesn’t happen in a vacuum. As he kept flicking through projects, there was a real sense of authentic learning. Students solving real problems, tacking very real issues and producing very real products and actions. He made a comment to me in a group at coffee that I wanted to highlight here.“End the autonomous isolation of teachers.”

For interest this clip puts in place where we are and where our students might be.

The Kids table.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aeFr-BqEaBM

ULearn16

8 Oct

img_4343

Today I am sitting catching my breath after ULearn16. A truly outstanding experience. This blog will reflect some of the ideas and developments in education in the next few weeks. Here though is my favourite memory.

 

.

Pathways

6 Oct

download

This seems to be the new buzzword in the media these days. But whether or not the choice is good or bad, I am still very much in favour of people having a choice!

As educators, we at times are concerned about our students, faculty and staff not staying the course and making choices that are neither scripted nor a part of the “this is what we have always done” philosophy. But when these same entities (students, faculty & staff) are given the opportunity to create new ideas and when they are provided with the ownership to implement these ideas, our students, faculty and staff often become the beneficiaries of these “good choices.”

For example, when students are offered the chance to choose one of three essay questions to complete, the choice of a book to read or the choice of a research paper topic, we know they will be more fully engaged. I understand many educators feel the need to control the conversations and the intended outcomes, but it really doesn’t take much more effort to offer our students a choice of which of the 25 of the 40 math questions they choose to work/answer.

As a school leader I am a firm believer in offering their staff the choice/opportunity of choosing new methods, like using 365, Slides, kahoot, etc., as a more efficient way to share information with others?

Leaders should be encouraging their teachers to choose a different way to deliver their content either by truly integrating technology or by “flipping” the instruction

Differentiation

17 Sep

differentiation-1024x646

As we think as a school about acceleration, tracking students with various abilities and needs of students in your lessons mean that we need to tailor how we teach each one.  It doesn’t mean that differentiation needs to add to workload or contribute to an over-complicated lesson.  Differentiation should also be for the students we are providing it for, not for a tick box ERO review or Faculty Review inspection.

Differentiation need not be observable

Differentiation is for your students.  It shouldn’t be about ticking off boxes. Differentiation is subtle, personal and ingrained in what we do.  It isn’t a short term fix but a longer process.

Differentiation is key to good teaching

It’s the conversations we have, the bespoke feedback we give, the way we differ questions between groups of students.  Differentiation is a response to what is going on in class. Key word is response not a reaction. It should be thoughtful by the teacher.

Differentiation is not about making tasks easier but clarifying thinking

Show students what they should be aiming for and help scaffold students up towards that outcome.

Note I still have a great deal of thinking to do on this.

Great Leaders and Parents

8 Sep

photo 5

It is Fathers Day’s and I am reflecting on how my has changed in the last 8 years as a Dad. The other week I posted a photo of my daughter completing her first Weetbix Triathlon. She suggested I post the above of me finished my first and only (so far) half iron-man.

I have been contemplating a leadership metaphor used by Simon Sinek on a Ted Talk.

The quote that sticks out to me is “great leaders are like parents wanting to give their children (employees) opportunities to try and fail in safe ways and to discipline when necessary”.

I’m struck by the use of the term “discipline” in the metaphor when applied to leadership in a school.

Discipline is commonly defined as getting someone to follow the rules and there is some implication of punishment if you don’t.

Perhaps if people don’t follow the team decision that provides for consistency then discipline is applied – usually a one on one conversation between leader and in this case teacher. But is it then about natural consequences of not following the decision.

 

 

Dealing with being SLT

20 Aug

49faca40cb7a0b1de76bcc88ba06a585

This week I have been reading an excellent book by James Hilton dealing with stress and leading schools. I have learnt that sometimes our greatest enemy or barrier to success is ourselves. Past experiences, fear, doubt, or even replaying negative words of others that have been spoken to us can sabotage ideas, goals, and dreams. Here are some of my reflections this week from this book:

We all feel like giving up sometimes.
My own learning-acknowledge these feelings, embrace them, and then do the opposite. This is easier said than done, but each of us has reached major and minor milestones by simply not giving up.

Think about what has made a difference in your life.
Lesson-rely on past actions that led to successes in your life and celebrate what you’ve accomplished. Think about the process and simply apply the lessons learned.

Focus on your achievements, not your faults.
My own learning – we are imperfect humans with a number of faults. Okay, we get it, now move on. Focusing on our blessings of family, friends, a reasonable portion of good health, teammates, and opportunities encourages us to persevere.

Don’t say ‘I’ll do it later.’
My own learning – we are not guaranteed time so whatever your dreams are, write them down, establish a plan, and DO SOMETHING. Better yet, just do something and develop the plan as you go. Excuses are self-destructive and waste time. Replace the, “yeah, buts” with “yes, and.”

I encourage you to read this. It is a must read.

Mytwosentences

Thoughts and Observations from Edward Roads

Danielle Anne Lynch

Music, Theology, Religion, Education

Learn To Love Food

Food Fun For Feeding Therapy and Picky Eaters

Enseñar a pensar

Metodologías de innovación educativa

youreffectiveleadership

This WordPress.com site is the cat’s pajamas

NotesFromNina

Meaningful learning and effective teaching with a Finnish twist

where the mountain meets the surf, anything is possible

karen spencer

"Washing one's hands of the conflict between the powerful and the powerless means to side with the powerful, not to be neutral...Education is a political act." — Paulo Freire

Education in the Age of Globalization

where the mountain meets the surf, anything is possible

Teaching & E-Learning

Learning in Today's World

A View from the Middle

where the mountain meets the surf, anything is possible

Powerful Learning: It's a Digital Thing

where the mountain meets the surf, anything is possible

Search Msdn

where the mountain meets the surf, anything is possible

where the mountain meets the surf, anything is possible

Artichoke

where the mountain meets the surf, anything is possible

Mike's Blog

where the mountain meets the surf, anything is possible

Back2skool

Technology lessons from the classroom...

Welcome to the Frontpage

where the mountain meets the surf, anything is possible

Mark's Learning Log

Director of Learning Inquiries Pty Ltd (an experienced educator from Principal to Coach)

Mal Lee

where the mountain meets the surf, anything is possible