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Patrick Pink's discussion posts

  • Patrick Pink 13 Dec 2013 9:25am () in Child with severe expressive language diffficulties

    People's capacity to connect and communicate never ceases to amaze me.  And the multitude of ways we do so is just as remarkable.  We use our eyes, our hands, our bodies, our voice.  We use actions, gestures, sign language, movement, vocalisations and speech.  We are designed to share our thoughts, wants, wishes, our disppointments, frustrations and struggles.  We question, answer and comment.   We truly have the capacity, the desire to connect.

    This thread reminds me of the many students who I have worked alongside and who did not communicate in the 'typical traditional' way but still communicated their hopes and wants, their likes and dislikes.  As a teacher, I worked closely with my students, their families and the concerned and committed team members to better understand what my students were conveying.  My students used eye gaze and gestures and sign language and facial expressions and movement to let me know what they wanted and what they did not. They asked and answered and commented and shared and as their teacher it was up to me to discover the 'what' and 'how' of their communication.  

    To be understood and to understand is a very powerful interchange.  It is the basis of a trusting relationship where challenges can be introduced and supported so as to provide opportunities to increase the circle of communication partners and share more and more.  

    The following video demonstrates the power of shared communication, of entering the world of the student and simply be present and observe how the student expresses him or herself so as to enhance trust and foster relationship.  


  • Patrick Pink 28 Nov 2013 12:31pm () in Teen Expression

    Other aspects of teen's expressing themselves.

    Sticks and Stones: Fighting cyberbullying from EDtalks on Vimeo and the Sticksnstones website.


    Here is Tavi Gevinson's website Rookiemag.

    This is a great spoken word piece by Joshua Iosefo.

  • Patrick Pink 28 Nov 2013 11:55am () in Teaching and Learning with Joy: Connecting through Massively Multiplayer Thumb-wrestling

    Jane McGonigal shares with an audience massively multiplayer thumb-wrestling and the opportunity to experience 10 positive emotions in 60 seconds while learning a new activity.  I particularly enjoyed the sound of shared laughter and joy from the 1500 member audience.

  • Patrick Pink 22 Nov 2013 12:40pm () in Talking about Those Things that are Really Changing Us

    Jason Ohler: New media, new students - new literacies, new citizens from EDtalks on Vimeo.

    (If interested, transcript can be found clicking onto the link)

    Jason Ohler was one of the keynote speakers at ULearn12 last year.  In one of his talks, one of the things that he shared was the changing face of literacy (the three Rs) to include media literacy.  Under media studies, the New Zealand Curriculum discusses media literacy as ' a framework to access, analyse, evaluate and create in a variety of forms--from print to video to the Internet.'  This parallels Mr. Ohler's idea that literacy has 'always meant consuming and producing the media forms of the day.'  

    With the saturation of information and media that we and our students encounter on a daily basis, becoming media literate is fundamental.  As a teacher, I often question my practice and inquire how can I provide multiple ways for students to learn to critically analyse, interpret, evaluate and create within these changeing times.  I know, for one, I fall back onto the principles of UDL. 


  • Patrick Pink 21 Nov 2013 1:33pm () in Select universal technologies and design for personalisation, a UDL approach

    I always appreciate the voices of young people who share their stories of how they learn through a variety of teaching/learning tools, including technology.  With connection and success, engagement can be fostered and maintained beyond the initial 'shiny' lure of new devices.  Personalisation of universal technologies begins to open up possibilities, choice, and better understanding of what works best for the individual to gather information and express their thoughts and interests.  It can open doors and remove barriers.

    The following two videos are of young people who discuss how technologies have created possibilities and choice for them, both within the classroom and beyond into real life.    

  • Patrick Pink 07 Nov 2013 9:08am () in UDL, access and creativity

    Fantastic!  Thank you so much Catriona for finding and sharing this video.  For me it demonstrates what is possible when we believe in our students' endless capabilities, when we don't give up and continue to try to find what works for the individual.  It also highlights that finding the 'right match' of a tool does not only assist within the walls of the school, but extends beyond to life after school.

  • Patrick Pink 10 Oct 2013 11:19am () in This is why we do it - passion for teaching

    This is why we do it

    Rita Pierson gave a TED talk in April 2013.  For 7 minutes and 48 seconds she shared her wisdom and her love of teaching and learning and the inspiration of working alongside students.  She particularly highlighted the importance of building relationships with her students as a key to well-being and achievement.  

    Ms. Pierson shares:  'Teaching and learning should bring joy.  How powerful would our world be if we had kids who were not afraid to take risks, who were not afraid to think, and who had a champion?  Every child deserves a champion, an adult who will never give up on them, who understands the power of connection, and insists that they become the best that they can possibly be.'

    Truly inspirational

    Transcript can be found on the TED site.

  • Patrick Pink 26 Sep 2013 7:41am () in Knowing my learners (Linda Ojala)

    Knowing our learners....particularly our reserved and introverted learners.

    I find that the more I delve into the area of working alongside our learners who are more reserved and introverted, the more I wonder about our school environments and whether they have the options for learners who may require quiet and reflective places where working by him/herself or with one other person or two others may be better for learning.  Again, UDL comes to mind...and the notion that 'one-size-fits-all' may not work for all.  

    I've finished Susan Cain's book Quiet:  The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking and was moved by the depth of research.  There is a section in the book that looks at our reserved or introverted kids within schools and classrooms.  Here are a few excerpts that rang true with me:

    'We tend to forget that there's nothing sacrosanct about learning in large group classrooms, and that we organise students this way not because it's the best way to learn but because it's cost-efficient, and what else would we do with our children while the grown-ups are at work?  If your child prefers to work autonomously and socialise one-on-one, there's nothing wrong with her; she just happens not to fit the prevailing model.  The purpose of school should be to prepare kids for the rest of their lives, but too often what kids need to be prepared for is surviving the school day itself.'

    Some ideas to help our more reserved kids to practice interaction and 'speaking up'.  Cain suggests:

    'Let him know that it's OK to take his time to gather his thoughts before he speaks, even it if seems as if everyone is jumping into the fray.  At the same time, advise him that contributing earlier in a discussion is a lot easier than waiting until everyone else has talked and letting the tension build as he waits to take his turn.  It he's not sure what to say, or is uncomfortable making assertions in a larger group, help him play to his strengths.  Does he tend to ask thoughtful questions?  Praise the quality, and teach him that good questions are often more useful than proposing answers.  Does he tend to look at things from his own unique point of view?  Teach him how valuable this is and discuss how he might share his outlook with others.'

    Lastly, 'some collaborative work is fine for introverts, even beneficial.  But it should take place in small groups--pairs or threesomes--and be carefully structured so that each child knows her role.'  

    Just some thoughts

  • Patrick Pink 20 Sep 2013 12:30pm () in Knowing my learners (Linda Ojala)

    Know your learner...

    Take away the 1953 outfits and hairstyles and the tinny cinematic soundtrack, the essence has always been the same:  How can I best know my learners and with that information create an environment where they will develop and grow?  Through observation, listening to family/whānau, discovering likes, interests and preferences, providing opportunities for learners to share and teach what they know with others, gathering collective insight, experience and wisdom amongst colleagues and using head, hands and heart. 

    UDL all the way

  • Patrick Pink 20 Sep 2013 12:18pm () in UDL Chat

    Thanks, Roxy, for sharing these ideas and images and songs from the udlchat group.  It is always a blast to see what is going on out in the world of education and share our stories of challenges and successes.  I also appreciate what our Aotearoa Assembly brings to the bimonthly dialogue.  We offer a unique voice where we don't only share our experiences around the basic UDL principles of representation, expression and engagement, but we also demonstrate the spirit of ako and are engaged learners/teachers.