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Whaea Merenia's discussion posts

  • Whaea Merenia 18 Jul 2016 5:38pm () in Forum: How do schools ready themselves for modern learning pedagogies?

    This comment that Nathaniel makes is relevant, 'There is so much going on in this area that it can sometimes seem overwhelming. However, as with everything we do in schools, we need to make sure that the move to MLPs is for the right reason and aligns with the vision, beliefs and values of the school.' Our school has not made the move to go to ILE's but we are aware of it. We have bought furniture that is different from the traditional desks and chairs and I suppose it is in the right direction towards the next part, and that next part is what? Derek W says, '...but these things alone will not change the effectiveness of our educational provision unless they are matched to our shared beliefs and values. It is there that we need to start – and continue to reflect and refine as we seek to develop an educational approach that is relevant to the lives of our modern learners and their future.” Derek Wenmouth. We've started the digital/devices journey however it is early days but I think that the pedagogy of ILE's, elearning, collaboration, student agency are part and parcel of this journey and all the pieces of the jigsaw have to be progressing if we are to meet the learning needs of our children. Our school is moving slowly and carefully towards meeting the needs of our children, our teachers and our community and it's important for my school that this is paramount as we reimagine what learning looks like. I think these 3 key ideas are important and crucial to successful learning. 

    • quality teaching impacts on student achievement
    • stay abreast to keep changing
    • deeper understanding

    Everything that I have been reading always challenges and supports my thinking and I enjoy all the comments and efforts that people make.


  • Whaea Merenia 18 Jul 2016 10:37am () in FORUM: New technologies and collaborative processes | An Enabling e-Learning event

    Since I've been reading a few comments, gone onto links, watched videos from various people there have been some key words that are seen and used and referred to commonly: collaboration, learner agency, reimagine, learner orientation, ubiquitous, engagement, interactive, pedagogy, innovation, creativity, design thinking, synergy - words that certainly promote reflection on how important it is to make sure that our learners needs are being met and our pedagogy is reflective of this - student orientated practice - we restructure ourselves to best meet the needs of our learners. I read what Tessa Gray had to write and listened to a Podcast from Ewan McIntosh, read interesting things from Tim Gander and it made me realise a number of things: The pedagogy behind e learning, collaboration, and communities is vital. Collaboration with e learning are a strong partnership because they lead to student agency, dispel the notion that learning is contained in four walls, and that learning stops after 3pm.  When I listened to Ewan McIntosh founder of 'No Tosh Ltd'  he speaks about how to develop collaboration. He says that collaboration needs to occur between a range of people from a range of different backgrounds. Are our schools the best places for this? We're decile 2 - many, not all, of our children experience the same home lives, the same experiences, the same backgrounds so maybe a way to combat this is to overload them with content, this would hook them in to inquire and then this would also mean that children would have to share within a group, so that when they come together it's genuine synergy and collaboration because person A has to share with person B who knows something different from B and so on. If elearning is used effectively as Tim Gander is doing with google+ than he is meeting the social and academic needs of his learners - by meeting the needs of a variety of learners and it's interactive. Tim Gander uses this quote to support the importance of positive interactions online. McLoughlin & Lee write that by using online communities "rich possibilities for students to create and share ideas, connect, and participate in broader learning communities that are not confined to the spaces in which formal teaching and learning activities take place." (2008 p.15)

    I've enjoyed reading and listening and comparing it to how I think and how I have to have a shift in my own practice, my own pedagogy and it's exciting. Our school is beginning this journey especially the shift in thinking in many of our teachers who have the desire but unsure about how to have a more blended class, more student agency, who have to reimagine their roles as teachers.

  • Whaea Merenia 16 Jul 2016 4:17pm () in Equity devices in BYOD schools

    In the Education.govt.nz it says this..

    By the end of 2016, all schools will have access to the technology available to provide high quality, high capacity, ultrafast internet access for teaching and learning. Connected classrooms offer today’s students and teachers easier, affordable, and faster access to information, teaching and learning resources, peers, experts and the wider community.

     Digital technologies have a pivotal role to play. They are a major enabler of the forces reshaping how our society and economy function. The smart use of digital technologies has enormous potential to help us recast the key principles, relationships, partnerships, and components integral to successful learning environments.

    I cut and paste this statement because it gives clear rationale behind the importance of how technology will continue to progress in the 21st century and we have to be prepared to go through transformational change within ourselves no matter how uncomfortable it is. 

    Our school is currently investing in devices for our children. We use Chrome books, ipads and PCs, however the PCs are becoming increasingly redundant due to how quickly they decide to 'break' down. Junior teachers especially  like the ipads and many of our Y4 - Y6 children are working on chrome books. We haven't yet looked at BYOD but as a Leadership team we have had a few discussions about it's benefits vs no benefits - for want of a better word. Our school has also largely been working on pedagogy shifts in relation to devices in the classroom - so one step at a time. I think it's only a matter of time before we venture down this track and after reading what Derek Wenmouth says and the links he shared, there is a place for BYOD in our school to meet learner needs and develop a pedagogy of learning for our learners and teachers. As a teacher in the US says 'Tiziana Saponaro', 'when her own shift in pedagogy transformed from direct instructional method into project and inquiry based learning approach, then helps students learn by doing gives them ownership of the education'.  If we are to meet the diverse needs of all our children it must become our responsibility to explore this route. As Lisa Nielsen writes in her '7 Myths about BYOD' '...a shift in a BYOD school is for teachers and students to come together to discuss and discover the limitless possibilities that a tech-rich environment provides and then work together to think about how best to pursue learning goals'. 

  • Whaea Merenia 16 Jul 2016 3:05pm () in Why are innovator’s mind-sets and in-depth collaboration and cooperation crucial in resourcing ILEs? | NAPP Kōrero 6 2016

    Kia Ora Koutou. I went online to have a look around, because there are some serous discussions happening about ILEs and it has promoted some reflection for me too. I'm currently in a traditional school, on the journey of pedagogical change in relation to devices as a learning tool, we have been on a day course where a new school was an ILE in every sense of the word, with collaboration being a huge factor with children, leaders of learners and the community. It was very fascinating and quite exhausting - a new and innovative way of thinking and where the children's learning is paramount. In the NZC Pg 8 'Vision' what we want for our young people....'who will seize the opportunities offered by new knowledge and technologies to secure a sustainable social, cultural, economic, and environmental future for our country'

    Why are innovators mindsets and in depth collaboration and co-operation crucial in resourcing ILEs?

    It's a big job being an innovator and when we are thinking about ILEs we shouldn't be thinking about this lightly. When people and emotions are involved than an innovator has to have a decent EQ because I think that teachers in these classes make the difference. The right personalities, with the right mindset, who are open to transformational change.  Their pedagogy will drive this change. So who is that innovator? The Principal, no doubt, however it is the leaders of learners - our teachers, our APs and DPs who are also the drivers of change.  The resourcing is huge as you are working in a traditional school, single cell rooms, not the new schools, so the space needs to change, the furniture needs to change. Financially a school has to be transparent because we are striving to address student achievement - a basis to improve pedagogy, teaching and learning - and if we want to empower teachers and learners, by providing a structure and a framework than financial resourcing is important.  Innovative leaders need to be leading collaboration and co-operation to travel from "compliance and engagement to empowerment". A colleague made a comment to me the other day about how not all ILEs meet the needs of every child and we have to keep this in mind, we shouldn't be making the child fit us but us meeting their learning needs.