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Andrew Churches's discussion posts

  • Andrew Churches 11 Nov 2016 12:15pm () in Enabling e-learning forum: Look how far we've come | NAPP Kōrero 14 2016

    Hi Dirk,

    Nice and succinct. I like the point about developing the leadership potential in otehrs, this si a large paert of effective leadership.


    Kia Kaha


  • Andrew Churches 14 Oct 2016 8:03am () in Enabling e-learning forum: Look how far we've come | NAPP Kōrero 14 2016

    As a result of engaging in NAPP/EEL conversations online, I can now apply leadership thinking and strategies that are changing my teaching practice and my interactions with staff, parents and the wider community.

    The insights and experiences that I have gained from teh NAPP program are changing the way I work and lead. My awareness is now much broader and I am able to take a number of different perspectives and "lens" into situations. This allows for better decision making.

    It has been great to work with a like minded group of peers and to also be able to throw in the challenging conversations that push boundaries and challenge not only my perceptions and beliefs but also push others to comment and consider.

    Kia Kaha

  • Andrew Churches 20 Jun 2016 9:23am () in FORUM: What does innovation look like in your school? | An Enabling e-Learning event

    While I like simplification, I think this is probably going a little to simple.

    The best model is one many of us will have encountered - Roger's diffusion of innovation model. It plots the different stages of adoption, looks at total level of uptake and indicates that you will need 4 cycles of adoption (on average) to bring on board innovation. How many of our initiatives are planned around 4-5 cycles of training and adoption.


    Rogers diffusion of innovations

    The diffusion of change matches loosely the changes we would expect in uptake of innovation. Roger’s identified 5 different types of individual adopters, each of whom have different characteristic but are representative of the work force in most organisations.

    Innovators – also known as mavericks. These are the risk takers who will experiment with change to better there teaching. They are self motivated. They are approximately 2.5% of the teaching staff

    Early adopters – these people watch the mavericks and are quick to adopt  strategies and approaches that they have seen work. Again these staff are self motivated. These are the opinion leaders. They spread the positive or negative opinion of the innovation. In many ways this is the critical group to bring onboard as they have the greatest degree of influence. This is approximately 13.5% of the staff

    Early Majority – This group will adopt new innovation once it has been seen to work. They are about 34% of the staff. Often they will need some encouragement to adopt innovation.

    Late Majority – this group also represents about 34% of the staff. They are often skeptical of the change, and will reluctantly come onboard after the majority of the staff adopt the changes.

    Laggards – this final group representing about 16% of change are change adverse. If not compelled to change, this group will prefer to stick to traditional approaches. Adoption for this group is often tokenistic or compliance based and given an opportunity they will revert or find reasons not to adopt the innovation.

    img alt="Source: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/1/11/Diffusion_of_ideas.svg/2000px-Diffusion_of_ideas.svg.png" height="750" src="https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/1/11/Diffusion_of_ideas.svg/2000px-Diffusion_of_ideas.svg.png" style="width: 1000px; height: 750px; " width="1000">

  • Andrew Churches 20 Jun 2016 8:27am () in Why are innovator’s mind-sets and in-depth collaboration and cooperation crucial in resourcing ILEs? | NAPP Kōrero 6 2016

    Kia ora Jim.

    There are lots of models of how to lead change, but from my experience none will work unless teachers, students and the community want to change.

    You can present the most compelling arguments, but if your community does not have the will or interest to change these are futile.

    I think back to our earlier discussions on BoT and community engagement/voice. To lead change rather than just herald the need for change we must bring the community. We need to understand their wants and needs, support them by sharing our vision and the rationale behind it and clarifying the outcomes as benefits for their children.

    One of the models for change states that you need five factors to manage effective change in an educational environment:

    • Shared vision and clear, definable goals
    • Suitable resources
    • Appropriate skills
    • An action plan
    • Incentives

    For me the two most critical aspects of the five are Shared vision and clear definable goals and Incentives. We need to communicate these goals and vision well and convincingly, but critically we must have incentives that make our staff, students and community want to change. One would hope that the incentives would be intrinsic - change for the good of my students, for the benefit of my whanua, community etc. But sometimes the incentive is extrinsic change because I am paid more, have more free time, the system and processes make life easier.

    For change to work there needs to be something else to, a CHAMPION. This is sometimes the principal, but the good principal recognises talent, ability and ambition in their staff and channels  and this


  • Andrew Churches 15 Jun 2016 3:08pm () in Why are innovator’s mind-sets and in-depth collaboration and cooperation crucial in resourcing ILEs? | NAPP Kōrero 6 2016

    For a long while schools have had a focus on Modern Learning Environment or MLE's. There was an expectation by some, that if you changed the environment the students learnt in you would change their learning. While the change to an MLE can be a catalyst for broader and wider change, more is needed to make the change sustainable and consistent.

    In 2015 the OECD's CERI, the Center for Educational Research and Innovation, produced a number of excellent books on ILE - innovative Learning Environments.:

    Innovative Learning Environments http://www.oecd-ilibrary.org/education/innovative-learning-environments_9789264203488-en

    Schooling Redesigned, towards innovative Learning Systems  - http://www.keepeek.com/Digital-Asset-Management/oecd/education/schooling-redesigned_9789264245914-en

    In Innovative Learning Environments, the reports identifies four major areas or aspects that contribute to the development, implementation and maintenance of an ILE.

    An ILE includes the core elements of the   learners, educators, content and resources. Additionally the impact of pedagogy and organisation are critical and in turn impact on each of the four core elements.   is fundamental to innovating any learning environment

    • Learners these are both physically present at the lesson or virtually present, learning may be synchronous or asynchronous. Interestingly the ILE report mentions that parents may become learners
    • Educators These are not necessarily just teachers but include a broader selection of the community and could be area experts, other adults and the students peers.
    • Content could include innovate ways of incorporating 21st C pedagogies such as
      • Social learning
      • Inter disciplinary approaches
      • Emphasis on specific knowledge domains like language, sustainability

      This matches nicely with the Approaches to teaching and Learning and learner profile of the IB and the key competencies of the NZCF

    • Resources which focuses on the use of digital resources as well as innovation in facilities and definition and use of learning spaces.

    Pedagogy and Organisation are also factors that influence all four of the core areas, Learners, Educators, Content and Resources.   These could include:


    • Educator groupings – team teaching to expand pedagogical possibilities, as PL, to target specific learners.
    • Learner Groupings - varying the size of the group and the profiles of the groups, mixed age groups, smaller groups within large groups
    • Rescheduling learning time – flexibility in timetabling, personalizing timetables, including distant learning elements, educational ritual and distant education
    • Pedagogy and assessment – inquiry based learning, technology rich opportunities, strong formative feedback and remixing pedagogies.

    Innovative Learning Principles


    The report developed seven Innovative Learning Environment principles

    The principles state that in order to be most effective, learning environments should:

    • Make learning and engagement central
    • Ensure that learning is social and often collaborative
    • Be highly attuned to learner motivations and emotions
    • Be acutely sensitive to individual differences
    • Be demanding for each learner but without excessive overload
    • Use assessment consistently with learning aims, with a strong emphasis on formative feedback
    • Promote horizontal connectedness across the activities and subjects, in and out of school

    Implementing these changes requires not only funding and resources but a well considered and thought out action plan, clearly articulated and shared goals and vision, incentives for the staff to change and often a change in the skill set that the teachers have. Innovative learning environments are exciting and present opportunities to enhance the learning outcomes for our students.