Log in

Resourcing how and why of e-Learning | NAPP Kōrero 6 2015

Kia ora koutou, talofa lava and welcome to this kōrero 6, 2015 on, Resourcing and e-Learning.


Just to set the scene, it is important to have a common understanding of what e-learning is as well as the purpose and potential of e-learning before school leaders commit to resourcing decisions.


E-Learning is defined by Enabling e-Learning as, “learning and teaching that is facilitated by or supported through the appropriate use of information and communication technologies (ICTs). Whatever the technology, however, learning is the vital element. e-Learning is not simply associated with modes of delivery or the functionality of a particular technology, but forms part of a conscious choice of the best and most appropriate ways of promoting effective learning.

If, best practice e-learning enables accessible, relevant, and high-quality learning opportunities that improve student engagement and achievement”, how might resourcing decisions define processes required to ensure e-learning capacities get the best chance to grow – e.g: establishing priorities across all school resourcing, confirming a process for teacher capacities to grow, confirming processes for inclusion of student voice and community voice and involvement?


Smart tools like the e-Learning Planning Framework (available online) can help schools to support self review about how well ICTs and e-learning are currently being used to support learning, as well as next steps to work towards desired goals so that technologies can be used, “....effectively across the curriculum to connect schools and communities and to provide accessible, relevant, and high-quality learning opportunities so that every student is better able to achieve their full potential.”


Image taken from LIVE webinar | Using the e-Learning Planning Framework online tool and analysing your data, 25 March, 2015, Greg Carroll


The key questions for us are:

  • Why do New Zealand Schools need to resource “widely and wisely in growing e-learning capacities”?

  • How do principals lead “resourcing widely and wisely in growing e-learning capacities”?


This kōrero is supported by, WEBINAR: Resourcing e-Learning | NAPP Kōrero 6, Wednesday 10 June, 3.45- 4.45pm. Join us as we discuss the implications of effective e-learning with NAPP participants and invited guests (e-Learning Planning Framework, Connected Learning Advisory). Hosted in Adobe Connect with Tessa GrayREGISTER NOW!


Some resources to kick start this kōrero…


  • Helen Newcombe (View all users posts) 24 May 2015 4:15pm ()

    For me to consider the how and why of elearning, I first need to clarify for myself the WHAT. It is learning that is supported through the use of ICTs. Not only using ICT to present information, but to allow students to engage with their learning. Providing opportunities for collaboration and transforming the learning environment. Shifting the emphasis from teaching to learning can create a more interactive and engaging learning environment for teachers and learners. (Shyamal Majumdar - Emerging Trends in ICT for Education & Training) This results in changing the roles of the teacher from a transmitter of knowledge to a facilitator of learning, and changing the roles of the students from a reproducer of knowledge to a producer of knowledge.

    Elearning is important because it helps to create a learner centered environment. Schools need to ensure all students’ needs are being met and ICT can be used to differentiate learning. It can change the way students and teachers interact and encourage collaboration amongst students. Elearning allows teachers to respond flexibly to the needs of students. “Access, extend, transform and share represent key processes by which students learn and become independent learners and self-starters.” (Majumdar)

    The vision for my school is that it will be an inspiring, innovative learning environment. It will provide wide-ranging learning experiences. Elearning is not specifically mentioned as an aspect of this but it fits within the development of the school to meet this vision. Elearning provides the perfect platform for innovative learning environments and a range of learning experiences.

    As a school we are setting up the network capabilities to maximise eLearning. BYOD is being trialled and practises are being well utilized in some departments. The school has made a commitment to financially provide modern ICT provisions. At the moment departments are developing their own practises within the classroom, looking at how ICT can be used to encourage greater collaboration and engagement with the content. It is essential to ensure teachers have the opportunities to improve their skills and develop their pedagogy, so professional development is critical. While reflecting on this korero I looked closely at the Elearning Planning Framework. I think it would be particularly useful to go through the phases as a school and identify the next steps for us. Elearning is not directly linked to the current school goals, although it forms aspects of the action plans. At the moment the school has other priorities and targets. I would like to see more emphasis placed on an elearning goal in 2016 as there is a large financial commitment made to building our physical capabilities. There needs to be a shift in teaching practises and pedagogies to make the most of this financial commitment. I would like to see my school in the Emerging and Extending phases by the end of 2016. We have a strong, technically capable teaching staff, good physical resources, and by the end of 2015, a school network capable fully embracing elearning.



  • Heidi Moeller (View all users posts) 25 May 2015 10:44am ()

    From reading all your posts, a point that resonates with me is that we are all on this journey together that schools are on different points of the pathway.  Some are racing ahead, some are just stepping out onto the road and some schools are standing in place, consolidating, until they take the next turn or step in their journey. 

    At our school every step along the pathway always comes back to the point - will this enhance student achievement? Does this approach or technology link to our school vision and values? 

    We always have a lot of questions!  We have built a collaborative staff that respects and values each individual of the team.  Each individual is then linked into a PLG outside the school in an area that they are passionate about.  This model helps support staff in growing their e-learning capacities in areas they are passionate about.  They are now more receptive to take on board new initiatives suggested by staff in other areas that benefit all children.  

    At our school, staff complete an action research project every year (Ariki) http://www.arikiproject.ac.nz/.  This project links to attestation and teaching as inquiry.  This has been put in place in our school by the principal, so as a collective we can make decisions as an informed and collaborative team on ‘resourcing widely and wisely in growing e-learning capacities’.   In general most of the projects that staff undertake are in growing e-learning capacities. 

    I enjoyed reading the post by Alison Taylor.  Time, funding and growing people capacity from the principal to all staff members is key to the success of growing e-learning capacities. 

    I am excited in the next step in our school journey, as you all have shared a lot of ideas and talents that could benefit our school journey. 

  • Suzie Brace (View all users posts) 31 May 2015 12:41pm ()

    In reading some of these posts I am a little embarrassed to say that I have no idea what my school’s ICT vision is. We are in our first year of  a BYOD programme and aside from a short consultation with HODs about how BYOD could be used in their departments I am not sure if any other consultation was undergone.

    We have a general criteria for compulsory devices to meet:


    This is probably why we have teachers confused as to what the school’s baseline expectations on ICT use and BYOD integration in lessons is. I am lucky to be in a department with some incredibly capable and forward thinking teachers so our department’s baseline is more than others but this should be consistent across the school. Resourcing the Professional Learning around BYOD use has taken a hit due to the PL needed on the other initiatives being established this year.

    So where should ICT sit in the prioritising of the different areas (curriculum, pastoral, professional learning etc) of schools? Or is it something that should underpin how we operate in all the different areas?

    My school has all the opportunities available to them such as dedicated teachers, engaged students and whanau, Wellington Loop with its sharing capabilities and some teachers who are  passionate about VLN classrooms. We are resourcing “widely and wisely” when it comes to actual hardware and software but the people resourcing seeming thin. We are not shifting the staff’s current practices to support the emerging expectations of our student and community population now and in the future.

  • Janis Powley (View all users posts) 31 May 2015 4:45pm ()

    In decision making at our school we use, for the majority of our decision making, the Golden Circle (Simon Sinek), first seen by me at a PD session at Albany Senior High. There are three layers to the circle, the inner circle is the WHY, the middle circle the HOW and the outer circle the WHAT. Sinek believes that inspired leaders start with the WHY and work out, while most people work the other way and start with the WHAT and work in. Always starting with the inner circle, the WHY, will give those involved in the decision making, followed by those they communicate with, a clear understanding of the purpose, the cause and the belief behind the decision. 

    So... We started with the WHY. Why do we want to incorporate ICTs into education. But we didn't rely on our own thinking - we also asked the students, the parents, the wider school community why they thought we should incorporate ICTs. As a community we believe that the children coming to our school use ICTs as a natural part of their world, they are not add-ons. We also believe that to make  progress in this fast paced digital world where they will be leaving school in a world not yet created, and going for jobs not yet thought of, students need to have easy access to, and know how to use, a number of different media, both hard copy and electronic, both computer based and web based, to solve problems both solitary and in collaboration. 

    With this in mind we looked at HOW we could do this. We began by providing a variety of ICTs for our students to access - we got to a ratio of 1:2, and this taught the students how to collaborate and work together - a good outcome from the use of technology. But we wanted to achieve a ratio of 1:1 in order to allow space for students to work alone on occasion - something they will need to do as well as collaborate. We are now going down the track of BYOLD. I will let you know how this works when fully implemented.

    The WHAT is in the domain of the classroom teacher, who, with the students, decide what they learn, when they learn it and how they learn it with the digital skills that they bring to the classroom and build on.

  • Kaye Gillies (View all users posts) 01 Jun 2015 11:29am ()

    Hi All

    Thank you for you thought,

    I have been thinking about coming back to the purpose and pedagogy of e-learning

    Clearly “ Learning with digital technologies helps equip children and students with the range of skills they need to participate in a modern, future-focused economy. Digital technologies also have the potential to make the current education system more cost effective and accessible” retrieved from http://www.minedu.govt.nz/theMinistry/PublicationsAndResources/StatementOfIntent/SOI2014/StrategicIntentions/CreateAMoreModernLearningEnvironment.aspx

    E-learning has the potential to change the face of education as we know it. While it may have started we are not there yet. I have enjoyed listening to Stephen Heppell’s videos  (Schools of the Future by Stephen Heppell)   and hearing ideas about how future education could look.   (Please note this is education in the broad sense and not just schooling.)

     I watched a video (not on our list) he put together on small schools.  This was very interesting and captured my imagination. His definition of an ideal school size  was 4-150 students. Heppell did not recommend ever going over 300 – because the community feel a school should have is lost and he claimed research showed students can be damaged by this.  (This is interesting in light of the NZ governments desire to create schools of 250 by merging smaller schools.)

    A future focus is concerned with creating communities of learners.  Communities are typically not made up of people the same age. E-Learning enables connections globally.  Small schools do not inhibit connections. Heppell pictures schools as hubs for the community – becoming the heart of communities again and being places where people connect.  Student voice is strongly encouraged and learning is student centred. The internet is linked to unlimited resources making the tailoring of learning tasks a viable reality for the teacher. Teachers are seen as facilitators –roving and supporting, guiding, setting up discussions and learning focuses, inviting participation in activity etc. -  rather than the sage on the stage.  Heppell sees the need to reflect what is happening in the internet within school architecture.  He talks of the internet having only three walls- connections are not limited- and therefore buildings should also offer multiple ways of connecting and working.  This is paralleled to some extent with the New Zealand’s Governments policy direction for Modern Learning environments.

    Tessa I agree helping teachers and leaders evolve and grow in ideas, knowledge and wisdom as well as technology skill is key to making new things happen.  As teaching is very complex and is based on so many assumptions it takes time to change need to unravel misplaced preconceptions some of the old to recreate  new visions and ideas of the future.

    Kia ora 

  • Kaye Gillies (View all users posts) 01 Jun 2015 11:33am ()

    Further to the above - I enjoyed the way Steph Happell looks at how students can influence what modern learning environments look like.

    Heppell gives a wonderful example of how student voice can be heard and responded to.  He talked about how for years students have drawn over desks walls etc.  and this has been frowned upon.  Students bought forward the idea of turning desktops and all walls into whiteboard surfaces so they can legitimately express themselves by making their mark.  Photos can capture images and surfaces be reused.  Whether this idea rocks your socks or not I think this is an excellent example of the power of student voice.


  • Geoff Childs (View all users posts) 02 Jun 2015 10:04am ()

    I could not agree more with you Kaye. The concept on "open space technology" came about partly because waiters in New York restaurants noticed that when groups met for lunch they often asked for  extra napkins to doodle on, write notes, ideas, graphics etc and realised that sometimes the most powerful conversations that generate new knowledge happens well away from formal board type meetings. The same happens in schools with students and teachers, providing multiple opportunities to enable these to be captured seems to make a lot of sense. So what stops us?

  • Tracey Arthurs (View all users posts) 01 Jun 2015 7:08pm ()

    In order to resource wisely and widely educators need to be mindful of what’s the intended outcome is - is it children who are connected, actively involved life-long learners? At our last Teacher Only Day, where the focus was e-learning; it was great to be reminded by our e-learning team that the goal is not for the technology to drive the learning; and so this is where the challenge as leaders becomes complex:

    How do leaders juggle ...

    • resourcing digital equipment alongside other curriculum resource requests?

    • and then making decisions about which ICT equipment is best for our school’s situation?

    • staff capabilities; ‘reluctancy’ and passions?

    • community perceptions - equality and equity?

    • what learning opportunities can digital technologies support and enhance?

    • how can digital technologies support learners and teachers?

    I was challenged at the April hui by Jane Gilbert’s talk about teaching and learning and preparing children for a future that doesn’t yet exist as we know it. This is exciting but daunting - how can leaders action effective strategic plan for something that’s unknown? So once again more questions than answers.

    I’m looking forward to the webinar in a couple of weeks.

  • Kate Dare (View all users posts) 03 Jun 2015 7:58pm ()

    There is plenty of literature (be it written or digital) expounding the use of e-learning and developing digital citizens - importantly it is found in the 'Effective Pedagogy' section of the NZC. There are many reasons why resourcing e-learning needs to be done "widely and wisely". For example, possible pitfalls:

    • Ending up with a lot of 'bling' technology that does not enhance learning for students - they become mere consumders of information;
    • Ending up with lots of technology that teachers don't use because they don't know how - all the whizz bang, but lack of pedagogical knowledge;
    • Buying lots of wireless devices without a robust wireless infrastructure so these run reliably;
    • Unreliable ICT system - it is always breaking down;
    • Lots of money wasted on the wrong devices that don't do what teachers want them to do.

    I could go on with list, but focusing on the positive...a wide and wise resourcing of e-learning will ultimately lead to 'Student-centred, authentic, higher-order, collaborative learning, and digital literacy, is enhanced by ubiquitous digital technologies.'

    Principal's need to be strategic in resourcing "widely and wisely in growing e-learning capacities". An e-learning strategic plan is essential; this should sit underneath the school strategic plan 'fleshing out' this area.

    For example at Ruahine one of our school strategic aims is that: "Technologies are used effectively to integrate e-learning across the curriculum to enhance teaching and learning." This is expanded on in our 3 year e-learning strategic plan that sets out goals in line with the different dimensions of the e-learning planning framework (Beyond the Classroom; Teaching and Learning; Professional Learning; Leadership; Technologies and Infrastructure). How we plan to work towards these goals in then broken down over three years. At two different schools I have develop e-learning strategic planning and have found the e-learning planning framework very useful to guide this. It is: "A ‘road map’ that enables schools/teachers to identify where they are, the practical steps they can take to improve their practice, and connects them to relevant information or services to support them in doing this. The framework provides processes and practices that internationally have been shown to be critical factors in lifting schools’ e-learning capability." 

    Our e-learning strategic planning is allowing us to resource widely and wisely; we are developing different aspects of our e-learning capability and keeping our spending focused on our priorities. To be able to lead this, principals need to keep up-to-date knowledge of this area (although it is not essential to know everything, it is important to know where to find guidance). 

  • Cherie (View all users posts) 04 Jun 2015 10:11pm ()

    Wow thanks to everyone who have shared their e learning pathways so far.  It looks like most people have made a start whether it be at the right starting point or not the seed has been planted ;)  I am really interested in how this might grow in our school and there have been some great starting points shared.  Pedagogical foundations of e learning and modern learning environments and also based and grounded in student needs.  I would love to see some effective modern learning environments in action, in fact I might drop that idea at my next PLG cluster group, I am sure there are a few schools there gaining traction in this area that I could learn more from.  I love the idea of the schools having shared TOD and sharing pedagogy.  

    Nga mihi ki a koutou

  • Tessa Gray (View all users posts) 09 Jun 2015 10:58am ()

    Hi Cherie, re: Modern Learning Environments. This Google presentation might be of interest to you. This resource (primarily for secondary schools) focuses on Modern Learning pedagogies and Modern Learning environments. 

  • Campbell Maunder (View all users posts) 09 Jun 2015 2:47pm ()

    Kia Ora everyone, 


    I have enjoyed sharing in the e-learning leadership journeys that we are all on. It is an area where taking your time, establishing the vision and thinking behind 'the gear' and ensuring teacher understanding is all hugely important. My work in recent years has been getting many of the 'nuts and bolts' in place for our school to enable the exciting stuff to happen for teachers and learners. 


    Below is some of the work I have recently taken my team through in relation to us as a school entering our next phase of e-learning. 



    e-Learning Thinking, Pedagogy and Planning


    Getting the (learning) horse

    in front of the (I.T) cart…


    • Why bother?


    • Is it good marketing? Yes, probably - but blimmin expensive and somewhat empty unless it’s followed up by great teaching and improved outcomes for students!


    • Here is a great quote outlining Innovation specialist Grant Lichtman’s views on innovation and I.T  

      • “I am more interested in how effective archers are at choosing the right arrows and right targets than I am in the shape of their bows.”

        • The Arrows: questions, problems, inquiry, passion, creativity and introspection

        • The Target: learning outcomes

        • The Bows: Digital (and other) devices


    • You may notice a shift in focus here I.T knowledge is not the ultimate target, rather a tool to enable greater levels of personalisation and innovation which we believe will lead to higher outcomes for kids!

      • We acknowledge that teachers and students will have to learn some actual ‘I.T’ skills along the way for this deeper learning to happen


    What the research tells us about well-managed e-Learning: From our School Policy on e-Learning

    • Enabling e-learning is defining ‘e-learning’ as learning and teaching that is facilitated by or supported through the appropriate use of information and communication technologies (ICTs).


    • e-learning can cover a spectrum of activities from supporting learning to blended learning (the combination of traditional and e-learning practices), to learning that is delivered entirely online.


    • Whatever the technology, however, learning is the vital element. E-learning is not simply associated with modes of delivery or the functionality of a particular technology, but forms part of a conscious choice of the best and most appropriate ways of promoting effective learning.


    • Best practice e-learning enables accessible, relevant, and high-quality learning opportunities that improve student engagement and achievement. E-learning has the potential to transform the way teaching and learning takes place. It is about using technologies effectively across the curriculum to connect schools and communities and to provide accessible, relevant, and high-quality learning opportunities so that every learner is better able to achieve their full potential.


    • Connecting the dots:

      • Recapping on our vision at our school and our Strategic Aims

      • What have we learnt from Accelerating Learning in Literacy (ALL)?

      • What can we tie in from Joseph Driessen’s work with us?

    Our Vision:


    Enriched and successful learners who achieve excellence and contribute positively to society.


    MIS Charter: How the Strategic Aims are driving our move towards Future Focused Learning and this most-recent investment


    Strategic Aim 1:

    To know our MIS students in order to achieve ongoing improvements towards and beyond National Standards (Reading, Writing and Mathematics) in readiness for College.

    • How do we think this shift into higher use of digital devices and digital spaces might assist here?


    Strategic Aim 2:

    To ensure that the Maori Culture is alive and well at MIS.

    • SAFP ‘what’s best for Maori is best for all’ (Bishop et al)

      • Ka Hikitia

      • Ka Hikitia (Ministry of Education, 2007) emphasises that “culture

    counts” and describes a commitment to “knowing, respecting and

    valuing where students are, where they come from and building on

    what they bring with them” (page 20).

    • Could personalising learning and using digital tools allow students to experience success ‘where [they] are, where they come from and building on what they bring with them’?


    Strategic Aim 3:

    To promote the unique character of MIS.

    • MIS is known as a school that sets students up for the future with a broad range of valuable experiences. Along this theme, we are providing our students experience and capability in multiple operating systems (Mac, Windows, Google OS). This is not a ‘clunky weakness’, but a strategic strength.

    • In what ways might ‘the unique character of MIS’ be promoted through smart teaching and the use of these tools?



    • What Behaviour for Learning will we need to ensure our learners are skilled at with further use of digital tools?

      • What behaviours and routines will we need to teach and establish to allow these tools to work in our classes?

        • Storage

        • Charging

        • Care

        • Security

      • What does ADMIRE look like in a digital space?

    • We will be linking back to PB4L - particularly as we learn about ‘Digital Citizenship’


    Literacy PLD (Including ALL)

    • Amanda’s summary of her successful ALL intervention touched on the importance of rich experiences, relevance, choice, ownership, audience and student voice. These things are true of all learning. This list of factors for success was very similar from school to school through the ALL feedback.

      • How might these things be aided and enhanced through the increased availability and use of digital devices?


    Landing the plane at Wellington:

    • Joseph Driessen used an analogy likening successful learning to being like successfully landing a plane at Wellington airport.

      • How might the availability and smart use of these tools help us to successfully plan and navigate against the ‘crosswinds’ of challenging students?

        • Could planned use of specific digital resources allow for greater personalisation of learning?

        • Could they be a ‘hand grenade’ - changing the pace when the energy levels are lagging?


    How do we think using digital devices and digital spaces can ‘change the game’ for us and for kids?

    • Creative capabilities at our fingertips

    • Info at our fingertips

    • High engagement, relevance and ownership for kids

    • Genuine audience for sharing learning  

      • Facebook

      • Google Docs

        • Teacher

        • Each other!

    • Meaningful collaboration

      • It is good at democratizing the creation and management of knowledge, which can be controlled by either the teacher or by the student.

      • Videoconference facilities, listening to a teacher in some other part of the world, politely raising their hands and responding to the questions she posed.

      • Students stood and recited the parts of the human heart as they rotated images on their iPads at the direction of the teacher.

      • At Franklin Community School in Indianapolis, Indiana, students in Don Wettrick’s revolutionary Innovations class are designing, refining and prototyping projects of their own creation through social media outreach.

      • At Mount Vernon Presbyterian in Atlanta, Georgia, a ninth grade class is working with the teacher to write and publish its own history book.


    From Grant Lichtman again:


    Our job is not to help the students pull the bow, they are already better at that than most of us. Our job is to help them learn which bows and arrows to use, help them strengthen their arms, and know when to use their arrows and for what purpose.


Join this group to contribute to discussions.

e-Learning: Leadership

e-Learning: Leadership

Exploring leadership for change, vision, policy and strategy that integrates ICTs into learning.