Monday, 10 December 2018

Final Inquiry Reflection 2018

Last week the final Paideia seminars took place for the Year 5&6 and Year 7&8 Extension groups. The Y5&6 seminar took place on Tuesday afternoon and the Y7&8 seminar took place the following morning on the Wednesday.

The provocative statement put to the students was: 'The Arts are just as important as academic subjects'. It was quite interesting to hear their viewpoints based on this provocative statement. Many decided that academic subjects such as reading and maths were more important than the arts. Some argued that reading is the most important subject because it helps with all subjects. Some said that the arts should be optional. Others said that the arts are important for giving students who are not good at reading or maths the chance to express themselves. The variety of opinions was interesting. There was no dominant thinking (agree or disagree) towards or against the statement.

I was impressed with the way in which the Year 5&6 students were engaged with the discussions. Most students were able to express their thoughts and opinions with the group. Most were able to build on the ideas of others which demonstrated that they were actually listening to what was being said.

It was a different story with the Year 7&8 group. It was quite difficult to get half of the group to engage properly with the discussions. Quite a few were reluctant to share. I think that I made the mistake of holding the seminar in class. There were no stand alone tables so the students sat on their chairs facing each other. The students had also completed quite a complex task before hand, so in hindsight it was probably not a good idea to hold our seminar straight after.

Overall, I am happy with the way that the Paideia seminars have panned out. We didn't have any in Term 1 due to the lack of time and due to our FiaFia event. I do feel that it's still something that needs to be pursued next year because it does give our students the chance to improve their critical thinking skills and communication skills.

Monday, 20 August 2018

Inquiry Reflection - Term 2 Paideia Seminar results

Inquiry Reflection

Towards the end of Term 2 both extension groups participated in a Paideia Seminar. The seminars were filmed and then I analysed how well the students participated during the seminars.

This is a graph that shows the Year 5&6 Extension group results. There were only 3 students who spoke at least 10 times or more. There were 8 students who spoke between 5-10 times. Four students spoke less than 5 times and three students were away. The more confident students tended to contribute more ideas and were able to elaborate on what they were saying.

Here is a graph of the Year 7&8 Extension students participation from their Paideia Seminar last term. One student dominated the conversations with more than 15 talk times. Another student who was also quite confident spoke more than 10 times. There were 8 students who spoke between 5-10 times. Five students spoke less than 5 times and two students were away. The students who spoke the most tended to be very self-confident and articulate. This was in contrast to the shy students who needed to be prompted to share.

This is the second year that I have been using Paideia Seminars to encourage students to think and to communicate clearly with others. Once again the confidence of the student makes a big difference in whether or not they participated effectively, regardless of whether they researched their inquiry topic effectively or not.

Next steps: To focus on helping the shy students use effective strategies to help them to prepare well and to share their ideas. To encourage the shy students to contribute more often in the next Paideia seminar at the end of the term.

Tuesday, 7 August 2018

ICT for Learning (Mind Lab)

Last week we split into small groups of 3 to create a short movie about one of the 21st Century skills needed for learners. The skill we looked at was ICT for Learning.


Thursday, 2 August 2018

Mind Lab Session 1 2018

Yesterday I went along to a class being run by Mind Lab at Pakuranga College. I am working towards a qualification called the Post Graduate Certificate in Applied Practice. Why did I sign up? Well I had seen the adverts and was interested, but I didn't actually sign up until I knew that someone else I knew had. I was interested to see what was on offer and I was keen to up-skill.

It's a 32 week course. The first 16 weeks involves attending classes for 4 hours, one afternoon, per week. The second half of the course still involves online learning and assessment workshops.

So far, so good. I've met a few interesting people and during the evening I had the chance to hear different teaching experiences from a range of teachers from different backgrounds. Our facilitator Danielle was fantastic and I enjoyed the class even though it had been a long day. I'm looking forward to next weeks session, even though I did wonder what I was thinking when I signed up.

Monday, 9 July 2018

Y7&8 Extension group Paideia Seminar - Term 2

Here are some snippets from the Year 7&8 Paideia Seminar held in Term 2. The theme was flight and the provocative statement that was put to the students was: 'Developing new technologies may be the only way to ensure the survival of the human race.' Here are just some of their ideas regarding this idea and their ideas around 'Flight'.

Friday, 6 July 2018

Y5&6 Extension group Paideia Seminar - Term 2

Here are some snippets from the Year 5&6 Paideia Seminar held in Term 2. The theme was flight and the provocative statement that was put to the students was: 'Developing new technologies may be the only way to ensure the survival of the human race.' Here are just some of their ideas regarding this idea and their ideas around 'Flight'.

Friday, 25 May 2018

DFI - Final session and Google exam

Today was the final session of our Google Digital Fluency Intensive workshop. We had 3 hours to sit the exam online and received our results a few minutes later. It was quite a nerve wracking experience and in hindsight I should have spent less time on the multi-choice questions and more time on the scenarios.

Overall I have enjoyed participating in the DFI workshop. I feel like I have improved my overall digital fluency which was the goal from the start.

DFI - Ubiquitous Learning

This morning at our final Manaiakalani DFI workshop Dorothy talked about another one of the kaupapa words: Ubiquitous. This means that in this new digital age students should be able to learn anytime, anywhere and at any pace.


In the past, learning took place between 9 - 3pm for most students. In a digital environment teachers can plan high quality learning for students who can access content/resources anytime, anywhere and at any pace.

In our community the opportunity to access learning at anytime means that students have a greater chance of success.

Friday, 18 May 2018

DFI - Keeping our learners and families empowered!

At todays workshop Dorothy talked about another one of our four Manaiakalani kaupapa words: 'Empowered'. We use the word 'empowered’ now instead of the word ‘agency’ because our community tends to associate the word 'agency' with negative experiences.

As educators we tend to take this word 'empowered' for granted. We have access to information at our fingertips. We have a variety of choices and have the resources available to us to select if needed. However many families in our decile one community do not.

Empowerment is about choice and about having the ability to choose. Unfortunately far too many of our families are disempowered because they have little choice over what they can do in many areas of their lives.

The fact that we can now help our learners to become more empowered is huge. Our students now have much greater choice over how they access and share information to improve their learning. Each child who has access to a device and is connected online, can have access to unlimited information and resources like never before. The visible nature of our class sites and blogs ensures that families know what their children are learning about too. Hopefully this shift in enabling our communities to become more 'empowered' will result in more positive outcomes for the families in our communities.


Thursday, 17 May 2018

DFI - Google Hangouts

Last week on Friday during our DFI workshop we practiced learning how to use Google Hangouts. I have used Google Hangouts before with my class but I don't use it often enough. One of our tasks for our homework this week was to book in a Google Hangout with either Dorothy, Gerhard or Fiona and take a quicktime screen recording of it. I managed to complete a hangout with Dorothy, but I filmed it using a video camera as I know that I need to fix my sound. Here is my hangout with Dorothy that has been edited to shorten it a bit.

I even had a quick hangout with my friend Fleur from the DFI workshops the following day. Unfortunately the sound didn't record so I really need to get that sorted asap.

Friday, 11 May 2018

DFI Workshop 7 - Managing Workflow

During our Deep Dive section we looked at a Google extension called: OneTab. It collects all open tabs and puts them into a list with a timestamp. Useful for when you have too many tabs open.

We also looked at managing our Email workflow.
If you go into your settings then you can click on the tabs to see where you can make changes to improve your workflow. 

In Calendar we looked at how we could use shortcut keys to access the different views (e.g. week or month) quicker. We also used Calendar to create events as reminders to ourselves or as invitations to events with others e.g. meetings. There were lots of useful tips and tricks that will help me manage my workflow.

DFI - Manaiakalani Cluster tweets

Manaiakalani Cluster tweet - every time a child posts something on their blog from our cluster of schools it appears on our Manaiakalani twitter feed. There are almost 200k tweets! Amazing!

Our schools twitter feed appears on our school website. It only shows work which has been posted by our students so it's great for our parents and community.

DFI Workshop 7 - Being Connected

Today's main focus was about improving and managing our workflow. We also looked closely at one our Manaiakalani kaupapa/sayings which is about being 'connected'.

Harnessing the power of the internet to make us more connected is powerful, but face to face contact is also important so that the digital connection is powerful.

Our Manaiakalani cluster of schools is well connected, but now that there are outreach clusters, the learn, create, share pedagogy has spread out even further across the country.

Having a shared language is important. Our Manaiakalani pedagogy is learn, create, share. Our kaupapa is the four elements: connected, ubiquitous, empowered, and visible. Each one of these elements cannot work well without the other.

Friday, 4 May 2018

DFI Workshop 6 - Visibility and Evaluating Sites

Earlier this morning Dorothy presented the idea of making teaching and learning visible.

Why is this important? Here are some key reasons why:

1. Children who have access to their learning via an effective class site are more likely to achieve better results. Children need to know what they are meant to be learning and why.

2. Sharing of teacher inquiry online helps other teachers to improve their overall teaching practice. Therefore the quality of the teaching profession overall is boosted because of the sharing of quality ideas, resources, exemplars and learning.

3. Barriers are removed so that families/whanau can access/view children's learning.

In 2013 famous rapper and musician WILL.I.AM visited our Manaiakalani community of learning because of our visibility and high profile online. He donated $100k to support learning in our Manaiakalani schools.

Goal 1: To make my site more visible. I went incognito online to double check that all my documents etc were visible as some were not.

Goal 2: To make my site more multi-modal: I am planning to include more images and movies etc with less text to make my site more appealing for my audience.

During our 'Deep Dive' session we looked at many different add on programmes that can support our teaching and learning. I think that I will explore 'Sandbox' a little more to see how it can support movie making at our school.


The next thing we looked at was evaluating sites for leading learning. We looked at each others sites and used a google form to evaluate each site. It was quite nerve wracking to be assessed by my peers but surprisingly I received quite a few positive comments. It was interesting to see what others have done with their sites. The main thing is that we need to make it appealing, visible, and easy to access.

I spent a little bit of time working on improving my class site.

Friday, 20 April 2018

NZEI National Pasifika Fono 2018 - Day 2

Here are my notes for day 2 of the workshop

Fa’anana Efeso Collins (Auckland Councillor) was the MC for day 2. 

Keynote Speaker: Gilbert Enoka - Smoothing the Waters

'He is internationally renowned for his 18-year history with the All Blacks, first as their mental skills coach and now as All Blacks Manager - Leadership. He has been with the All Blacks for over 200 tests and during that time the team has won back-to-back Rugby World Cups, one Laureus Award (for the best team in the world), 14 Bledisloe Cups, three Grand Slams, seven Tri Nations and five Rugby Championships.' (Taken from NZEI Pasifika Fono site)

'Great to Great' - A Personal Story
  1. What one word or phrase would you use to describe where you and your role in your work currently stands - today?
  2. What does next level of performance look like for you and your role in your work?
2011 & 2015 - All Blacks back to back world champs
Strong lessons for those who are chasing great and pursuing greatness:

  1. Set the challenge high! Vision needs to mobilise the heart and spirit. Aim: to be the most dominant team in the history of world rugby. Set vision high, pull current reality up to meet the vision. 
  2. Get the right Mindset. Above the line (open, curious, committed to learning) and below the line (defensive, closed, committed to being right). Below the line - different belief, negative. Above the line - listen deeply, creative, innovative, location - where am I? most people go below the line
  3. Having a clear mind. 
  4. Be deliberate with your energisers. All Blacks played overseas (France) - had to energise staff and players. Did pig racing (not real pigs), whoever wins gets paid money. Releases brain chemicals, releases stress. All Black groups had a task to take a group photo in front of iconic things. Energisers allow to release stress and grow. 
  5. Coming together as One Force - a surging mass of Black. Black Jersey defines us. AIG (had to have this company coz a few All Blacks associated with it , Silver Fern connects everyone to this country. Uniting energy to understanding. Video of Tana Umaga leading the haka. Coming together as One Force - a surging mass of Black. ‘Vision, Belonging, Environment, Values’ - If split on a triangle, 
  1. Sense of Belonging is at the bottom of the triangle. Need to feel that you belong. Use peoples names. Sense of belonging is huge. 
  2. Environment is second. Reinforces persons sense of belonging. Environment is shaped in a way that connects what people have to do. 
  3. Values.
  4. Vision. 
Person who has a strong sense of belonging is more likely to adhere to values and vision of a company, school, job etc. 

6. Fear is okay. Can’t have courage without fear. You have permission to get the jitters, the butterflies, the fear. Feel it…move through it…just don’t get stuck…..keep moving! Willie Apiata - ‘Fear kept me alive’. Richie McCaw was a great leader. 

Gilbert Enoka - Jan 2016 - NZ order of merit award. Grew up in a children's home. 
Greatness will always be up to the choices we make and the opportunities we take. 

Journey with Joshua Iosefo - Workshop 1

Ice breaker - important to know the world the kids are from
23 yrs old
Samoan/Niuean AUT graduate

Joshua is well known for his spoken word poem 'Brown Brother' that he wrote when he was only 17. He also spent some time working at our school in the Intermediate block with students back in 2013.

Purposeful Currents:

The Chosen Current
* Joshua pulled out of a high decile school to attend a decile one school. Noticed that there were obvious differences e.g. many kids had not lunch. Finally believed he was smart. Developed more empathy towards his peers. Current changed for him as he became the top of the class student.
* Inquiry learning. Kids were protesting about an issue and realised that they were agents of change.
* Noticed that older kids tended to drop out of school by Year 11.
* 'Listen to the whispers in your life' - Oprah

Unwanted Currents
* 'Can you not' currents
* He struggled to make friends in high school
* Felt disconnected to his peers
* Important to build resilience in students

Conflicting Currents
* 'Crap, I didn't think about that' current
* When entering Tertiary study, students feel most vulnerable and most anxious
* Some subjects chosen at college are not suitable for Tertiary study in some areas
* Pressure on students to juggle study, sport, family, commitments, jobs etc

Currents - What’s your current situation?

I thoroughly enjoyed this workshop. Joshua is an engaging and energetic speaker. He did really well to remind us how we need to recognise and understand that our students live in a different world to when we were students. We were asked to reflect on our current teaching situation and think about where our 'waka' is in this current situation. 

Keynote Speaker 2: Dr Jemaima Tiatia-Seath
“Pushing the Boundaries”

Epeli Hau’ofa - ‘Our Sea of Islands’ 1991

“We should not be defined by the smallness of our islands, but by the greatness of our oceans”

Sia Figiel - ‘Where we once belonged’ and ‘Freelove’

‘Caught between Cultures’ - Jemaima Tiatia
Received some support and backlash. Discussed issues e.g. church, financial commitments etc

Racism: As a 17yr old, experienced some racism. was not considered academic material. pushed her to prove them wrong. 
Need to be open to diversity. Allow youths to follow their own path. 

Dealt with youth suicide and Tongan youth. Worried about working with Tongan communities. 
Approaches to suicide are different for different cultures.

Suicide - 20 years experience
  • Connection. disconnection is where we lose our youth, ethnic identity, racism, social support, 
  • Mental health literacy - schools, need to get better at identifying signs of depression, withdrawal etc
  • Not just a health focus but a sociocultural approach
  • Access, cultural competency
  • Gay community + messaging - need to get safe messages out there
  • Showing vulnerability, ok to show weakness, ok to grieve
  • Pacific resilience isn't built - how do we frame this resilience? what is it? kids who are leaders, responsible etc…that's resilience
  • Pacific frameworks - normalising/be the mainstream
Way finding through her work. Uses model of the waka and the roles of people in the waka
  1. front of the waka, Stroke, the researcher
  2. Caller - research teams, advisors, university
  3. 4&5 - Engine Room - family, values, spirituality
  4. (6) Steerer - Youth, communities - they get a complete view of whats in front of them. Youth are the ones who should have the solutions for suicide
Government Inquiry into Mental Health and Addiction - on the panel, 6 on the panel. 

'Diary of a Mad Brown Woman' - Vasa Fia Collins
Workshop 4

Lack of diversity in workplace
Still a long way to go for our PI students
Lack of PI leaders in schools

Cognitive Heuristics

Can't just have a gender mix, need diversity mix too
Increased Creativity and innovation needs diversity and diversity of thought
Everyone has cultural capital. How do we ensure that peoples talents are utilised
Important to have leadership buy in
Diversity is powerful
 - images, visual mihi, stories about our life, cool ice breaker, 

Cognitive heuristics is a mental shortcut that allows people to solve problems and make judgements quickly and effectively. Not always fair or accurate - biased

People are bad at recognising their own biases.

Cognitive Heuristics and Leadership
5% of decisions are made consciously and the rest is made unconsciously
Blind Auditions: US Orchestras. Likelihood of selecting a female improved by 500% previously made up of white males
Lots of bias in names too. 
iceberg model - conscious mind = tip of iceberg (choice), rest below = unconscious bias (beliefs, emotions, habits, values etc)

Critter State (basic needs, are we alive or dead?) vs Smart State (thinking outside of the box)

Brains feel under threat by Difference
harder for different/diverse people to share ideas in a group coz ideas are not always accepted. 

By age of 5 kids have already developed stereotypes. Doing something ‘like a girl’ is sometimes viewed as an insult.

Cognitive heuristics - empathetic response was higher for people who viewed faces of same race compared to faces of other races.

Invest in relationships with people who are different to us.

Overall Reflection: 
I think that the selection of speakers and workshops at the Fono was fantastic and I only wish that I was able to attend all the workshops. The two MCs Karl Vasau and Efeso Collins were awesome, full of island humour and kept the Fono running smoothly. I valued the fact that I was there with a couple of work colleagues (Andrea and Sally) so that we could bounce ideas of each other. The lunches provided by Waipuna Hotel were delicious. 

I can't wait to attend the next Fono. My only suggestion would be to provide some workshops based around the use of digital technology and possible career paths for our Pasifika students in either the Tech Industry or in STEM based industries. 

Actually I would also love for there to be a Pasifika Fono for Intermediate and/or College age students (Year 7 to Year 10) where they can be surrounded by other like minded peers and Pasifika role models in a wide range of industries: Sports, Media, Arts, Tech, Science/Medicine etc. Teachers can only do so much to encourage all of our students to succeed, but our students need to believe in themselves too, and have access to the support systems to help them to succeed. 

Thursday, 19 April 2018

NZEI National Pasifika Fono 2018 - Day one

NZEI Pasifika Fono 2018 - Wayfinders

During the first week of the school holidays I was lucky enough to be able to attend the Pasifika Fono which is held every two years. I went along with Sally and Andrea who are both teachers at our school and who are also of Pacific descent. It was held at the Waipuna Hotel and Conference Centre in Auckland on Thursday 19th April and Friday 20th April. I felt very privileged and grateful for the opportunity to attend this event. 

Karl Vasau (Principal of Rowandale School) was our MC for Thursday. 

Here are some of my notes and key ideas from the day. 

Speaker: Linda Stuart 
Principal of May Rd Primary School and National President of NZEI Te Riu Roa
* Schools are not businesses and shouldn’t be treated as such. 
* Genuine collaboration across the system can make such a difference for our students.
* Diversity should be at the heart of education system - language, culture and identity needs to be acknowledged.
* Crisis in education - The new government needs to fix it. There are less teachers getting trained and many don’t stay beyond 5 years. 
* The common message across NZ is that principals/teachers are not doing their job properly due to the lack of time and resources. 

Keynote Speaker: Lilomaiava Ema Sinope - Wayfinding

* Hokulea and Hikianalia - Wayfinding in the Pacific
* Talks about a man called Papa Mo who became a master navigator, a way finder
* Responsibility to Serve with Love
* At the core of way finding is culture - foundational values of love, respect and humility, and at the centre is light
* "Don’t pray for good weather, pray for courage"
* Talked about the Pacific Voyaging society and Hokule'a 
* Papa Mo successfully navigated the Hokule'a to Tahiti without the use of instruments
* One Ocean, One People
* 1985 - Hokule'a voyage of discovery - sparked a reawakening of genealogical connections. Proved that pacific people were best mariners in world. 
* Voyaging was intentional, not by accident.
* We come together because we are duty bound to ensure that our children are given the best possible chance of life in this changing world.
* It's our children’s right to have knowledge of our history of way finding.

Cultural Competency - Helen Varney - Workshop 1
Principal Target Road School
* Culture First
need to be able to understand culture - its soft wired into our brain -
it connects all of our experiences and helps to make sense of the world.

* Awareness
identity, culture and language are vital to the way we learn
it's a way of being - do our staff understand and have this way of being?

* Cultural Competence
  • ability to recognise cultural displays and meaning making
  • understand that students are culturally different
  • know yourself first before knowing others
* Influences that change who we are:
  • where we are born
  • who we are born with
  • what do you know about yourself? what do you value?
  • what do you tell your children?
  • schools
  • friends
  • those we love
cultural competency - Teachers: 
  • Mana
  • funds of knowledge and skills essential for household or individual functioning and well being
  • a set of conceptual scripts that guide our comprehension of the world
* vital to know who you are
importance of knowing cultural background - gives mana to your culture
Tama itu - TedEx talk
mana - everyone has it, roots you to your past, present and future

* forming relationships with students, common ground, connections, share where you all come from, how to connect, create opportunities to share, give mana to the land - Te Reo
encourage kids to talk in their language, treaty - bi-cultural pathway through Maori side
need to encourage and value language

* what are your cultural roots?
value, unpack, share
lots of documents available as resources: TKI, Tapasa, Pacifica education plan, tataiako, ka hikitia, tu rangatira, hautu, 
look at culture like it’s an iceberg
surface features and deeper features
deep culture
if lots of cultures in classroom: focus on deep culture, roots of culture - world view, core beliefs, group values, some commonalities
4 Key Points:
  1. Value Culture, Language and Identity
  2. be a learner
  3. build intellectual capacity
  4. take action
need to listen closely to what kids say, dig deeper, get to know the kids background 

Keynote Speaker 2: Damon Salesa

NZ’s Pacific Futures - book published

Matalasi Pasefika
Youth, tech, digital natives

* 95% of Samoans use Facebook but use English not Samoan
* most pacific societies have not only retained the integrity of their cultures, language and societies, but have often used new tech to consolidate them.
* pacific digital - uses foreign platforms and tech eg. facebook, twitter etc
limited infrastructure, but with cell phones it doesn’t matter, prepay economy
* kids have access to anything online now - protected from certain types of information in the past
* communication - kids connect using cellphones, changed concept of time esp. island time
* generational difference - our kids are different from us, more likely to have English as first language, marry outside of ethnicity, no religion, born in NZ, less likely to own own home, more likely to be unemployed

* severe wealth inequalities, less than 18% of P.I. own homes

* Pacific Innovations e.g. 3 Wise Cousins  - 10th highest grossing movie in NZ
* PI parents decide that kids will be their retirement investment strategy, PI live in large families to save money, look after babies and old people
* home ownership is important
* now pacific people are moving more e.g. out of auckland coz rent is cheaper
* changing market e.g. working alongside Asian businesses/products

Mana Moana: Planting Your Feet 
Ailaoa Aoina and William Pua - Workshop 2


William Pua, Ailaoa Aoina and Evangelene have spent 4 years collectively developing their Mana Moana practice in their respective fields of psychology (Youth forensics, Private Practice, Mental health), social work, community development & education as well as collaborating on various conjoint projects. 
This workshop will demonstrate how they have used Mana Moana in education, leadership, and therapeutic settings, allowing for Pasefika ancestral knowledge and wisdom to inform and guide our practice. Whilst also giving access to young people to see, feel and experience the wise and healing ways of our tupuna and cultures, so that even in this urban contemporary context of Aotearoa, they may find their way ''home''. (Taken from NZEI Pasifika Fono programme/website)
When we entered the room to this workshop there was a large woven flax mat covering the floor. Labels with the different countries around the world and the pacific was placed on the mat. Participants were given paper cut outs of feet and were asked to write their name and key members of their family on each piece of paper. Then four participants were selected (including myself) to share where they came from and had to place the footprints (paper cut outs) on top of the names of the country they were from. 
I thought that this was a great idea/activity to share with others. It was an interesting way to find out where others came from and their backgrounds. It would be neat to carry out this activity with my students. 

Friday, 6 April 2018

DFI Workshop - Part 5: Google Keep and Google Sites

Time to reflect and share with colleagues:

What did I learn that increased my understanding of Manaiakalani kaupapa and pedagogy? That a teaching programme needs to be multimodal to suit the needs of all learners. No two people learn exactly the same way so its important to engage all the senses to maximise learning and understanding e.g. video, text, sound, images, songs, activities etc

What did I learn that could improve my confidence, capability or workflow as a professional? I learnt how to use the new Google site more effectively to make it more multi-modal for my learners. 

What did I learn that could be used with my learners? How to embed code for carousel function (for images) onto a site or blog. 

What did I learn that could improve my confidence, capability or workflow in my personal life? I learnt how to use Google Keep more effectively. It is linked to my phone through the app so that I can update/check it whenever I need to.

Link to site: Conservation and Emperor Penguins

You can click on the link above to view the site that I created today. I practiced how to add images, text, links, YouTube clips etc. I am looking forward to improving my own class site and I am keen to create another separate site for next term. 

Friday, 23 March 2018

DFI - Digital Pepeha

In todays DFI session we shared our digital Pepeha with the group. It was awesome to hear everyone’s individual Pepeha. I think that this is a great way to learn your own pepeha as it is rewindable and the images make the pepeha more interesting.

We used Screencastify to record our movies. I think that this is a great programme especially for students as it allows them to record themselves talking about their work or learning. There is also an option for video so that you can see yourself which is great for students.

Friday, 16 March 2018

DFI - Infographic using Google Draw

Today I used Google Draw to create an infographic about myself. This is the first time that I have created anything useful using this tool. There are links attached to images. I like my buttons and the fact that they are circular in shape. I think that students would enjoy using this tool to create an infographic about themselves.


Friday, 9 March 2018

DFI - Digital Fluency Intensive: Day 2 - Dealing with Data

In today's DFI session we had a go at creating a map on 'My Maps'. We used data collected from a google form about 'favourite destinations' and imported it onto 'My Maps'.

Google Forms
Using extra features - mixture of types of responses, validating,
Term 1 should be used for gathering evidence/data through surveys of kids
Great way to gather data
Can create different pathways for responses
Practiced creating and using a form

Google Sheets:
We looked at how to use the features of Google Sheets.
Student data. Deleting values from across sheet that are not needed. Put names in alphabetical order.
 drag little blue box down to add sums for rest of column.

Can type =Sum(G2+J5+K8) and then press enter to select data from within spreadsheet.

Conditional formatting
Use ‘hide sheet’ function to hide private/sensitive information

Examples: Robyn Anderson - blog post, look at kids blogs especially Mele.
How to analyse data e.g. number of blog posts
Can get kids to analyse their own data from blog posts
Question why some months were more productive than others

Blog is part of ‘Share’ - reflections, movies, writing, DLO’s, screenshots of learning, experiences. Enables kids to demonstrates that they can finish things off

I have used Google forms, sheets and maps before, but today I learnt how to use the extra features to maximise my use of them. I felt that I got the most out of Google Sheets because I liked the task where we analysed the number of times that a student posted on their blog over a year and over several years. Then the teacher can pose questions for the student or the student can analyse the data and come up with their own explanations/answers. 

Friday, 2 March 2018

DFI - Digital Fluency Intensive - Day 1

Today was the first day of a nine week digital fluency intensive. It is held on Fridays during the term. There are about 15 teachers from across the Manaiakalani Community of Learning and outreach schools. The purpose is to improve and develop our skills to help our learners. It has been an amazing day of learning with Dorothy and Gerhard.

What did I learn that increased my understanding of Manaiakalani kaupapa and pedagogy? 

Today was a good reminder of what Manaiakalani is all about. The Learn, Create, Share pedagogy works for our students. Each part of the process is important. The professional development of teachers across schools is important so that we have competent educators in front of our students to maximise and accelerate student learning. Our community needs to develop a new mindset that you don’t need to leave our community to be successful.

What did I learn that could improve my confidence, capability or workflow as a professional?

I learnt a lot of new tips and tricks, especially with how to make the most of the tools on google docs. I found that many of the tools were quite useful.

What did I learn that could be used with my learners?  

How to make the most of the google doc tools e.g. 'Explore' to add on images, links etc. How to use add-on tools

What did I learn that could improve my confidence, capability or workflow in my personal life?

How to manage my links to sites by using Google Save instead of as a bookmark.

Thursday, 18 January 2018

Apple Summer Coding School - Day 2

Apple: Presentation by Jessica Grauds, apple accessibility - iOS and diversity

This presentation focused primarily on accessibility and all the features available on
an Apple ipad.

Designing for the margins = completely accessible and ready to use. Switch control - allows access to device with a single switch. Uses 3rd party bluetooth switches. Allows accessibility for disabled people. Online accessibility is empowering for all as personal voice is equal to all. When accessibility option is available for those who need it, it benefits all.
Stella Young - champion for accessibility for disability. Believed in a societal model of
disability. Stairs or ramps?

A11Y - A community-driven effort to make web accessibility easier.

Supporting all learners - lesson design - Michelle Heath and Mel Isaacs
LBA - life before apple
Huge diversity of learners in every class.
Makes comparison between 2 diff types of learners.
Student A: very talkative, bright but performs poorly academically
Student B: very bright, high achiever, lacks friends
iBooks - Learn to code 1 & 2 - loops lesson
Identify areas in the literacy space that will be challenging for students

Challenges (how to help students)
Literacy - heading of text up or a pic for visuals, students brainstorm possible words,
teacher reads text, students tick off what they hear. SwP: kids can look out for certain
words and focus on what it means e.g. function or loop. Voice function that reads text
for students, speech mode, speak selection.
Numeracy - learning about angles etc, x tables link to for loops
Computational thinking - masking tape on floor to replicate SwP world, physically
move around maze/floor grid. Use lego to physically create maze. Remind students that
Bytes world can be spun around.

App Prototyping - Mel Isaacs
Students can start to build own world after learn to code book 2
Apps are developed for a particular purpose.
Audience - apps are developed for specific audiences. Who is my audience? Characteristics? For young students - need to think about peers and teacher as audience
A well designed UI (User interface) makes for a good UX (User experience)
Student task: developing a watch face
60 sec prototyping: WWDC17
Prototypes can be tested to try out ideas, saves time and money, ensures that you are
building the right thing. Get new ideas, diagrams to show to people then learn from the
feedback. Can use Keynote to develop app. Test it. Feedback. How can we make it better. Opens up lots of interesting design questions. Whats working? Whats not?

Hackathons and Game James in the Classroom - Sarah Geek Girl
Warm up activity: Pair up, 1, 2, 3 game. Then click finger in place of number one
Later replace number two with a feet stomp
This activity can be used in class to encourage participation
SheHacks event.
Friendship is the core way to build things together.
Hacking is Creative Problem Solving. Everyone pitches an idea. Best ideas are picked and groups are formed to work on the idea selected. Teams consist of a hipster (designer), hacker (developer), hustler (marketer)
Idea: that the thing you are learning is the chance to work and collaborate as part of a
team to design and create something.
Clear communication is important.

Day two of the workshop covered a lot of topics. I found the app prototyping presentation quite useful as I will try it out with my class as a class project. I am also interested in hosting and running a 'Hackathon' at our school. Later in the evening we all went to the Apple Headquarters in Sydney. We met with a panel of amazing female experts from Apple and from UTS who talked about their experiences. It was a privilege to listen to them and gain an insight into their jobs, experiences and the fact that there are so few women in the STEM and IT industry.

Wednesday, 17 January 2018

Apple Women Leading Learning: Coding Summer School Day 1

The Apple coding workshop was held at the UTS (University of Technology Sydney) building in Sydney. We started with a presentation about why we should teach coding.

Coding inspires creation. It’s about harnessing the power and put into hands of students
We briefly looked at the Swift Playground app and met some of the Apple presenters.
Apple Education and Girl Geek Academy

Why teach coding?
Coding is a learnable skill, Jobs and careers, To change the world, Empowerment

Very often there are incredible gains to be made from technology.
We are expert users of programmes that someone else has written - people doing
programming were actually holding power over what we do.
Coding provides opportunities for people to create own apps and programmes
Students need opportunity to create their own programmes/apps

Focus of workshop: how to become great leaders in delivering coding programme
How to deliver/sell importance of programme to school and staff

Girl Geek - Sarah CEO
Female leaders
She-Hacks - female only hackathon

Barriers for women in tech
Women are not recruited as much
Women have access to fewer resources
Girls are not encouraged to enter STEM subjects
Gender equality problem
Attitudes are a barrier
Under representation of girls in IT jobs
Influence of parents
Teacher gender biases
Career advice

How to change this?
Building self efficacy in girls
Use of positive language to build confidence in girls
Women tend to underestimate their skills compared to men

Sphero: can be programmed to respond in a unique environment

Computational participation - capacity to work collaboratively, explain ideas and
thinking with other people

Ways of thinking with Sphero
How does it impact on what we are about to undertake?
Value of activity in real world?

3 Types of Thinking:
Design Thinking
Computational Thinking
Systems Thinking

Practiced using Sphero and ipad in small groups of 3-4
Increasing speed = further distance because of velocity
Purpose: why use sphero? Connect its relation to real world/industry

Wait = length of time ball rolls in direction set previously
Stop = ball fully stops to allow for the sharp turn/angle

What is Swift? Easy to use, Interactive, Powerful, Open-source

Building lessons/tutorials

Swift Playgrounds (Lou and Michelle)

Before using spheros, need to have a foundation so don’t use as a starting point for kids.
Suits students between 11-15 years of age.
Moving beyond block based coding, lots of primary schools using Scratch
Swift playgrounds sits in between block based programming and XCode - app depth

What app would you create if you could create an app?

Coding language is unpacked through learning to code 1 module
Common language
Do learning to code 1 before trying ‘challenges’
Accessories - more games to try
Accessibility tool - turn on speaker/voice for sound for kids with poor English/low reading
age (settings, general, accessibility, speak selection and speak screen)

Learn to Code 1&2 Teacher Guide:
45 hrs of lessons

Macarena example
Who knows a dance?
How is this related to functions and loops?
Look at important vocab - put up on wall to display
Get kids to write up what they think word means

Startups with Sara (Girl Geek Academy)

Startups are about growth, scalable solutions - very big user audience e.g. airbnb,
instagram etc

Hacker - person who can code, engineer (computational thinking)
Hipster - Make things look good (design thinking)
Hustler - Make things happen, makes sure business can flourish, (systems thinking)

These qualities fit into the digital technology part of the Australian curriculum. In NZ there
is more of a focus on computational thinking and design thinking (I think)