I was handed my writer’s notebook at a meeting the other night and was left feeling a little bit empty. I wondered in which space students were able to collect and create digital artefacts? Is there something about the handwritten text or is this something that harks back to another time? What would be lost in having a digital workbook? One that allowed the collection of a range of text-types and transliteracy?
At the moment, each year level is addressing persuasive texts, from letters to the editor in Year 5 to feature articles in Year 9. This could all be done through a blog, with categories used to differentiate between the different text-types and tags used to organise the particular content. Doing it this way would not only allow an authentic audience, but the opportunity for meaningful feedback and engagement with a wider audience.
What if instead of dreaming and then waking up later grasping at those visions, we recorded them, gave them flesh, let them breathe, maybe only for a fleeting second. I have started this space for that reason. Inspired in part by Ian O’Bryne’s IMHO Blog. It is a space dedicated more to ideas than ideals.
I often stop and wonder, how did I get here? It wasn’t one particular moment, rather a series of interconnected happenings which makes up my ‘unexpected adventure’. I first had a go at telling this fractured story on my blog. However, every time I think about it, other people and events seem to stand out.
Collaboration, Communication and Creativity – Exploring the Tools for Change
Blurb for the session:
How many fantastic ideas or initiatives have failed not because of the strength of the idea, but because it failed to be heard. Change need not be restricted to the lone nut. This session is about using the power of technology to transform ideas into movements. Whether you are trying to develop a team in a school or connect a network of people, Aaron will provide a great array of practical examples for how to build change from the ground on up and why technology is the leverage that every idea needs to go from being good to great.
Here is a link to my notes.
Ignite the Learning in Your Classroom by Leading the Way
Blurb for the session:
This session will provide you with another point of view on how to flip learning. Often we talk about changing our classrooms, putting students at the centre, connecting with authentic audiences and flipping instruction. However, the first thing that needs to be flipped is the role of the educator. Instead of focusing on being a teacher, we need to go back to the beginning and become learners once again. From using social bookmarking to connect with a community, to keeping a blog to share thoughts and reflections, this will be a hands on session focusing on taking the next step in and outside of the classroom. Throughout, Aaron will provide examples of how today more than ever technology allows us to be the drivers of our own learning.
Here is a link to my notes.
Digital Creating and Making (Fringe Festival)
So often we come to conferences and see new applications flashed around, showing their possibilities and potential, only to discover that in practise they require more time and energy than was previously realised. What is often missing ingredient in all of this is constraint. This can be the time allocated or our particular knowledge and skillset, but it also exists within programs whether it be functionality or the focus of the task at hand. Too often such constraints go unseen, but by identifying them, it provides us with more clarity and allows us to get on with things in a more focused manner.
Quick Makes is about giving the chance to tinker with a range of applications and programs, each with their own constraints, to discover that creating, making and engaging with technology is not only easy but can be fun, especially when we are focused. From mashing up a website with Mozilla Thimble to creating your own visual with Google Draw, spend a few minutes exploring the potential for technology to make giving a voice to learning more doable.
Click here for the resources.
Becoming a More Connected Educator
Becoming a More Connected Educator (DIGICON15) – Created with Haiku Deck, presentation software that inspires
Click here for my notes and resources.
Becoming a More Connected Educator (Spark Talk)
A Periscope video of my 12 minute Sparktalk for DigiCon15.
Published in DLTV Journal 1.2 December 2014
Google Teachers Academy (now Google Certified Innovator) at Google in Sydney, 24th and 25th September 2014
Below are my thoughts and reflections:
Introducing Google Apps, One App at a Time
For some Google Apps for Education simply offers a more efficient way of doing what is already being done, while for others the idea of collaborating and moving to the cloud is a game changer. Although it is essential to develop a clear implementation plan, it is also important to find the small wins along the way which helps demonstrate the way that Google can revolutionise the way we collaborate and communicate in and out of the classroom. From conducting surveys, to creating digital workbooks, to managing learning goals, to sharing presentations, to developing digital community, this presentation will be jam packed with practical samples and examples. Aaron hopes to spur on new ideas and start the conversation about what you can do in your school to make change.
So You Want To Be a Google Educator
Have you ever wanted to become a Google Educator, but didn’t really know what was involved or where to start? This session is for you. Having recently gone through the process myself, I will unpack what it is all about, what is involved, the challenges you will face and how it all fits in the wider scheme of things. Throughout, I will provide you with some tips and tricks to support you along the way.
Listening to the Voices In and Out of the Classroom
Here is the blurb for the session that Steve Brophy and I presented:
One of the biggest challenges in education today is how to empower everyone and give a voice to every learner, this means moving beyond listening to those who seek to be heard and finding ways to capture every voice in and out of the classroom. From collaborating on a document to using a learning response system to reflect on a unit of work, this session will look at not only how we can use various web 2.0 tools to capture the different voices in and out of the classroom, but also how these tools can be used to provoke and prompt further into ongoing dialogue. Presenting our thoughts and reflections from a wide range of settings and scenarios, both Primary and Secondary, we hope that you leave this session armed with an array of tools and ideas that will help you go and listen to some of those lost and hidden voices today.
Here are the slides from the session:
Further notes and reflections can be found here.
Becoming a Connected Educator
A post elaborating on the presentation can be found here.