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    The Ministry of Education’s Connected Learning Advisory – Te Ara Whītiki is committed to supporting schools and communities as they plan for, manage, and use digital technologies for learning. This month we outline the exciting professional learning opportunities on offer from the Advisory throughout 2017.


    WORKSHOPS FOR TEACHERS AND LEADERS
    In 2017 the advisory is offering opportunities for school leaders, leaders of digital technologies, and teachers to come together and explore effective ways to manage and plan how your school or Community of Learning uses digital technologies for learning.
    The workshops will support teachers to:
    ·         explore ways to use technology to bring your vision for learning to life
    ·         model forms of professional learning
    ·         make connections across local schools through clusters, networks, and sharing stories
    ·         gain a clear, pragmatic sense of next steps in your own context
    ·         access the Connected Learning Advisory (CLA) as a critical friend through regional advisor support and online community spaces.
    The workshops are free of charge and will be held across the country. We aim to hold these workshops in local schools and are always keen to hear from schools who are willing to host us.
    The advisory has developed two models for workshops:
    WORKSHOP MODEL 1
    These are whole day workshops in a central location covering a broad range of topics. In the morning a team of CLA advisors facilitate a number of breakout sessions for school leaders and teachers within the context of digital technologies for learning. The afternoon session allows an opportunity for participants to build on the morning session through further facilitated planning and reflection. 
    The host school benefits from a personalised professional development session the afternoon directly preceding the day. The local CLA Advisor liaises closely with the school principal or eLearning leader to put together a workshop that the school will find beneficial and is tailored to their specific needs.
    The first of these professional learning and development days will be held on 14 March at Papatoetoe Intermediate School, Auckland, and 16 March at Tauranga Boys’ College, Tauranga.
    The themes of collaboration, agency and inclusiveness will be woven throughout workshops which will explore:
    ·         digital literacy, fluency and citizenship
    ·         designing blended learning experiences
    ·         leading eLearning and shifting thinking.
    ·         Registrations are open now for the Auckland and Tauranga workshops, and can be accessed here:
    ·         Auckland http://e.core-ed.org/r/422/4  
    ·         Tauranga http://e.core-ed.org/r/423/4
    These will be followed by workshops on 9 May at Paraparaumu College, Kāpiti Coast, and 11 May at St Catherine’s College, Wellington. If you would like to register your interest in attending, please do so here: www.core-ed.org/events/connected-learning-advisory.
    WORKSHOP MODEL 2
    These are half day workshops for smaller groups working with local CLA advisors on a single key topic. The topics for these workshops have been chosen in response to queries from schools, kura, and Communities of Learning.
    Venues for these workshops are being finalised but the topics and dates are listed below. If you would like to register an interest to ‘save the date’ please do so here: 

    core-ed.org/events/connected-learning-advisory and we will contact you when venues have been confirmed.
    Term 2 weeks 7 & 8: strategic thinking workshops
    These will be held countrywide during 12 and 22 June. They follow up on the very successful workshops held in term 4, 2016. In the morning participants will be introduced to the Strategic Thinking Roadmap (str.connectedlearning.org.nz). The afternoon sessions will be for educators who attended in 2016 and now wish to unpack the eight planning strands. 

    The aim is to:
    ·         dig more deeply into the roadmap resources
    ·         develop greater understanding of the reflective questions and the eight strands
    ·         tease out goals and actions within the school’s own context.
    Term 3 weeks 2–5: support for Communities of Learning
    These will be held countrywide from 31 July and will aim to provide support for Communities of Learning as you start to appoint middle leaders. Content will be finalised as we liaise with Communities of Learning and hear about the issues you are facing.
    Term 4 weeks 4 & 5: digital technology and senior secondary curriculum
    These will be held countrywide between 6 and 19 November. They are aimed at secondary schools and will explore the use of digital technology to enhance learning throughout the secondary curriculum. As with all our workshops, content will respond to what is top of mind for secondary school teachers and leaders.
    CONTACT THE CLA
    The Connected Learning Advisory is supporting hundreds of schools, and now also Communities of Learning, as they make strategic decisions related to learning with digital technologies.
    If you have a query about integrating technology with teaching and learning, or you want to suggest a topic for this column, contact the Connected Learning Advisory on:
    Phone: 0800 700 400
    Online form: www.tearawhitiki.org.nz or: www.connectedlearning.org.nz.                                                 
    The Ministry of Education’s Connected Learning Advisory is managed by CORE Education.
  • In 2017, the advisory is offering opportunities for school leaders, leaders of digital technologies, and teachers to come together and explore effective ways to manage and plan how your school or Community of Learning uses digital technologies for learning.

    The workshops will support teachers to:

    • explore ways to use technology to bring your vision for learning to life

    • model forms of professional learning

    • make connections across local schools through clusters, networks, and sharing stories

    • gain a clear, pragmatic sense of next steps in your own context

    • access the Connected Learning Advisory (CLA) as a critical friend through regional advisor support and online community spaces.

    The workshops are free of charge and will be held across the country. We aim to hold these workshops in local schools and are always keen to hear from schools who are willing to host us.

    The advisory has developed two models for workshops:

    Workshop Model 1

    These are whole day workshops in a central location covering a broad range of topics. In the morning a team of CLA advisors facilitate a number of breakout sessions for school leaders and teachers within the context of digital technologies for learning. The afternoon session allows an opportunity for participants to build on the morning session through further facilitated planning and reflection.  

     

    The host school benefits from a personalised professional development session the afternoon directly preceding the day. The local CLA Advisor liaises closely with the school principal or eLearning leader to put together a workshop that the school will find beneficial and is tailored to their specific needs.

     

    The first of these professional learning and development days will be held on 14th March at Papatoetoe Intermediate School, Auckland, and 16th March at Tauranga Boys’ College, Tauranga. The themes of collaboration, agency and inclusiveness will be woven throughout workshops which will explore:

    • Digital literacy, fluency and citizenship

    • Designing blended learning experiences

    • Leading eLearning and shifting thinking

     

    Registrations are open now for the Auckland and Tauranga workshops, and can be accessed here:

     

    These will be followed by workshops on 9th May at Paraparaumu College, Kāpiti Coast, and 11th May at St Catherine’s College, Wellington. If you would like to register your interest in attending, please do so here: core-ed.org/events/connected-learning-advisory.

    Workshop Model 2

    These are half day workshops for smaller groups working with local CLA advisors on a single key topic. The topics for these workshops have been chosen in response to queries from schools, kura, and Communities of Learning.

     

    Venues for these workshops are being finalised but the topics and dates are listed below. If you would like to register an interest to ‘save the date’ please do so here: core-ed.org/events/connected-learning-advisory and we will contact you when venues have been confirmed.

     

    Term 2 Weeks 7 & 8: Strategic Thinking Workshops

    These will be held countrywide during 12th and 22nd June. They follow up on the very successful workshops held in Term 4 2016. In the morning participants will be introduced to the Strategic Thinking Roadmap (str.connectedlearning.org.nz). The afternoon sessions will be for educators who attended in 2016 and now wish to unpack the eight planning strands. The aim is to:

    • dig more deeply into the roadmap resources

    • develop greater understanding of the reflective questions and the eight strands

    • tease out goals and actions within the school’s own context.

     

    Term 3 Weeks 2 - 5: Support for Communities of Learning

    These will be held countrywide from 31st July and will aim to provide support for CoLs as you start to appoint middle leaders. Content will be finalised as we liaise with CoLs and hear about the issues you are facing.

     

    Term 4 Weeks 4 & 5: Digital Technology & Senior Secondary Curriculum

    These will be held countrywide between 6th and 19th November. They are aimed at secondary schools and will explore the use of digital technology to enhance learning throughout the secondary curriculum. As with all our workshops, content will respond to what is top of mind for secondary school teachers and leaders.

     
  • Mā te Te Ara Whītiki e āwhina i ngā kura ki te whakauru i ngā momo hangarau ki ngā mahi akoako hei hiki i ngā putanga ako o ngā ākonga katoa.

    Te Ara Whītiki – The Ministry of Education’s Connected Learning Advisory is helping New Zealand kura make the most of the connections that digital technologies provide so they can get the best results for their students.
     
    KO WAI MĀTOU?
    In traditional times, Māori communities would connect with people who had different expertise to solve problems and chart pathways forward, thus strengthening their communities. Te Ara Whītiki – The Connected Learning Advisory draws on these ideas of connecting people and expertise in charting, discovering, and finding a pathway of learning.
     
    MAKING CONNECTIONS
    Te Ara Whītiki has a dedicated Māori medium team across Aotearoa who are available to connect with you in te reo Māori or in English. They have a deep understanding of Te Marautanga o Aotearoa and can support you to interweave digital technologies for learning to benefit all ākonga. If additional expertise is needed, the Māori medium team can bring in other regional advisors from 
    Te Ara Whītiki so that you get exactly the help you’re after. 
    How can we support kura?
    Te Ara Whītiki has already supported many kura to explore queries around:
    • digital technologies and resources that are available to support Māori learners and engage whānau and community
    • how to lead a kura through technological change and develop a strategy around the purpose of introducing devices
    • how to implement digital technologies to support modern learning practices
    • advice on purchasing laptops, tablets, and other ICT equipment.
    WORKING WITH TE ARA WHĪTIKI
     
    Recently, one of our Te Ara Whītiki Māori medium advisors connected with a kura to speak with the tumuaki to find out ways in which we could help. After reaching a shared understanding of the aspirations the whānau and community hold for their ākonga, our advisor was able to help the kura ensure that the educational potential of digital technologies was incorporated into this collective vision to achieve success for all.
    Te Ara Whītiki was also able to help the kura with strategic planning, procuring technical support, and addressing other infrastructure concerns. We will continue to work in a mentoring role with this kura over the coming months.
     
    KEEP AN EYE OUT FOR OUR NEW GUIDE
    Te Ara Whītiki is in the process of gathering stories and resources to produce a guide on supporting Māori learners with digital technologies. This guide will be available in the new year.
     
    CONTACT TE ARA WHĪTIKI
    If you have a query about integrating technology with teaching and learning, or you want to suggest a topic for this column, contact The Connected Learning Advisory on:
    Phone: 0800 700 400
     
    The Ministry of Education’s Connected Learning Advisory is managed by CORE Education.
  • tabletThe Ministry of Education’s Connected Learning Advisory is committed to supporting schools and communities as they plan for, manage and use digital technologies for learning. This month we look at the Advisory’s guide: Using digital technologies to support learning in a senior secondary context.

    The Connected Learning Advisory has recently produced the guide to showcase the ways that schools are using technology in the senior secondary years. Innovative use of digital technology to support learning in secondary education is being driven by a changing world and an emerging awareness of the importance of addressing the needs of all learners.

    This guide for schools, leaders and teachers provides ideas, resources, and stories illustrating how New Zealand secondary schools using digital technologies to extend and enhance learning in four key areas.

    Learners at the centre: Digital technologies are being used to personalise learning, support diverse learners and provide flexible and authentic options that celebrate student culture and identity.

    Curriculum design: Schools are innovating to provide a curriculum that makes the most of emerging technologies to meet the needs of their learners.

    NZCER (2013) (http://bit.ly/NZCER-report) reports that “88% of teachers worked in faculty teams that had redesigned senior courses in the last two years” (p. 29).

    Schools are providing virtual and online courses and courses that cater for student interest areas. They are developing connections between traditional subject areas with cross curricular and project based learning.

    Connecting and collaborating: Schools, teachers, and learners are building online communities and social networks to support and enrich their learning. Cloud and web based platforms are providing options for students to collaborate in new ways and access their learning anywhere, anytime and from anyplace.

    Digital assessment: Assessment is an integral part of teaching and learning so digital assessment makes sense when students are using digital technologies in their learning and vice versa. This part of the guide, developed in consultation with NZQA, outlines how technology is being used in strengths based assessment and how schools can prepare for NZQA’s move to digital assessment.

    You can find the guide on the Connected Learning Advisory website, Using digital technologies to support learning in a senior secondary context.

    Further support can be obtained by getting in touch with the Connected Learning Advisory.


    CONTACT THE CONNECTED LEARNING ADVISORY

    The Connected Learning Advisory is supporting hundreds of schools, and now also Communities of Learning, as they make strategic decisions related to learning with digital technologies.

    If you have a query about integrating technology with teaching and learning, or you want to suggest a topic for this column, contact the Connected Learning Advisory by calling 0800 700 400 or using the online form at 
    www.connectedlearning.org.nz.

    The Ministry of Education’s Connected Learning Advisory is managed by CORE Education.

  • The Ministry of Education’s Connected Learning Advisory is committed to supporting schools and communities as they plan for, manage and use digital technologies for learning. Each term the advisory runs a range of online and face-to-face events.

    CONNECTED LEARNING ADVISORY EVENTS

     

    CLA image 4Making the best use of your student data

    The Connected Learning Advisory – Te Ara Whītiki is running a series of half-day workshops throughout Term 2 covering best practice for student data and student management systems (SMS).

    The workshops are free of charge, and are being held at venues across the country. They are not intended as a substitute for SMS training from your product vendor and are not looking at particular SMS platforms. Instead, the workshops provide a broader framework of ideas to help you make the most of your chosen SMS.

    The workshops will include:

    • an overview of the SMS and its central role in any educational setting
    • planning and data management to give confidence in your understanding and analysis of data
    • using data to support teachers, learners and whānau towards better outcomes.

    Facilitators will support you to unpack and review your current practices, and consider new opportunities to harness the full capability of your SMS.

    For more information and to register for the workshops go to http://bit.ly/sms-workshop.

    A guide has been produced to support the workshops which you can find at http://bit.ly/smsguide

    Online resources

    The Connected Learning Advisory produces a number of resources including webinars and online guides. These resources are focused on key trends arising in the use of digital technologies in schools and kura. The online guides are published on the CLA website www.connectedlearning.org.nz and the webinars are advertised in the CLA VLN group http://bit.ly/cla-vln.

    A series of decision-making and ‘how-to’ guides covering a wide range of topics can be viewed at http://bit.ly/CLAguides.

    In-depth guides that have been published so far include:

    • Using social media to connect with your community http://bit.ly/cla-social. This guide offers schools starting points to support planning for, and getting started, using social media with their communities.
    • Planning for and managing 1:1 digital devices in your school http://bit.ly/cla-byod. This guide offers schools starting points and a brief roadmap to support planning for, and managing, a 1:1 digital programme.
    • The strategic thinking roadmap http://bit.ly/CLAroadmap. This guide is designed to help your leadership team implement a strategic direction that ensures technologies are integrated into a schoolwide drive for effective teaching and learning.

    The following webinars are coming up in Term 2.

    • The strategic thinking roadmap Thursday 9 June 3.45–4.45 pm. In this webinar CLA advisors Charles Newton and Viv Hall will take you through and unpack the online guide and the many resources it contains. There will be opportunity for questions about the guide to be asked and answered. Register at http://bit.ly/1rQjadS.
    • Building digital connections with your community Wednesday 29 June 3.45–4.45pm. In this webinar CLA advisors Renee Raroa, Viv Hall and panelists will explore a rationale for using digital media to connect with your community, give opportunities to explore and discuss models of how schools are communicating positively with their community, and identify ways to support your staff, students and community to explore the role of digital technologies in their daily lives. Register at http://bit.ly/1rQj71F.

    All the webinars are recorded and made available in the CLA VLN group http://bit.ly/cla-recordings.

     

    CONTACT THE CLA

    The Ministry’s Connected Learning Advisory is supporting hundreds of schools and now also Communities of Learning as they make strategic decisions related to learning with digital technologies.

    If you have a query about integrating technology with teaching and learning or you want to suggest a topic for this column, contact the Connected Learning Advisory on:

    Phone: 0800 700 400

    Online form: www.tearawhitiki.org.nz or: www.connectedlearning.org.nz.

    The Ministry of Education’s Connected Learning Advisory is managed by CORE Education.

  • CLA image 1Since early 2015, the Ministry of Education’s Connected Learning Advisory – Te Ara Whītiki (CLA) has been supporting schools and kura in their integration of digital technologies. State and state-integrated schools from around New Zealand enquire about a broad range of topics from technical infrastructure and new pedagogies, to community engagement and strategic direction. This month we explore how the advisory supported Glen Eden Primary School in their integration of digital technologies with learning.

    Glen Eden Primary School in West Auckland made an initial request early in 2015 for support around e-learning strategic planning and making decisions for choosing digital technologies.

    A new physical teaching and learning classroom was being explored as part of the Ministry funded Innovative Learning Space (ILS). The new space would allow new pedagogies to be developed further with digital technologies playing a vital role. 

    “The CLA staff helped us by leading discussions, filling in initial documents to get us started and organising visits to observe digital technologies in operation in other schools. We really appreciated the open collaborative approach that they took with us and how we were led to form our own conclusions and opinions around where we wanted to head.”

    - Donna Soljan, Principal, Glen Eden Primary School.

    FIRST STEPS

    An early facilitated face-to-face session with the CLA advisor was focused on the e-Learning Planning Framework (eLPF). The eLPF allows schools to assess their situation across five key dimensions:

    • Learning and Teaching

    • Technology and Infrastructure

    • Leadership

    • Professional Learning

    • Beyond the Classroom

    The purpose of focusing on the eLPF was to help the school identify other areas of need that they may not have considered. It also sets a starting point to revisit and reassess where the school is at in the future and see what progress has been made.
     

    EXPLORING NEW NETWORKS AND INITIATIVES

    The CLA provides encouragement and guidance to help schools to build and develop their own networks of support both locally and nationwide. A tour of two schools that were early adopters of mobile digital devices and BYOD was organised. The goals of the visits were to observe the role of digital technologies in teaching and learning and to learn of the opportunities and challenges that have arisen through their introduction.

    “It is important to see good practice to develop our own practice and increase our pedagogical knowledge. ‘What worked’ and ‘what didn’t work’ stories from other schools will help Glen Eden make less mistakes in our journey.”

     – Andrew Read, teacher.

    CHANGING LEADERSHIP

    A change in leadership in a school can slow or even halt the progress of developing and sharing learning of the use of digital technologies. In the case of Glen Eden, it was understood early on that a change in principalship would be taking place at the beginning of 2016. While there wasn’t a concern about a potential sudden change in the decisions around the use of technologies, it was recognised there was a need to plan for the change in order to keep the momentum going.

    To alleviate the concerns, the CLA advisor helped the lead teachers focus on what they could individually control in order to add value to the way the whole staff thought about using digital technologies.

    By encouraging the individual teachers to initiate their own learning and exploration with digital technologies, it increased their understanding of the value of interacting with this technology and the learners in order to improve learning outcomes. The school visits showed how the principles of effective digital technology use could apply to almost any learning context. The thinking and behaviours of the staff and students observed could be articulated to all staff at Glen Eden, with the lessons and experiences discussed within their own context.

    CONCLUSION

    The reality for many schools is that the effective use of digital technologies can seem like an isolated or ad hoc experience – maybe only a handful of teachers are exploring their potential. With the systems or a culture in place to effectively share these separate experiences across the school, the improved outcomes for students are likely to be more consistent.

    Here are some final recommendations:

    • Identify and support e-learning leaders to develop and strengthen their abilities.
    • Schedule structured time for e-learning leaders to teach and share with others.
    • Explore opportunities to connect with organisations like the CLA as a catalyst to build networks of professional learners.
    • Connect with other schools and have conversations with their teachers. It gives opportunity to see the thinking that has gone into some of the decisions around technology use.
    • Ensure that the innovation and development around increased technology use can be measured and shared within learning communities, regardless of changes in staff or leadership. Being able to demonstrate the impact of effective use of technology can improve the case for its continuation or development, so make it visible.
    • Provide opportunities for students to teach others about effective technology use within the school community and make it part of the school culture.

    CONTACT THE CONNECTED LEARNING ADVISORY

    The Connected Learning Advisory is supporting hundreds of schools, and now also Communities of Learning, as they make strategic decisions related to learning with digital technologies.

    If you have a query about integrating technology with teaching and learning, or you want to suggest a topic for this column, contact the Connected Learning Advisory on:

    Phone: 0800 700 400

    Online form: www.tearawhitiki.org.nz or: www.connectedlearning.org.nz.

    The Ministry of Education’s Connected Learning Advisory is managed by CORE Education.

  • The Ministry of Education’s Connected Learning Advisory is committed to supporting schools and clusters as they plan for, manage and use digital technologies for learning. This month we look at considerations to make when choosing an online platform for your school.

    Online Platforms - The “Why”

    The main online platforms used in New Zealand schools are Microsoft Office 365 and Google Apps for Education. Schools often ask, “Which platform should we choose?”  However, the better question might be, “Why should I choose an online platform at all?

    “Our vision is for young people who will be confident, connected, actively involved, and lifelong learners.” - The New Zealand Curriculum

    There is growing evidence to suggest that learner-centred approaches promote the development of critical thinking, problem solving, and the ability to work collaboratively with others. This is consistent with the key competencies of the New Zealand Curriculum/Te Marautanga o Aotearoa.

    In Alive in the SwampMichael Fullan and Katelyn Donnelly suggest that “technology acts as an enabler to make learning quicker, clearer and better”, and online platforms which are well-designed, intuitive and based on the needs of students and their learning will provide digital tools which are “participatory, engaging, co-creative and collaborative”.

    "Rather than using technology to do old things in new ways, it is about doing new things in new ways". - Enabling e-Learning

    The choice of platform should flow on from your vision for your learners. Consider first what you are trying to achieve for your learners, and the platform then becomes an agent of change. It prompts teachers to examine how the technology can support learning and leads to a shift in thinking about their practice. Read some of the stories on Enabling e-Learning to hear how learning has been transformed using online platforms.

    Once you have clear ideas about how the platform can support learning in your school, consider these points to support you in making your decision about which platform to choose.

    Access

    The platform should provide easy access and use of tools to aid learning and teaching for all. It needs to be engaging, adaptable, connective, and easy to access on any device at any time.

    Technical Support & Costs

    • initial technical configuration

    • how easy the platform is to initially set up

    • what on-going maintenance is necessary

    • how well the platform operates alongside and integrates with other systems such as your SMS and other software you use

    • security of data

    Platform Capabilities

    • range and suitability of software available

    • ease of collaboration

    • speed to log-in and use

    • compatibility with touch interfaces on devices for writing, drawing and annotating

    • how the platform supports all learners? e.g. read/write functionality, text to speech

    Professional Learning

    Ongoing professional development for all staff to develop their capabilities cannot be underestimated or undervalued. How can you maximise the expertise you already have in school to provide ongoing support for teachers and develop sustainability?

    Community

    Consider what other schools and Communities of Learning in your area use. How will students adapt as they move from primary to intermediate to secondary school? How easily can evidence of student learning be transferred between schools?

    School Administration

    Online platforms work across the whole school and it is important to address the needs of administrative staff too. How will your choice of platform impact on the work and professional learning needs of the finance department, office staff, caretaking staff etc? All staff need to be included in discussions and in ongoing training and support.

    Is it possible to run two platforms?

    Some schools run two systems but it requires careful thought and management from both a technical and pedagogical point of view to run them successfully. It is important to be clear what the benefits of running two platforms are. Consider how a dual system will benefit your learners and support their learning?  What are the risks involved in running two platforms?

    Adults who are comfortable with a product may find it challenging to move away from it and will need support to switch between platforms. While students can be quite adept at selecting and using the right tool for the right purpose and easily switch between platforms, too much variety can lead to confusion. This could be a barrier to learning.

    Do your research:

    • Hands on trialling with students and staff is essential

    • Talk to other schools, join the VLN discussions and read a range of reviews

    • Evaluate each platform against your chosen criteria

    • Contact the Advisory for support.

    The Ministry of Education funds a range of software packages for schools which includes Microsoft Office 365.


    Join our live webinar on 13 April 2016 at 3:45-4:45 pm with Warren Hall and Trevor Storr on Making decisions around whole school platforms. In the webinar they will discuss:
     
    • What are whole school platforms and why would a school want one?
    • Different whole school platforms available
    • How to make a decision around choosing a platform and getting started with setting it up
    • What support the CLA can offer.

    Register here>>>

     

     

  • Student Management System Workshops

    The Ministry’s Student Information Sharing Initiative (SISI) is working with the sector to resolve the challenge of easily accessing and sharing information that schools, students and caregivers need.

    Following sector feedback requesting professional learning support on the use of student management systems, the Connected Learning Advisory—Te Ara Whītiki is running a series of half-day workshops throughout Term 2 on behalf of the Ministry of Education.

    These workshops are free of charge and are being held in 30 regional locations. These workshops will be useful to senior leaders in all schools and kura, regardless of the SMS you use.

    Register for a workshop in your area >>>

     
  • The Connected Learning Advisory aims to support school leaders and e-learning leaders to integrate digital technologies into learning. While this support is primarily provided from a distance, the advisory also offers this support through a limited number of face-to-face, free, regional professional learning days in which school and e-learning leaders can come together to seek advice and build their networks.

     

    Professional Learning Days for School Leaders

    The first Connected Learning Advisory Professional Learning Days for School Leaders  took place in term 4, 2015. Over 100 school leaders and e-learning leaders attended in Whangarei, Hamilton and Christchurch for a day of collaboration, connection, challenges and personal learning.

    The focus of the day was set through a short keynote presentation by Advisory project leaders Karen Melhuish Spencer and Ray Burkhill. The takeaway message was that schools are faced with huge changes as they navigate a world in which digital technologies are used every day in every way. Digital convergence provides us with challenges as well as opportunities to re-imagine learning in schools. In New Zealand our digital ecosystem and our national curriculum afford us an opportunity to transform schools to put the learner at the heart of our organisations.   

    Breakout sessions were held during the morning. These focused on strategic planning, leading professional learning and connecting with communities. Ways of using digital technologies were modelled and leaders were provided with the opportunity to reflect on their school’s practice and share ideas. A number of themes emerged during the day:

    • We are leaders of learning, not technology
    • We need to constantly link the use of technology to the purpose and vision of our schools, as well as the curriculum
    • We need to be inclusive and collaborative.

    During the afternoon, there was time for informal discussion and planning based on questions raised by participants and arising from the breakout sessions. These conversations were fluid and touched on many areas of teaching and learning. Some leaders made the most of this time to plan together and others enjoyed support and guidance from CLA facilitators in small groups or one on one.

    Feedback from the days was overwhelmingly positive and the number of ‘what I’m going to do next’ comments from teachers was a testament to how useful they found the discussions. Comments included:

    “To leave with so many practical ideas and tools and plans makes me feel more positive about starting and continuing the process.”

    “Facilitators were knowledgeable and easy to talk to and asked relevant questions to help with specific needs.”

    “I will now be able to write up my charter annual plan with goals to implement digital technology to engage learners and improve learning.”

     

    2016 PROFESSIONAL LEARNING DAYS

    The Connected Learning Advisory is also running free Professional Learning Days in 2016. These days will take place in North Otago and Southland during term 1, Gisborne and Hawke’s Bay during term 2, and Taranaki in term 3.

    Term 1 days are:

    • Oamaru: Tuesday 5 April at Waitaki Girls’ High School
    • Gore: Thursday 7 April at Gore High School

    You can register for the Professional Learning Days by following the link from the Connected Learning Advisory website www.connectedlearning.org.nz

    Further information and discussion threads are available in the Connected Learning Advisory VLN group - One-day professional support for leaders of digital technologies: Otago & Southland.

     


    CONTACT THE CONNECTED LEARNING ADVISORY

    If you have a query about integrating technology with teaching and learning or you want to suggest a topic for this column, contact the Connected Learning Advisory on:

    Phone: 0800 700 400

    Online form: www.tearawhitiki.org.nz

    or: www.connectedlearning.org.nz

  • The Connected Learning Advisory — Te Ara Whītiki will be in Otago & Southland at the start of April to facilitate professional support days for school leaders and leaders of digital technologies. These days are being provided for free as a part of the advisory service in:

    • Oamaru - 5 April

    • Gore - 7 April

    The day will support leaders to:

    • gain a clear, pragmatic sense of next steps in their own contexts
    • model ways of professional learning
    • make connections across local schools through clusters, networks and sharing stories
    • access the CLA as a critical friend via online community spaces (VLN/Pond) and regional advisor support.

    If you would like to attend one of these days please Register here.

    During the day there are 3 breakout sessions that you can choose from:

    Strategic Leadership - A roadmap for strategic leadership of digital technologies: In this session, Charles Newton will introduce a roadmap that helps bring coherence to the challenge of ensuring effective pedagogy is driving the use of digital technologies in your school. Practical, tested strategies and plenty of opportunity for collaborative discussion will be offered. Join the discussion >>

    Preparing for BYOD/1:1 digital devicesIn this session, Tim Harper and Trevor Storr will give opportunities to explore and discuss how to prepare your school for BYOD or 1:1. You will also be introduced to the CLA's BYOD/1:1 checklist for schools. You will come away with a deeper understanding and knowledge of the prerequisites for a successful BYOD/1:1. Join the discussion >> 

    "Show us the research!" Why and how do I use digital tech in my classroom?: In this session, Ray Burkhill and Warren Hall will share evidence-based research of the effectiveness of using digital technologies for learning. The workshop will be interactive with opportunities for you to share your practice and consider "how can I plan lessons to use digital technologies effectively?" Join the discussion >>

    During the afternoon is a facilitated mentoring opportunity for leaders to discuss their current planning and strategic development regarding the use of digital technologies in school, alongside expert advisors. The aim of the session is to provide tailored support for decision-making in your school.

    There will also be an opportunity to discuss how the CLA can support IES Communities of Learning in your area.

    If you would like to attend one of these days please Register here.