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HELP! How do I reply to this comment made by a staff member? Suggestions please! :)

Started by Pam Dacey 28 May 2017 11:12pm () Replies (16)

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  • Julia (View all users posts) 28 May 2017 11:45pm ()

    I had a fabulous Principal who always encouraged me to ask questions, so some options could be...

    What does 21st century skills mean to us (personally, as a school, as a community)?

    As a school, how do we currently provide opportunities for our students to develop these skills?

    In what areas do we need to improve?

    How can we work as a school / across curricula to provide opportunities for students to develop these skills?

    What evidence do we have to show our students are competent in these 21st century skills?

    Hopefully this can create some dialogue around 2st century skills, and maybe you have an expert on hand to help others provide these opportunities!

  • Pam Dacey (View all users posts) 29 May 2017 12:19am ()

    Thanks so much for these suggestions Julia :) This comment came after a session of introducing 21st Century skills and learning to our staff. Clearly some still either don't fully understand what it is or are stuck in their ways and not too interested in changing? I guess I need to convince them more clearly about the what and the why?

  • Brendon Anderson (View all users posts) 29 May 2017 7:49am ()

    Hi Pam

    Could you ask them to define/describe what 21st Skills and Teaching Practices they 'know' about?

    Could you get them to outline how these are in operation in their classroom programme?

    Yes - the why is important. When they realise the world is changing very rapidly, the skills needed to be able to function in a future world will be markedly different. Even understanding something like 'group work' is not collaboration is important and will take time for some teachers to get their head around. Mark Osborne's material is a very good reference for the Why. 

     

  • Pam Dacey (View all users posts) 29 May 2017 9:45pm ()

    Thank you so much for this Brendon. Yes I think I need to remember that this might be a huge shift in mindset for some. Others just can't see past the IT and think that's all it is. I will check out Mark Osborne's work. Thanks again :)

  • Tessa Gray (View all users posts) 29 May 2017 10:42am ()

    Hi Pam, I don’t think you’re alone, it’s a very human condition for people to react to change differently –most fear it, some embrace it, others don’t see the need or merits for change and try to resist it. I’d personally want to hear what your teacher holds dear from the past, what they fear about the future – for themselves and their students. Also what they want for their own children, mokopuna, whānau. Getting to the heart of their beliefs might help you find a way forward together.

    Wherever these conversations take you, the truth is change is inevitable and because of technological influences – unavoidable. It changes the economic, social and global landscape. We’re just not in the same world we were before. There are growing concerns for equity, poverty, employment prospects, healthy living, home ownership and the list goes on. We have increased automated services outstripping the job market, driverless cars, robots that can take metadata and process algorithms as real lawyers would, digital devices that enable doctors to perform operations from afar, scientists inventing synthetic products to replace the traditional products, ie: cow’s milk. We are literally changing the way we live everyday. Like Brendon says, it would be a travesty of justice if schools thought nothing has changed, while the rest of the world changes rapidly around us. Much like this old video of Rip van Winkle waking up and finding himself in a school.

    In 2018 we’ll see the digital technologies introduced into the curriculum, the idea being our students need essential 21st Century skills, digital literacies and have digital fluency as they (and we) enter an unknown future. I tautoko the other comments from Julia above, about the need to have conversations - about what these skills have meant to us, what they mean now and what they can look like in the future – for students AND teachers. Interestingly enough, these generic skills also reflect the kinds of jobs in skills shortage required once they leave school.

    Just as there are strategies to support teachers through change; and change management is part of effective leadership, there’s also the commitment to doing what is best for our students, so they can have their day in the sun – a different day to what we’ve known. For, teachers to make these changes in their practice, they’ll need to be able to ‘hang their hat on the known’ and have support mechanisms to scaffold new learning into the unknown. Otherwise nothing will change. (Teacher Professional Learning and Development, Helen Timperley)

  • Pam Dacey (View all users posts) 29 May 2017 10:06pm ()

    Thank you so much for all of your thought provoking words. I feel frustrated as I am one of the early adopters at my school, hence I am in charge of the Digital Team. I have attempted to lead change in my school before with the implementation of GAFE which was a rocky road due to my "charging bull" approach. I did not develop a critical mass of staff who were on board before diving in and had to spend a lot of time plugging gaps and dragging people along who were less than happy.

    This time I have opted for a slightly slower pace beginning with the theory behind the what and why of 21st century learning in hope that this might light a spark and give them a base knowledge to try to scaffold their learning. I also tried to get them to see how it fits in to what we are already doing so that they could see that it fits with our schools current journey. I wanted to create a positive atmosphere to begin our journey in to changing pedagogy. 

    Unfortunately I fear that I may have miscommunicated exactly how far down the track we are. Clearly this staff member thought that she didn't need to make changes and she was confident that she was doing all she needed to. To be fair she is a very innovative teacher who uses play based learning in her room beautifully! She is just very anti technology. She can't see how or why she could or should use IT in her room. I have a few teachers (junior school) who feel the same way. Is this ok? Are they right? I have tried to convince them or give them ideas but nothing has worked so far. Should I bother? If so, has anyone found a way that works best? I thought that I might need to personalise the PD somehow but when??? I am up to my eyeballs with work now...as are they. ARGH!!!

  • Tessa Gray (View all users posts) 30 May 2017 12:17pm ()

    Oh the old can-o-worms are open now...

    Tanya your idea about mapping out the characteristics of different learners in the school to create a graduate profile sounds like a great idea - everyone can see what they're working towards. 

    Pam your ideas about critical mass and tipping point is a valid one and reminds me of this great little animation below (originally shared by Roger Sommerville) for leading innovation and growing e-leaders in your school.

    Leading Innovation:The 3 carriage train 

    What do you think? Having an understanding, that teachers arrive at their understanding of the benefits and use of technologies at different times/stages is not new, and there are already other discussion threads (oldie but goodies) that exist on:

     

    In terms of professionalism, there are expectations that teachers will use appropriate pedagogies and resources (including technologies) that will support and enhance learning for all. I understand the practising teacher criteria is changing, but this resource from enabling e-Learning, Practising Teacher Criteria and e-learning is still relevant when creating some guidelines for accountability - which ties in well with this thread on, Appraisal, practicing teacher criteria and your e-learning goals. Teachers can identify goals with an e-learning lens as part of their teacher inquiry.

    I also thoroughly recommend reading this article and having some facilitated discussions around the implications of... Breaking news: Implementing technologies effectively in the classroom really comes down to teacher beliefs. It starts with you! 

    Teachers’ pedagogical beliefs are observed to be strong predictors of their uses of technology, especially in regards to what kinds of pedagogical beliefs teachers have. Ie teacher-centred beliefs or student-centred beliefs. Find out more in, Understanding the relationship between teachers’ pedagogical beliefs and technology use in education: a systematic review of qualitative evidence

    There are some GREAT ideas from those who have joined this community and are leading the way themselves, and you also can't go far beyond Enabling e-Learning for great ideas, resources and research. Everyone needs good critical buddies and mentors (I'm loving this thread for that reason), my one question is, are there some more formal PLD pathways, you can access to help support you in this journey Pam? 

  • Pam Dacey (View all users posts) 30 May 2017 9:24pm ()

    Hi Tessa

    Thank you so much for this feedback and the resources and suggestions. The clip illustrates my situation and feelings exactly.

    I don't currently have any PLD planned but definitely need to look in to this for myself as well as my staff. Do you have any suggestions? I will check out all of your resources also.

    I'm in the final throws of finishing Mind Lab so have been lost in the depths of my assignments for the last few months coming up for air to breathe and connect with the world every now and then. I feel like I can start to focus more intently on this process now andgear my PD and reading towards this so am very appreciative of all you ideas and links :)

     

  • Brendon Anderson (View all users posts) 29 May 2017 7:41pm ()

    And following on from Tessa's post....

    Heart surgery has changed since the first heart surgery.

    Automobiles have changed markedly over the last 100 years.

    Planes have changed!

    There are so many examples of changes in the world because of the advent of technology getting better. I for one wouldn't want my heart operated on in a way that was done in the 1950's!!!

    Education is just the same...teachers need to realise that education - learning and teaching has changed and is not just the same as what we have been doing for years. Perhaps using an analogy like these might help? Im sure heart surgeons don't say this is the way we have always done it!

  • Pam Dacey (View all users posts) 29 May 2017 10:10pm ()

    This is great! I'll definitely drop some of these analogies in to conversation. You are completely correct of course. I think I have a difficult road ahead with a few of my staff btu i must remain hopeful. I also should focus on the staff that I can get on board more easily first too so that my energies are spent more wisely. I'm hoping that once most of the staff have made the shift in pedagogy then the few who are dragging the chain might also hop on board? Crossing fingers!

  • Tanya (View all users posts) 29 May 2017 11:13pm ()

    I am currently teaching in a Y7/8 (in a full primary) and we are pretty much 1:1 devices.  We have similar issues with our junior school... I can't say that I disagree with them!  One thing we have implemented is a continuum of what a student looks like at each year level in our school, so they can see how they fit into the big picture.  We began with the Y8's and asked ourselves what does a student who leaves us after 8 years of schooling look like?  We then stepped back through each year level and made rubrics to guide the teachers. 

    Maybe if she sees where the kids are heading (the big picture and where she fits in it) she will have a reason to get on board?

  • Pam Dacey (View all users posts) 30 May 2017 12:08am ()

    What an awesome idea Tanya! We had talked abou this a while back but I like the way that your school has done it. I will definitely discuss this with my Digital Team. I think that this has excellent potential to smoothing the way forward. Thank you so much :)

  • Karen Hughes (View all users posts) 30 May 2017 3:35pm ()

    Hi Tanya - I would be interested in having a look at what you have done.  Is there any chance of sharing?  We are on the journey of developing a graduate profile for our context.  I am thinking this could be a good activity to get staff thinking about what this means.

  • Kelly Faulkner (View all users posts) 30 May 2017 1:48pm ()

    thanks, tessa, for those great links! trying to herd our staff ever onward. i also like the hospital comparison. I always say, "what if  you went to a doctor with a big problem, and he said, 'oh, i'm not using that new-fangled CAT scan thing.' how would you feel about him and the level of care you're receiving? wouldn't you expect your professional provider to be up on the most recent and available treatments?" why is education any different? (hint: it isn't!)

  • Tessa Gray (View all users posts) 31 May 2017 9:25am ()

    Hahaha Kelly, so true. Dentists now swab an anesthetic before they insert a needle. All very civilised considering back in the 1800's, they would twist, turn, pull and shatter teeth using metal rods with hooks and no anesthetic!

    I'd also say the bedside manner of a dentist has largely improved from the day they were called 'barbers', where soft skills like problem solving, team work, communication skills, collaboration and even compassion are more important than ever before.

    I really like Brendon's explanation that some of these skills need looking at with a new lens for today. ie: What does collaboration truly look like beyond cooperation and sharing of ideas?

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