Ulearn Day 2

What a great day, a little tired from all the thinking I’m doing but still well worth attending the breakouts and keynote we had today. I have to take my hat off to Derek Wenmonth that stepped in and gave us a keynote at short notice. I think we need more educators who are willing to take the risks you did in your keynote this morning.

It’s always great to here from the people that are actually out there using ICT in ways that are allowing children to experience things that wouldn’t otherwise be possible. I think everyone around me enjoyed listening to the enthusiastic recount of what the Pt England children had been doing especially with the chance they had to talk with Will Smith.

Breakout 4 provided me with more challenges from Gary Stager, I wrote on my evaluation from – thank you for challenging the way I teach, I think all of us need that challenge every so often just to remind ourselves to think about why we are doing what we are doing and ensure we are able to answer that question confidently. I enjoyed Gary’s upfront manner and the ideas he put forward, I will be continuing to think about how these ides apply to my own learning and teaching and thinking about my explanation for what I am doing and why.

In breakout 5 I enjoyed hearing about Silverton Primary’s journey with their open plan school buildings and how they are ensuring the children get the best opportunities to learn. There approach to learning as projects in their Pre to 2 area seems to be working really well for them. They were kind enough to share examples of children’s planning with these projects and to make clear that this is something that the children work on through a process, it’s not a free reign the children still have that structure and explicit teaching to fall back on that helps them to enhance their project learning. I shared with other teachers from our school how Silverton structures their learning, we are very interested in this idea and will be investigating further what this might mean for Hillpark. I was really happy to hear that the journey this primary school is following is not over and is re-visited every year as well as the fact that the journey does take time, years in fact for it to actually start to come together. I think we as educators sometimes forget that big changes in our style of teaching might happen overnight, but for us to really start to use them everyday we have to give the changes time to be able to work them into every aspect of our teaching.

Conference Dinner

WOW, it was like going to a flashy product launch  lots of dancing, eating and merriment to be had by all that attended.