Saturday, 11 October 2014

My Day, My Way - the next challenge.

The Friday before Term 4 started we held My Day, My Way (an Educamp style learning format). This was a new experience for most people but by the end everyone had enjoyed an engaging day of professional development and picked up lots of new pathways to explore in their classrooms and professional practice.

Many great ideas were shared (see the smackdown slideshow) and questions asked (see the Google notes here). I've gone through the notes and turned all of the websites or apps into actual links, so you don't need to struggle with looking for the same websites.

This post is to summarise some of the learning and set the HNS staff with the next path on their journey.

It appeared that there were a couple of real highlights of the day, Wordclouds and interactive reading being two big favourites. My favourite wordcloud website is Tagxedo, but I think that ABCya Wordcloud is really user friendly as well. A couple of teachers asked for another iPad session on interactive books, so I'll only mention my favourite Mr Morris Lessmore's Flying Books, which I posted about on my own blog here.

I thought it was great to see a few people making notes about Connected Learning Month, there are still heaps of awesome events coming up throughout October. If there is something that you'd like to participate in, I'm more than willing to help facilitate your journey there.

So where to from here? Engaging with professional development doesn't just mean attending a course/session/seminar. True engagement comes when you take these ideas, experiment with them in your classroom or they may even transform some of your practice. So the challenge is to take the next step and put an idea into your classroom.

Make sure you take some photos, write some notes or get someone to critique you on the way you've experimented with a new teaching tool.

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

My Day, My Way

When: Friday October 10th, 9am.
Where: Henderson North School
Who: All Henderson North Staff
What: A day of learning centred on new ideas, old ideas that you've remixed and things you want to find out about. This day isn't just going to focus on technology, it is about renewal, modification and innovation.

"My Day, My Way" is going to be based on the EduCamp format which has provided tailored PD for teachers throughout NZ, topics are planned on the day based on what attendees want to learn about or share. To get these discussions moving we are going to start the day off with a quick snapshot of many ideas that we will all provide - this is called a Smackdown.

Make sure you add at least 1 idea to the Smackdown slideshow, all you need to do is click on the Google Slides logo and it will allow you to edit the slideshow. If everyone adds 1 idea we'll have heaps of awesome things to share on the day.

9 - 10am: Smackdown
10.00 - 10.30: Morning Tea
10.30 - 11.15: Stream 1 - choose what you want to learn - it's about you. (Staffroom, Rm 1 & Rm 2)
11.15 - 12.00: Stream 2 - choose what you want to learn - it's about you. (Staffroom, Rm 1 & Rm 2)
12.00 - 12.30: Drop Box with Leandro, Reid & James.

12.30 - 1.15: Lunchtime

1.15 - 2.00: Stream 3 - choose what you want to learn - it's about you. (Staffroom, Rm 1 & Rm 2)
2.00 - 2.30: Wrap up
2.30 - Hometime or burning questions

"My Day, My Way" is an excellent opportunity for you to spend time with your colleagues and get some valuable conversation time to discuss new ideas, questions or problems you are having.

When you know that you are attending please fill in this form below.

Tuesday, 3 June 2014

Creating a QR Code

In our first ICT PD session we concentrated on creating QR codes.

QR codes stand for Quick Response codes and they are a quick and effective way to share information with other teachers, parents, children or anyone else within the school community. For the uninitiated a QR code looks like this:
You can scan this using a QR code reader on a device to
 find one of my favourite  web tools to use in the classroom.

During the PD session we discussed some ways that QR codes could be used which includes:

  1. Treasure Hunts.
  2. Internet sites that you want your class to visit. 
  3. Links to YouTube videos that you want to share. 
  4. Shortcuts for junior learners when typing websites is going to be time consuming. 

There are plenty of other ways to use QR codes though and you can find all sorts of ideas on the Internet.

There are heaps of websites to help you create QR codes. I prefer to use the website QR Code Generator and this video will help you create a code if you have some trouble remembering how we showed you, or if you have not made one before.

Once you are starting to become familiar with creating QR codes and want to build something a little different, try QR Voice which is shown below.

Good luck creating your QR codes and don't forget to share your success with the rest of the staff at Henderson North School.