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Showing posts from December, 2015

One Degree Makes A Significant Difference - The Educators Winning Edge

In the days when I was working full time coaching high performance gymsports and outdoor education I was exposed to a philosophy of success. At the time it felt a little airy fairy as it did not give specific details on the 'how' to be successful but it did help guide my goal to be a great educator.

It was known as the winners edge - based on the idea that the slightest edge creates remarkable rewards! For example, a horse that wins a race by a nose is a split second faster than the horse that is placed second yet the winning horse receives considerably more. Though I am not a gambling man, we saw this in the 2011 Melbourne Cup whenDunaden won $3.6 million the second place getter Red Cadeaux earned $900000. Similarly, small improvement or changes in what we do can make a significant impact on our lives and the lives of our students.

Let's be straight: the definition of insanity is doing the same things we have always done expecting a different result. Unfortunately, withou…

2015 Tech Year in Review

The following has been borrowed from my end of year post last year as it still remains appropriate. "The one guaranteed constant in educational technology is change, and the pace of that change is definitely accelerating. So as we approach the New Year I thought it a virtuous time to reflect on this year's development in the use of technology at my school."
The biggest shift I have seen with the use of technology had been a pedagogical one. I have begun to find teachers have moved away from asking about how to use specific programs, apps and hardware to focusing on this is what I want to teach what tools are out there to enhance the learning desired. This has included coding, makerspaces, video conferences and mystery locations. I have found a major shift towards teaching genres of programs eg word processing and presentation rather than 'word' and 'powerpoint'. I believe that this has been driven by a greater reliance on cloud based computing.
This year…

Good vs Great Education - The Difference is in the Personal Touch

I am currently in my second week of my Summer break and this morning I have been blessed with insightful pedagogical conversation.

The first came as a chance meeting with my daughter's school principal prompted by a forgotten outfit for a dress rehearsal. Immersed in end of year rehearsals, presentation preparation and school placements for next year I was given the gift of time to engage with her about the action research that the school had been conducting to promote best practice. As a professional I was encouraged to hear that many of the practices that are trending in current classrooms had been instilled in the culture of the school through teacher research. She added that due to the teachers action research they saw these classroom practices embedded well before they started trending in the mainstream. Examples she gave were Coding, Hattie's Mind Frames for Learning, Environmental Education, Instructional Rounds and Video Analysis. It was seen that this research informe…