Saturday, February 15, 2014

Getting on the same page February 2014

Our two day workshops at the beginning of this year had an interesting twist for me. Our school leaders stated at the end of last year that I could have 1 hour to do the 'vision stuff' as the rest of the two days they would be busy collaborating with our teachers on developing plans for personalised and project based learning.

I reflected on how far our distributed leadership in the school had come - and was excited by our leadership team's motivation and passion.

On the first day I had my precious hour of presenting the vision. This session explored the relationship between pedagogy and spaces for learning. Teachers were encouraged to reflect on their classroom environments and to have many different spaces for personalising learning in their classrooms. As we are  moving into a design stage for our school rebuild it is  important to consider  new ways of thinking about spaces for personalising learning.

The rest of the first day was spent exploring what we mean by personalising learning pedagogy - so that we have a common language and vision around our school philosophy. The leadership team presented a a series of tools that could be used for planning inquiry teaching, with a focus on personalised and project based learning. This included a matrix that linked "Blooms Taxonomy" and the key stages of inquiry and project based learning. This process was to get teachers to think about student autonomy over their learning and developing the skills for that to happen.

On the second day the teachers collaborated in their teams to develop the detail of their unit planning. They were able to utilise their new learning, build on their previous teaching experiences and develop their class learning projects with enthusiasm and passion.

This form of learning design for teachers and students is grounded in beliefs around:

  • Commitment to  personalised learning: 
  • Positive teacher-student-parent partnerships around learning
  • Feed-forward and Reflection
Our first  teacher workshops in 2014  were designed to empower teachers to get on the same page and to design next steps in planning.  "Enrich, Empower and Engage" our students in their learning in 2014.