Connections that Speak from the Heart

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I continue to be intrigued about this.

Seesaw is offering a platform for our students to really share their own voice. The voice we so often hear as teachers, in a face to face situation, is what the students think we want to hear. Now I am hearing students really talk openly about what they are wondering, what they are learning and what they think about their learning. If you have the learning visible and your students use of Seesaw is for sharing learning then you are going to hear student voice that will get you excited. I also know it gets their parents excited and when we see comments from our parents that is huge for motivation.

My students and I reflect on our learning at the end of each day. As we listen to the learning being shared, we critique each post to make sure that it is about learning. That has been a learning curve for all my students. The students don’t hesitate to delete an item that they know isn’t about learning. If I am absent from the class, the students are still posting and sharing their learning via Seesaw with their teacher. It is very rewarding to know that the students curiosity and motivation to continue with their learning is still there when I am not.

Here are year 2 students talking about their maths learning with making patterns:

https://app.seesaw.me/pages/shared_item?item_id=item.ef3762c5-f5ff-4f28-bb6c-6546fd904ea4&share_token=o5nG5ovGTWyanWtPRszHyQ&mode=embed

Here are year 2 students telling their audience about their wonderings on the story we were discussing in reading. We have since read the story and discussed the outcomes of our wonderings. There was a lot of anticipation for finding out what happens.

https://app.seesaw.me/pages/shared_item?item_id=item.6121dcf1-d8a9-418b-9981-a19f416fdf32&share_token=NP06mbnJRVylMkWHvoL7Dw&mode=embed

This was interesting to me because the students and I had been planning together what we were going to do with all our learning on being in a Positive Learning Community. In this post the student talks about what we were planning to do and also talked about the sentence type she was focusing on.

https://app.seesaw.me/pages/shared_item?item_id=item.e8b5bfcc-5cb5-4d8a-bb36-1ecef10037ad&share_token=H-JNzhFqTb-pTxFth-OMPQ&mode=embed

Planning with students is very new to me so I am interested in talking to others who are doing this. Please leave a comment or message me to share you thoughts, ideas and resources that inspires you and how you plan with your students.

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Connecting our Learners to Online Teachers

During ULearn 17 Olivia Graham and I presented in the research stream on the Grass roots project we conducted in our school, Wairakei Taupo. We also took part in the Connected Conversations panel where we streamed live to #notatulearn17 followers. You can see this panel conversation in the accompanying video. Our presentation starts at 16.10 minutes.

In our analysis we found three key themes where learners benefit from learning online:

  • Life long learning in a connected world
  • Student agency and personalisation of learning
  • Digital citizenship

What we also found were key areas that we need to work on:

We found there was a disconnect between what was happening with the children’s learning in the online classes and their face to face learning. We felt that we need to join these two educational pathways  through the student’s goal setting within our ILE using the key competencies to guide this.

We also identified the need to provide more support for students to enable them to develop their digital capability that is necessary for an online learner. We felt this could be achieved by including our Year 5s as well as Year 6s. In this way we would develop student experts who were leaders to assist those younger students learning online for the first time and develop a culture of sustainable support for learners.

Grab some popcorn and enjoy our story.  Our presentation starts at 16.10 minutes.

Return of the Reluctant Presenter

Recently my twitter handle @melaniem8 has been tweeted out regularly, due to my  part in the Connected Conversations at ULearn17.  We will be live streamed during our conversation.

Say What?

That is what I keep asking myself.

I have been missing from posting to my blog  in the last 12 months for a number of reasons.  I have a number of posts written in draft form yet to be published.

As I was getting lots of notifications on twitter, I thought I better see what is happening in there. I had a great laugh when I entered my twitter profile and clicked on my blog link which went to my last post titled ‘Presenting Sucks’. I wrote that more than a year ago.  When I read the post I realised this is all true about presenting, for me anyway, yet here I am doing it again. Not only presenting to a group in the room but being livestreamed.

Since my last post I have learnt a lot.  One of the things I have learnt is that being uncomfortable with doing something you know will benefit you and your ideas is a good thing. It means you are doing great things. Hello discomfort!

File_001 (1)That is what I am doing, getting really uncomfortable,  sharing research alongside an inspiring colleague I have the good fortune to work with. We have been given a great opportunity to do some research into how the VLNP-Virtual Learning Network Primary- impacts on our students. Our story surprised both of us and made for some excellent conversations. I believe the conversations we  have had, made the research even more empowering to both of us than if we had done it on our own. Collaboration at it’s best.

If you can’t make ULearn 2017, join the connected conversations via the twitter feed #ulearn17 and #notatulearn17.  I will also post the research into my blog once we have presented.