Friday, 24 June 2016

Six Month Milestone

Wow, half of the year has passed already! I am already nearing the end of Term 2 of my career, it is passing by so quickly.

As part of our digital immersion for MDTA we have created an interview to reflect upon various questions. I valued this process as it provided as an opportunity for me to think about why I am here, what I have learnt and what I have overcome.

See below the full version of my reflection, later a shortened version will be available on the Manaiakalani site. For further reflections, read my blog holistically, and in the future I will have a site for my practising teacher criteria evidence too.

Apologies for my head being cut off and various jumps between clips etc, I'm still learning iMovie!

Monday, 20 June 2016

Water Safety Update

I have been super busy as of late with six million things, as I am sure every teacher can appreciate! But I still have water safety at the back of my mind and the unit development for Term 4. Please ignore my "ums" and the internet dropping out etc, this was just supposed to be an intro/update to how I envisage the unit to look. 

I did not mention that in addition to the use of the site, there will be in pool sessions. After a theory lesson around one of the topics, there will be a pool session to put what the students learn into practice. I hope this will increase student confidence of how to be safe, and how to keep others safe in, near and around the water.

Check out my site here, and let me know if you want/need any more information. I will upload my lesson plans for the theory and pool sessions later in the year!

Friday, 17 June 2016

Reflect On The Past, To Build On The Future

As we near the end of Term 2, the MDTA have the task to create an interview reflecting on our first six months as a teacher, and as a teacher part of the MDTA. We have been encouraged to think critically about our development and learning as beginning teachers and what has supported us throughout the rollarcoaster, reflect and move forward.

As we have two weeks to complete this task, I am taking considerable time to think through exactly what I have learnt, what skills and knowledge I have developed, and what my current teaching philosophy is. The questions we were provided as a template for the interview are both broad and specific at the same time, because they may have a variety of answers, but making them specific to me is difficult. I don't really know who I am as a teacher to be honest, and I don't think I will know for a long time, when I have had more experience.

However, I have been thinking a lot about the value of self reflection. Although feedback and feedforward from others is helpful for my development, I think deep down, I know in order to move forward I have to accept my successes and failures, and my strengths and weaknesses as a learner, a teacher, a colleague and a person in order to move forward. Accepting one as a learner who requires ongoing reflection, also proves to me the importance of resilience.

The above clip discusses teacher reflective practice, and how lucky I am as a teacher to have the opportunity to continually be challenged, to continually ask why and to continually progress and develop to become an even better teacher. I will be filming and editing my interview this week and at my digital immersion next Friday, watch this space!

Friday, 10 June 2016

Sharing What I See

This morning I have created my first screencast, focusing on my site in Year 9 Social Studies. A screencast is a useful way to communicate and share ideas, presentations and so on. For teachers, screencasting can be useful to share tools, lessons, units and activities other teachers have created for their learners. 

The main component of our screencast was to share with the world how we incorporate the Manaiakalani pedagogy of visible learning to create strong learner agency, through Learn, Create, Share. This is helpful for others to gain an understanding of the Manaiakalani framework, and demonstrates how it is embedded within classrooms. 

Other teachers from MDTA use their sites more frequently with their hubs, learning spaces, syndicates and so on, so if you want to learn more I would suggest visiting some of their blogs to watch their screencasts (see links on the left column of my blog).

I am busy this week developing my Water Safety unit for Term 4, and look forward to using my new knowledge of how to screencast through QuickTime Player, to share my creation. 

To learn more about screencasting, visit the Manaiakalani Digital Immersion site.

Friday, 3 June 2016

Google Class OnAir

For majority of our digital immersion Friday, the MDTA was privileged to explore the Manaiakalani Class OnAir site, created by five teachers in the cluster. One of the teachers, Matt Goodwin, joined us to discuss the process behind Class OnAir and provided us with opportunities to give feedback and feedforward for the overall site and the individual teachers.

Class OnAir is exactly what it sounds like, teachers sharing their classrooms and lessons online, for people around the world to watch. The teachers attach their lesson plans, evaluations and links to students' blogs onto their live lessons they have uploaded. The idea behind the creation of Class OnAir is to demonstrate the Learn, Create, Share pedagogy developed by Manaiakalani.

Upon reflection, I am unsure whether some of the lessons show a 100% true reflection of a classroom. There is no behaviour management, students all appear to have netbooks, and only a select few have been chosen to be filmed and write blogs. Although the OnAir depicts Learn, Create, Share beautifully, and these teachers are very brave to put themselves out there, possibly for the future the lessons may need to appear a little less fabricated. Unless of course, my lessons are a little messier than theirs, and they aren't fabricated at all! It is all well and good for me to make comments, but soon it will be me and my lessons being analysed, as we are completing a Class OnAir lesson next term! Watch this space...