Last week was a bit of a toughy. Coming back from ulearn and Microsoft Innovative educators on a massive high and I came crashing back to earth the very first lesson back when the cows crashed, the internet was SO SO SLOW and I was desperate to share everything I had learned all at once – partly to justify me going and partly because it was so awesome.
But of course everyone wanted to just get on and get the term started. Everyone was busy with all the other things that you do get busy with, and soon so was I. I had EduIgnite to help sort on the Friday, Educampdunners on the Saturday, and all my classes to manage. As well as being a bit stunned from the travelling, not being quite sure of my next step, I had some conversations that were overwhelmingly disappointing around trying to find some direction.
But then I went to Educampdunners and got re-inspired. Some amazing people were there, and it proved to me you don’t need to spend money or get fancy titles to get great professional learning. A great group of ‘local’ people (within 4 hours drive) sharing because they want the best for education. And boy oh boy are they doing some cool things. My favs were
If you haven’t checked out Aurasma – do it, do it now. A super cool augmented reality setup, that was super super cool. colAR is also super cool, along the same thing, but you can colour in a picture, and then the avatar is in the same colouring as your picture. Really really cool for little kids.
If you are a google docs person (I’m 365) then check out Kaizena – it is a way to provide a verbal feedback to your students on their work. Really good for students who might struggle with literacy, but also a more personal approach to feedback – hearing a voice rather than reading a comment. If anyone knows of anything similar for 365 please let me know.
Or maybe I should write it…. that would be some upskilling on my part.
There was also some excellent discussion around creative commons. I am really going to have to push this at my school – we don’t have any policy in place and it is limiting my ability to share resources in places like the pond. I also think it is important just for good practice, there are occasionally blurred lines around ownership of ideas/resources/work, and having a clear guideline would be helpful.
And after all the educamp goodness, I took Sunday off. Had a day in the sun with the boys. And it was great.
And today at school was much better. I did a short snap shot presentation about some of the things OneNote could do at staff meeting and people were impressed. It was short and sweet, but generated lots of thoughtful and useful questions. And several people are coming to see me for some help getting started, hopefully it will grow from there. I tried to be positive/understanding around some of the barriers that are still in place, tried to be cheeky rather than mean about some of the on going issues (have been asking since March to get access to make a OneSite, and am still locked out) and got some of the senior leaders interested.
So the frustrations are still there, but I remembered to see the positives too. Things will change, and if I am going to help I need to not get bogged down by things are I can’t change (yet) and focus on the things I can
Have a great week all