"Life begins at the end of your comfort zone."

~Neale Donald Walsch~

Tuesday, 23 August 2016

i On The Future

I had a great weekend at this amazing conference. A few weeks ago I attended the EdtechSA conference and presented on the Crisis of the Introvert. I'll need a whole blog post for that one. Anyway there were some strong messages that came out of this conference. As a secondary and TAFE teacher it is interesting attending conferences where the majority of the teachers are primary based. They definitely have a different way of looking at things and I am finding this quite refreshing.

For most of this year I have been designing online resources for trade courses. Whilst I love working with the tradies to develop these courses I am missing the classroom. So I need to prioritise working on a balance. I love to work with the teachers to mentor blended learning and student engagement as well as my online work. This was one of the big take-a-ways from both conferences.

Assessment


There is always a lot of emphasis on assessment in teaching. Obviously. We want to see how are students are developing in their skills and understanding. Once again Eric Mazur (@ericmazur) reminded me the importance of Blooms Taxonomy in developing skills.
It's important at times to teach new information or demonstrate a new skill but it's all the more important for students to then be able to create and apply these skills. Without the time to use these higher order thinking skills they will never have confidence to do the task well or be able to demonstrate real quality with their work.

My two favorite quotes from Eric are,
"Perfect is the enemy of done" 
"Teaching is non evasive brain surgery"

Too often students think that 90% will do. "Perfect, I'm done." There can always be improvement and reflection.

Learners need to be connected to learning

Dean Shareski (@shareski) reminded us that joy is a key component in teaching and learning. Emotionally connecting helps cement memories much more strongly than when students are empty vessels filling their brains with content.

Kevin Honeycutt (@kevinhoneycutt) inspired us with some of his projects where students have the opportunities to be entrepreneurs and make a difference. Check out the amazing GoDium project.

I love this quote from Kevin

Dan Haesler (@danhaesler) at the EdtechSA conference also highlighted the need to have learning that is going to stretch students and give them real world experiences. I love the idea of students writing proposals for real work and encouraging entrepreneurship. Freelancer is a great site where students can solve real problems and get paid to do it!

There were great conversations and many more inspiring messages however they will have to wait for another blog post. 

Until next time,

K


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