Over 20 schools from across the Bay were represented by their e-learning leaders at Friday’s e-learning BOP. This network aims to support e-learning leaders so they, in-turn, can better support staff in their schools.
We kick started the day at 9am with two rounds of ‘speed geeking’ (idea stolen from Auckland’s recent unconference, thanks Fiona and Sue)
Sue Brown from Tahatai Coast then joined us via skype. Sue shared her recent experience on-board the North American Apple Bus tour. Her fabulous key-note was titled ‘From the Cave to the Mountain Top’, for 50mins Sue took us under her wing and shared highlights from her trip. A key theme that stuck out for me from Sue’s talk was the importance of not underestimating our students and how we must maximise opportunities for students to show us what they are capable of. Sue also shared how students at Carlsbad High had received international accolade for a film produced by 16 of their students who discovered the horror of the Holocaust. Check out Carlsbad High School Television here: http://www.chstv.com/
Thanks Sue, your exuberance busted out and enveloped the group, even via Skype!
Exploring ‘e-maturity’ models was next on the agenda. See my previous post for more details. We focused on the Digital Schools Self Evaluation Tool and through online questionnaire participation, gained a fair grasp of how this tool might be used back in our schools. The group’s overwhelming response was that the use of a tool like this would be very helpful to individual schools as it would provide evidence of a schools e-learning strengths and weaknesses, giving weight to desired actions.
Data gathered through the use of the Digital Schools Self Evaluation Tool was seen by some as a good foundation from which to gather more personalised information relating to the areas that had been identified as foci for development.
The alignment of focus areas with support initiatives available in New Zealand was seen as vital in adding value to this tool.
Discussions continued around strategies used to raise the e-learning competence of individual teachers, and models of e-learning teacher accreditation used in other countries were explored.
We used our new ‘e-maturity’ knowledge by attempting to gain a snapshot of our region’s strengths and weaknesses. We hoped that this information would help to inform the group of an area for focus. We made use of good old-fashioned ‘stickies’ and invited all e-learning leaders to ‘sticky’ each e-learning area to roughly indicate where they perceived their school was at. The bottom of the bar indicates lots of support was required and the top indicated lots of success in this area. This exercise served its purpose and interestingly enough ‘ICT and the Curriculum ‘came out as one of the areas requiring the most support.
Tessa Gray rolled up next and as always she delighted the group with her wit and wisdom as we explored ICTPD clusters for 2010. We examined the changes in eligibility and ex-cluster members shared their experiences.
The rest of the day was spent in unconference style. Hot topics that became workshops included:
Learning Management Systems – What, Why and Which?
Web 2.0 – podcasting, blogs and wikis
Open Source vs. Microsoft Office – Would schools be wise to be preparing for open source?
ICTPD – How can we make the grade?
Special thanks to Regan Scarfe and Vicki Coe for their enthusiasm and support in making this day a success.
Further elearning BOP dates for 2009 are:
Friday 28th August
Friday 6th November
Please register your interest by emailing me: email@example.com
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