Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Comment for Teacher #2 - Semester Assigned

Post #5

The blog on manaiakalani living local learning global was about how a "control group" was inadvertently discovered that resulted in extraordinary results as it relates to the 2007 implementation of a technology initiative in the Manaiakalani primary schools and subsequent ability of students entering 9th grade. The control group consisted of students entering 9th grade from other schools who did not have access to the technology integrated into the classroom curriculum.  The results showed such a gap in student reading and math levels that the school is now searching for a way to bridge the gap. Intense remedial instruction will be required to bring non-Manaiakalani primary students up to a level to ensure satisfactory passing rates.
I responded: What a pleasant surprise to find a control group to compare the success of program implementation! But at the same time, there is such a challenge to close the gap in achievement level. It's nice to have data supporting the successes because it gives the primary schools metrics that support continuation of the program and may give reason to expand into other areas and higher education levels. One way to address the gaps may be to create mentor pairs or groups where students from the Manaiakalani schools work with those students who weren't as lucky to be exposed to that incredible program. Great work! Do you have an update on possible plans to close the gaps?

Post #6

The blog on manaiakalani living local learning global was about how three different occasions had led her to think of the SAMR model. Once when reviewing data about their first year moving to technology use that incorporated ALL teachers and students, not just teacher leaders and volunteers. Second when an old friend asked for advise on how to engage hard to shift teachers (her advise was showing them a Google Docs application that will convert a picture of a document into a workable text document). Third was when she and a group of teachers visited other locations considered "Modern learning environments" but some of these spaces intended for collaborative groupings were set up as traditional rooms.
I had to research SAMR to understand the context of the post. Moving from a traditional classroom to a technology based classroom can be done using this model:


Substitution to Augmentation
Aumentation to Modificaiton
Modification to Redefinition

This is the first model I have been exposed to in how to implement the change of becoming a technology based classroom and I also learned about a new Google Docs feature that will be helpful at home and at work.This is the first 21 Century Skills model I have encountered.  The interactive model gives real examples for each ladder rung and is a helpful tool. I have learned two new things today because of this blog. Thank you for sharing! 

Post #7

The blog on manaiakalani living local learning global was about an annual conference called Nethui, which consists of an open forum of people who have vested interests in the internet in New Zealand. The principal from Tamaki School gave the keynote address about ReTooling School. His speech include these five things that must happen in order for schools to move into a 21st century technology based learning school:

1. A Change Pedagogy Imperative

2. Operationalising of Te Tiriti o Waitangi
3. A new partnership around Schooling
4. Technical Provision
5. Research and Development

My response is below:
I first had to research Nethui, then read the principal's keynote speech. What a wonderful, inspiring message about what can happen when schools, students and communities work together. The speech was concise, and included what is necessary to "ReTool" a school. If the rural community of Tamaki can make the transition, most places should be able to do the same, but it will take community involvement and dedicated educators to make it happen. How long, from idea to implementation did "ReTooling" take?

Post #8

The blog on manaiakalani living local learning global posted on 6/15/2013 titled Next Step: Chromebooks, detailed the recent purchase of the systems 700 Chromebooks, moving away from the ASUS devices originally purchased. Apparently parents sign a 3 year contract to pay on their devices. Some students were upgrading to the Chromebook, some were for new students to the system, but their goal was to move to a 1:1 ratio. Dorothy told of the day the Chromebooks were introduced to the students and they had an 8 minute boot where the students were the first to power them up and login the first time. Dorothy uploaded a video of this activity and it was great to see the kids with the new devices. She spoke of the need to adapt to the new devices and learning environment and spoke of extra storage via Google Cloud.
I responded: Thank you for including the video of the students of the 8 minute boot! The kids looks so excited to use a new device. The extra storage that Google Cloud provides removes some of the restrictions you would find in the classroom otherwise. Google seems to have been an invaluable partner in your school's transformation. How many years did it take to completely reach 1:1?     


  1. Kia ora Lynn, I do appreciate you taking the time to to engage in such a reflective way with your colleagues in a tiny country at the bottom of the world. I do hope that some of these gems of thinking from the 'Global Village' will resonate with you and empower you in your own teaching career. I do get to catch up with a number of the teachers training in this course and from what I have seen on your work online I do think you have a wonderful teaching career ahead of you. I do hope you consider teaching abroad because you appear to have the ability to connect with people outside of your cultural context.

    All the best, ka kite

    Auckland, NZ

    1. Dorothy,
      Thank you so much for taking the time to read and reply to my blog! It really does mean so much to me knowing I have connected to a colleague on the other side of this big world, in a beautiful but foreign land! I am inspired by the work you all are doing and the progress that has been made in your schools and communities since the beginning of your journey. Thank you for the encouraging words and I look forward to following your work in Auckland!