Learning 2 Pre Conference

Beyond 1:1 Pedagogy Leading Change with Mark Dilworth

Day 1 @ Learning2 was a great start. mark helped lead us in some discussion around how to make/think about/drive changes in a school.

Take away #1:

While the focus of this session sounds like it would be about tech, the reality is that the tech is only a small element.  The driving forces is the question “What educational goals do you want to achieve?” Then long after that is decided, “What tools will help us achieve this?”

Take away #2:

Another take away that I had was how ZIS (Zurich International School) included teachers in this discussion.  We learned about how they made teacher’s input, all teacher’s input, part of the process. This helps answer the question of “who owns these decisions?” I can already see how this technique in my school would help the process. There is already a bit of a history of “…brought in the BYOD” or “… brought in this piece of tech.” Not “We decided that … tech is the best option for our school.” Not including teachers in the decision gives them the permission to “blame” someone else for issues that arise.

Take away #3:

Something that I am not sure was considered, was student’s voice in these decisions. Were student’s voices given any weight? Were students involved in any way? How can they be involved in the future beyond taking a survey?

Take away #4:

How do we measure the success of our programs? How do we know if we are helping students learn? How do we find out what was improved, changed, or not changed?

Take away #5:

A need for a few teachers to have some basic training in how to facilitate these input sessions. So that large groups of teachers stay on task and on topic and work as a functioning unit in helping with these decisions. This will lessen the off task behavior that teachers are really good at during these types of meetings!

Take away #6:

One of the things that ZIS did was begin to use Bloom’s Taxonomy when discussing tech to move the conversation away from “How good is the tech?” and towards “How good is the learning?” This changes the conversation and redirects the focus. I know that this idea is what my principal has been leading me towards and it was something that I was hoping to get out of this session. I think now I can use this idea to move forward towards helping lead teachers away from conversations like “We want you to teach … tech.” and towards “We want to to achieve this type of learning with tech.”

Take away #7:

Something else that came up was the idea that adding tech elements to the teacher appraisal conversation is more about asking teachers how and where they are growing as professionals and less about judgements. This is a great way to focus the conversation around evaluations and one that I realize has been my own personal view point about tech learning for teachers. One of my goals has always been to help teachers grow as professionals when I teach. This is possibly why I have never stressed as much as I see other teachers about evaluations and observations. I am excited about growth. Growth drives me to learn new things and expand my knowledge base. Growth allows me to build my confidence in my ability to learn.

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