What a week. Just a few days ago I was in Adelaide for the Australian Computers in Education Conference (ACEC). It was a crazy three days! I presented twice, and learnt so much in the other sessions I attended. People’s feedback was just wonderful. It is always nice to know that I am helping others learn and that they find what I am presenting useful. If you are interested in seeing the slides from my sessions, they are available here.
Alec Couros’s keynote was inspiring. I loved how he showed the importance of putting technology into the hands of children so that they are free to create. It really matched my own views about the importance of student creation, not just consumption, on iPads – it’s the last stage of Bloom’s taxonomy for a reason!
It was also fantastic to see all of the amazing things happening in schools around Australia. The teachers from St Andrews School were a highlight, with their open spaces and personalised learning. It really inspired me to do more with the space I am lucky enough to have access to here at Alamanda College.
Another stand out was Chantelle Morrison’s presentation on encouraging reluctant writers. I though I knew a lot of writing tools, strategies and resources, but she had lots of new ideas that I can’t wait to implement with my year 7s. A list of her writing resources are here for anyone who is interested.
I also learnt about ‘moonshot thinking’. This is a Google term, but I think has equal relevance to the classroom. Moonshot thinking to Google is the space between science fiction and reality, but in education (and EdTech) about thinking big, making everything 10 times better and thinking outside of the square. In a time of standardised testing and results-based pay for teachers, sometimes this type of thinking can get lost between the algebra bookwork and the teaching of handwriting. It is such an important aspect to inspiring students to learn, instead of just teaching them. It is definitely a thought I will try and keep with me as I head into the always-crazy Term 4.