“One world, Many voices.”

Thanks to Siromani for this tweet that gave me such a great opening for this post.

Last night I was privileged to host a #GlobalClassroom chat session with Julia Skinner.

Our topic was inspired by a blog post from Edna SacksonEdna wrote about culture and used the analogy of an iceberg.

The discussion was fast paced over the hour and I was thankful to Michael Graffin for creating a list of questions to help guide the discussion.

I was particularly interested in hosting the session as I wanted to clarify my own thoughts about culture as this is our topic for Newmarket School. The first step in teaching a new topic is to define the term with the children. I already had two sessions with the children and we had begun to make links with what they knew about culture. As my own knowledge was not as clear as it could be I was excited to learn from the discussion. I took time to ponder the various statements by going back over the chat via the storify created by Marnel. So this is what I have created for my definition. Thanks to all of you who took part as I have taken parts of the discussion to help frame my thoughts. Thanks to to Clive Elsmore who creates an archive of all the chats as it was great to trawl the following chats for their gems too.

My definition of culture.
Culture is an iceberg. Above the water we can see national costumes, physical appearances, tattoos and body adornments, food and hairstyles. We can hear language and music. We can smell scents such as spices, food smells and nature smells including the different flower scents. We can taste foods that are sweet, spicy, salty, hard and soft. Below the surface we can feel joy, sadness, excitement, love and respect.

Above the surface is the difference between us all. Below the surface is what joins us together as part of the  human race. Our feelings is what makes us human. It is our treatment of the differences above the surface. Culture is our way of living. It is the beliefs and values of a group of people. It is the beliefs, values and traditions that we practise and celebrate in our daily lives. It is the core values that we all have in common such as respect, trust. beliefs, kindness and love. I think as families and individuals we evolve our own cultural practice to reflect how we are validated or what we learn. Learning about culture is important to accept the reality. “One world, Many voices.” It is about treating those differences that above the iceberg with actions of dignity and respect. It is about communication and being transparent with communication.

Where to next, this week I will be reworking our class draft definition and I can see how I am moving to creating a definition of culture from our school perspective. So again, I can see how I would use the above the iceberg to what we can see in schools as a difference between schools and what happens below the iceberg as a commonality we have with all our children in schools.

Finally, when I frame learning using SOLO taxonomy I use my SOLO mentor Ginny who I go to for feedback. Ginny has suggested I include way of life too and how culture is passed between generations. Therefore the idea from Siromani of ‘One world, many voices’ surmises this. Again Ginny’s feedback suggests turning my thinking upside down and begin with whats under the iceberg and use that to give examples of what is above the iceberg. Those of you who were with us last night, what definition of culture did you come up with?

Follow up, I was interested to see Dr Kofoed, my school principal include this statement as part of our teacher appraisal.
‘To enhance the relevance of new learning, in 2014 teachers will include:
developing classrooms as high-trust environments, where the teacher affirms and validates the culture and identity of each student.’ Love it.

Apple Configurator

Here I am again working with configurator. At this stage of my learning I think that I am at relational because I am starting to experiment with the settings.

There are three profile that can happen with configurator.
1) locked down for the children. Eg: you cannot get the photos off the iPad by USB to a computer.
– to get images off, either set up a student email and these can be emailed to the teacher in groups of 5, or use a class dropbox account and the iPads automatically sync to icloud.
When the apps and system requires updating then the iPads are synced to configurator. teachers cannot automatically do this task.
2) the VPP apps can be installed and the iPad not supervised. Therefore the teacher can add their own iTunes account over the top and the apps stay with the iPad. But this is not really a safe option for children’s use.
3) teachers are given VPP codes and these belong to the teachers iTunes account, so when the teachers leave the apps go with them. We could also use this system with our children. So families would buy a group of apps as part of stationary. 
So where to if we allowed BYO iPad.
I think that the easiest option is for the children to purchase the required apps. The parents set up the iTunes account therefore they manage updates etc.
We could configure with settings that did not allow FaceTime, messaging, YouTube. 
Kids blog would allow the children to share their learning yet would not require an email. We are always thinking about our learner’s well being.
My next steps is to set up accounts within accounts. In addition I am not quite confident to add the apps back to configurator but I am certainly more at ease with what I am doing. 

iPad

Our journey with iPads


2011, we allowed a small trial number of children to bring their mobile devices to school.Our prerequisite was that they must have their cybersafety badge on Superclubsplus and they must have earned their gold star for technical skills.We also had parental permission. We began with 3x children. One had an iPad, one had a laptop, one had a PSP console. I collected the ISP number from their devices. What we found out……The ipad user had a personal iTunes account set up by their parent, however our user was under 13 and stated in the terms of agreement with iTunes, this should not be allowed. In addition they had a personal email address that they used.Therefore they could download apps as they wanted them and did until we intervened.Because the iPad logged on easily to the network, the device was used during break times. They sometimes allowed their friends to use them. The skills developed for the Superclubsplus cybersafety certificate were not adhered to and the student was reminded about the implications of sharing a personal device. 

Lesson: Who has the right to put on a set of apps for an iPad? Is it ours or the parents? If children bring their own, do we demand that they have a school set of apps and not others? Do we have the right to ask this of a personal device? Who is using the device at home? What happens if a parent or older sibling uses the device and communicates to our children as the device owner? What happens if inappropriate apps are loaded onto the device? Should we have times on the wifi where children cannot have access? The laptop, was not as easy to access the wireless. It kept falling off. The PSP console, could see the wireless, but was not easy to hold onto. 

2012, we were snupped and we developed a system of passwords for visitors. But that was not easy, until I had a technical lesson later in the year. After that, I was able to set up visitors with their temporary passcodes. We locked down student access to certain hours. Superclubsplus was going through changes and the children were not as enthusiastic with it. We did not encourage devices to be brought to school, but did not discourage it either. We had one student request access for learning reasons. Her parents had set up her account on a dedicated programme, but often she could not get on because someone else had set up her online account and I could not help her. What about devices that are internet capable that are brought to school. Eg: smart phones with internet accounts and the children take photos of their peers and teachers and upload them to a social media account. We gave each teacher an iPad and found that they added their own iTunes account and then let the children have access to the device. 

Lesson,1)Learning need students accounts need to be set up by the school, not the parent. 2)Ruling about bringing a smart phone to school and used inappropriately during school hours. 3) Any visitors to be added to a temporary account and not to our teacher WIFI. 4) Teachers allowing chn use of a teacher tablet because they wanted to see how children used them. Because I had been through some training as a global online mediator with Superclubsplus, I began reading around the subject of legalities and children accessing the internet. I read widely around this area and attended Nethui where I was exposed to further discussion around legalities. I continued to find my own learning exploding. Twitter was my main source of connection, reading and learning. The more I read the more cautious I became. I also became interested in not just the learning with mobile technology but the implications. One starting to come through is that todays youth are not getting the required amount of sleep. Therefore sleep patterns are being affected. My investigation as an efellow highlighted the importance of collaboration and making connections. I was forced to face the fact that I often hide behind electronic communication and needed to balance that with face to face sharing. So moving out of my comfort zone I presented at a variety events. This included TeachMeet, Ignite Leadership and at our area ESOL cluster.  I also attended educamp and padcamp. I collaborated on a global project with one of our teachers.



2013Back at school, we called back all the teacher iPads and found out how much they had been used. From our findings, not as much as we had hoped. Really most of the apps we identified were from the principal and myself, with a few others from individual teachers. We invested in configurator because children safety was our top priority. We brought in Allanah King to share with us how she used iPads with her students. We identified a set of aps that would be standard on all student ipads. There is still discussion about the relevance of this but we will sort it out as we learn from this experience. From this, teachers were enthusiastic and asked for their iPads back, so we bought a new set for them. Again we will use this year as a learning year. The one rule we gave teachers was that students were not to use their teaching iPad. Just like they must not use their TELA laptop. They were to use this tool as a learning opportunity. Already one error on my part was adding youtube to the student iPad. I was thinking from teacher access. Again terms of agreement state that under 13 must not access youtube. So that will be removed the next time I work with configurator.  

Lesson1) Some websites do strange things with iPads. Eg: we had challenges with reading eggs and skoodle. Wikispaces looks very different. Therefore we are identifying tools that we can use with the children, that are safe but also can be used on the iPad. The terms of agreement in configurator identified ages for the apps to use. This helped immensely. I identified that any app with social media connections was not an appropriate app to add. Our top findings was if an account does not require student email, it was reasonably safe. If an account asked for school verification for a teacher account, then it was reasonably safe. Eg: Myportfolio, kidblog, reading eggs are safe. Accounts not safe, include wikispaces, club penguin, youtube, prezi. They all require permission for 14- 18. There is nothing stated for under. Or it said that educators take ownership and responsibility for the use of these. We have already learnt of the volume of access with our work with Superclubsplus so unless the teacher is on the environment 24/7 -caution is needed. We purchased and distributed apple TV’s to the 6 targeted classes. This was to any remaining classes without a smart board. Smart board classes had a VGA connection purchased for the teacher’s iPad. The initial observation included teachers sharing photos of learning. We hope to see this grow into children sharing their learning.


Lessons

  1. Ensuring that teachers used appropriate sites with our children legally.
  2. Teachers using appropriate apps with our children and have a purposeful learning intention.
  3. Continue to observe and investigate what other primary schools do in regards to mobile learning. eg: Just because you can does not mean that you should.
  4. Create our policy around the use of devices with children.
  5. Continue with professional development in the use of mobile technology for our teachers.
  6. Continue to learn about online learning spaces.

            Do you use iPads at your school? What learning have you uncovered?

            Make memories and share stories

            Last year I shared our story of using the HOT seat forum with our staff at a staff meeting.

            Just before the term 3 holidays, I presented at Edugnite Leadership and shared our story with Auckland teachers of using a HOT seat forum on Superclubsplus.
            Then our story was shared via TKI on the snapshot for learning.
            Soon after that I re-shared our story globally of using Global HOT seats with TeachMeetINT where I was one of 24 educators from 16 countries sharing using Adobe connect.
            Now my next step is to increase that circle to a greater audience by resharing this story via my blog and then using twitter to broadcast to an even greater audience.
            Where to next, I plan to continue sharing our story when I travel to European countries as part of a TEACHNZ sabbatical in 2013. I plan to make links with other Global educators of primary school children.
            Before Ulearn. I attended Pasi Sahlsberg’s session for school leaders. He spoke about the Finnish Education System and why he thought they are placed top in the world for education. He shared his views on equity in education. He shared his ideas about GERM. I made connections with Pasi on twitter so was excited to hear him speak face to face and to hear his stories about his home country. One key connection I made to his story was the importance of first language for accademic success. Here you can download an article I co-authored regarding the importance of first language.
            The day before Ulearn12, I attended #GAFENZ. This was the Google apps for education New Zealand Summit. Here I heard educators share their stories on using Google for learning. I made connections with educators who used Google Hangouts but do not think we will be using that with our primary school children. However there is nothing stopping us as teachers using it to share our stories with each other.
            At ULEARN 2012, each of the plenaries shared a photo from their school days and shared memories of teachers who influenced them.
            Therefore as part of this blog I have located my photo taken in 1972 or 40 years ago. I was a pupil at St Mary’s Savalalo in Apia Western Samoa. My teacher was Miss Laulu. I was one of 42 pupils in standard 2. This was my last year before we shifted to New Zealand. I have that story here on my wiki. I have been in New Zealand now for just over 40 years yet I still call Samoa home. I am nostalgic when I think of Samoa. Which pupil is me? Surely you can guess? Yes I was as fluent in Samoan as I am now. My story on my wiki was the closing plenary presentation for Fagasa in 2002. Yes I shared my story in Samoan

            Ulearn12 provided me with opportunities to making connections to some of the stories I heard. Most people will share connections from the plenaries. You can read all about the plenaries messages here in the shared Google docs.
            However for me, the highlights included making connections with the 2013 efellows and introducing them to the coreefellows wikispace. In addition when I attend Ulearn I try and attend any Pasifika or Maori teachers sessions. This year this included Janelle Riki, Moana Timoko, Anaru White, and Togi Lemanu who shared blended elearning for Māori and Pasifika Students. They spoke about the importance of pedagogy. I especially made connections with Moana as she spoke about BROfessionalism. I also listened to Togi share his story about Pasifika Learners and the blended model that he used.
            I was also privileged to listen to some stunning teachers share their learning.
            These included Mary Rahiti and Tania Lako from Sutton Park speaking about Flashing Flipcharts.
            I sat in on Tupou Kolo’ofa’i sharing how she uses an active board when teaching the arts.
            Other stories included @arti_choke aka Pam Hook sharing about SOLOtaxonomy. 
            I would have liked to hear more about the ROW and other global projects. 
            I also would have liked to have heard Simon Evans Software for Learning presentation where he shared about our Skoodle Project.
            I attended the launch of the Digital Citizenship project launched at the National Library. Already I have begun contributing to this collaborative project.
            What ULEARN did for me was to remind me of others and to continue mentoring our teachers in the use of the tools with learning. I am conscious of the space between the nodes concept or as Moana called it BROfessionalism. I also wish to mentor a group of students as they prepare for a Global sharing. From Ulearn I have made contact with other New Zealand Global educators who have been part of collaborative work between countries and primary school children.
            My aim is to coordinate a TeachMeet session here in New Zealand using Google hang-outs.

            One word I took away from Ulearn was Ubiquitous computing. This is like the Internet of Things. This is machines that fit the human environment instead of forcing humans to enter theirs. 

            The message that I take back for my school is ‘its no longer enough to do powerful work if no one sees it.’ Therefore create content to share your stories with other educators.

            So where are your stories?

            How young is too young to have an email?

            (Cross posted on myportfolio.)

            In New Zealand 18 years old is the ages to enter into a legal contract

            Here you can read the legal age in New Zealand for a variety of activities.http://www.newzealandatoz.com/index.php/page/display/653/

            Youth is classed as 14- 18 and parents can sign a legal contract on their behalf.  But what happens if the children are younger?

            http://galesburgcusd205.schools.officelive.com/Documents/6%20Guidelines%20for%20Safe%20Use%20of%20Internet%20Resources.pdfI have been reading around the legalities for nearly a year. The above document highlights the importance of monitoring all online activity when children are involved.

            I have been using Superclubsplus with children for 18 months now and am continuously astounded at the amount of activity taking place. I like Superclubsplus because as an educator I like knowing that I am not alone in monitoring my children online. Someone else is there too and the system monitoring activity is continuously evolving and adapting with our online users.

            In New Zealand the secondary schools are advised to have robust systems in place when using the internet for teaching and learning.

            http://www.educationalleaders.govt.nz/Problem-solving/Education-and-the-law/Governance/Schools-and-the-Internet

            WebsafetyNZ writes about the morals of children under 13 lying to use social media tools. Yet we teach children not to share too much personal information about themselves.

            http://blog.websafety.co.nz/2011/02/underage-facebook-users.html

            From ACMA Australia, this clip has a section regarding cyberbullying and also has data about Social Media under age users. The numbers are challenging in that we underestimate what under 13 year olds do online with or without parental permission.

            http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JHj0gKGYzfY&feature=youtu.be

            http://www.inspiration.com/blog/2011/02/web-safety-comes-first-when-teaching-media-literacy/

            I use this statement as a framework for working with teachers and children. Web safety comes first when using the internet for teaching and learning.

            USA has COPPA for under 13 year olds. COPPA stands for ‘The Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act.’ Read all about what that means when working with children online.

            In New Zealand – we do not yet have anything like COPPA  in place.

            Until this changes then New Zealand follows the legal binding contract between 2 parties or a signed parental agreement for youth. 14-18.

            Under 14- the area is still grey.

            Hence how can it stand up in court if anything goes wrong?

            One statement I continually make is just because we can – does it mean we should? I read with interest the changes that have taken place even in Googles Terms of Agreement regarding Google APPS for Education. This agreement is outside their Terms of Agreement with the general public. Therfore schools would be signing a separate agreement with google, and their parents signing a separate agreement allowing their children to use the APPS available for education.

            Those of us teaching in the under 13 age group when do you think is a good age for children to have their own email account and how much freedom do you think they should have? That is a question I still cannot answer. Our children have a locked down email on SCP. It is so locked down that they are not allowed to use it to contact parents as most parents have not been police vetted. They can only use it in a walled environment to communicate with children or teachers from their own schools.

            Finally, we continuously focus on what we do with our children. But how many of us are in schools where all teachers know what google docs and apps are and even more exciting – how many of them use docs and apps for teaching and learning? How many schools run teacher cybersafety training alongside their other professional learning?

            Reflecting using SOLO taxonomy, my thinking is still at multistructural as my learning in this area is still new and most of what I have is a list of websites as I have been reading around the subject of children and the internet. I am just starting to make links with other educators in my ideas.

            I welcome any comments and any further information that other educators have on the subject about teachers and children using the internet for teaching and learning.