EducampAkl is amazing professional learning for teachers. This years session was coordinated by Fiona Grant and team. The hosting school was Tamaki college so we got the chance to see inside a different school.

The incredible part is that it is free and you have the opportunity to find out more about a burning question or issue that has been a little difficult to answer. You spend a day on your own professional learning and learn about edu stuff that you want to know more about. Technically the day is about you as a learner. You say what you want to learn and someone helps you learn it. I was really excited to have Belinda and Waveney join me from Newmarket School so they could see what I rave on about every year.


Saturday 25th of July was fabulous and I got to meet and make connections with lots of new people and reconnect with many virtual acquaintances. One reason I attend #educampakl sessions is to put the face behind the twitter handle.


During the SmackDown educators are given the opportunity to share. You can access the slides from here with link,


Photo by Fiona

I shared the upcoming #edchatnz project that I created to bring teachers together for virtual collaboration. Therefore free PD in your PJ’s.

#EduCampAKL Smackdown 2015 (1)

I shared about a twitter app called Periscope that has the facility to live stream. I have added a summary to my slide and embedded the short demonstration clip I took during Fiona Grant’s introduction.

#EduCampAKL Smackdown 2015

Today I attended sessions by @lenva @tanya @gmacmanus @codingpoet.



Gerard spent time with me and a few other visiting Pond. One of my burning questions was how easy would it be to set up a Newmarket School group in the POND. He showed us how to activate the Geo map and see our teachers and I really like this image that was generated in regards to Newmarket School.


I had another lesson in curating and sharing content.  He was patient and awesome but I still had the feeling that our teachers have when they work with me and tell me you are going too fast. POND as a tool is amazing and I will continue to put in some hours to learn it because it is worth it.

Hapara Workspace


Lenva from Hapara covered Hapara Workspace. The workspace comes live on Monday.

I believe we should upgrade our package to include Hapara interact. This costs a little extra on the package and is something I will recommend we do for when we renew our license as this will allows us to help keep our students safer. We already love Hapara and the extra facility will support teachers in their work too. Anything that helps our children and teachers is worth a little extra.


I called together any presenters who have been on TeachMeetNZ to come for an obligatory photo, the task was like trying to herd puppies, so in the end I created a montage. Even then I still missed James. The exciting part of Educamps is meeting up again and having a bit of a catch up. I pulled in Fiona too to this one because she is presenting on the TMSydney combined with TeachMeetNZ in October. Here they all are so do follow them on twitter.



Photos by Waveney and Justine

I give a shoutout here for the upcoming Virtual Learning Network Webinair ‘Personalising PLD using social networks’. So pop along and register. I will be sharing TeachMeetNZ and Danielle Myburgh is sharing Edchatnz.

When: 15:45 – 16:45, 12 Aug 2015

Venue: Adobe Connect

Blogging for Educators

Tanya was running a session so I popped in and had a listen. I ninjaed her notes.


Image by Tanya

You can also find a fabulous list of New Zealand educator blogs here. You can also add yours if it is not there.

Configurator and Meraki.


Image by Tanya

After Tanya, I listened to Clinton sharing about Configurator and Meraki. I really like the way he speaks, as in the practicalities and how to save school money. I have found configurator a real challenge especially with purchased apps. When a teacher asks me about adding new apps to the system I now totally ignore them. However from now one I will put across to them to trial the app first on their teacher iPad using their class budget to buy the app, test it with a group of students and then write me a proposal of the value of purchasing the app for the ipads. If they can be bothered to do all that, then I can be bothered to spend hours fighting configurator to install it.   The last holidays I just could not face spending another full week updating the system. There must be a better way. I wonder if there are schools who could do with a refresher and together we fly him up for a day’s training. Clinton said that he would create self help videos so I look forward to those. Again notes are from Tanya. I also found out that iPad 2 system charges for apple apps but these are given with later models.  Clinton also cautioned against giving children printing rights on a chrome. I agree with him. I still cannot understand teachers who want children to be able to print from the chrome. As we move more and more digital, are they not aware that the doc can be shared?


  • Learning with teachers from Newmarket School.
  • Catching up with TeachMeetNZ presenters.
  • Connecting with others watching the twitterstream.
  • Building my own learning.
  • Finishing off with pizzas and drinks from Network4Learning.

Reading other attendee reflections such as 

TeachMeetNZ 2015 Session 2

Another fabulous session of TeachMeetNZ has passed. On the live hangout we had eight presenters from around New Zealand.

Session Host: Sonya Van Schaijik

TimeKeeper: Virginia Kung 

Broadcaster and Storify: Monika Kern tuning in from Melbourne.

Screen Shot 2015-07-15 at 10.37.41 pm

Country Presenters Name Topic Twitter Google+
1 NZ Stuart Kelly #NCEADigitalEnglish @stuartkellynz +StuartKelly
2 NZ Natasha Walden My Experience as a Gamer @MissnWalden +MissNWalden
3 NZ Steven de Bruin Developing agency in the early years @Steven_de_Bruin +SteveDeBruin
4 NZ Terry Beech Design Collaboration @beechEdesignz +TerryBeech
5 NZ Adam Baker Star Wars,the comic strikes back @AdamBaker31 +AdamBaker
6 NZ Kerri Thompson #NZreadaloud @kerriattamatea +KerriThompson
7 NZ Shona Poppe Creating an inclusive classroom @shonapoppe +ShonaPoppe
8 NZ Rachel Chisnall ‘Bravery’ in your teaching @ibpossum +RachelChisnall

The celebration is over and I now look forward to the educators reflections about the process.

I know that this is when the real learning happens. There is also an evaluation form to complete and this helps drives the next session.

Presenters can add digital badges and a digital certificate to add to their reflection.

Now that the session is over I still need to clip videos and add them to the wikipages. Then I will add the pages to the Pinterest list. If you were a presenter and are visiting thank you again for taking part.

I give a shout out here to Monika Kern who did a fabulous job with broadcasting. We trended on twitter so that was really exciting and I give a shout out here to all the teachers who joined in on the session virtually. Thank you because having an active audience really helps make the session. Monika created a storify of the session.

I also acknowledge Virginia Kung from Newmarket School. She is our assistant principal and for this session she agreed to be timekeeper. She gave feedback and covered for me when I stepped away at the start of the session to collect the team.

Where to next for TeachMeetNZ, well we will be steaming live from Ulearn and I will have Matt Esterman from TMSydney with me as co-host. We will run a combined Australia and New Zealand TeachMeet virtually.

Finally, I was not all nervous this time. The changes I have made included creating slides and broadcasting them before each practice session. We also had questions happening on the  Hangout and I will push this more next time.

Now if you are interested in taking part, please do not hesitate to contact me on twitter. If there is space I do bring in educators from outside New Zealand however the time difference for you does suck.

TeachMeetNZ Bloopers and Troopers and where to next.

TMNZ Anniversary

Yesterday was the second anniversary celebration of TeachmeetNZ. WOW I can hardly believe how fast the past two years have evolved with the project. To anyone who has taken part as a presenter, audience or the support crew, I say thank you. I cannot tell you how far the reach of TeachMeetNZ has been. All I can do is share some of the numbers I have such as having over 80 educators share their learning.

After each session I push out the evaluation form and use the feedback to drive the next session. Currently most of the feedback comes from the presenters. The feedback allows me to identify areas that need addressing.


One day I must put together a TeachMeetNZ bloopers clip. To be honest most of the major bloopers will end up being me. I still have a giggle when I recall one session going live with my opening slide telling the world that I was outside hanging up the washing and to get ready for the broadcast. Since that day, I now just launch straight into a session because TeachMeetNZ is not about my learning but about the current presenting team’s learning.

Yesterday was no exception. 40 minutes until live time, I could not get the hangout record button activated. The setting up has become so slick, that the link had been prebroadcasted as part of the advertising sheet I generally set up.

So I left the team on the original hangout while I problem shooted. I quickly set up another hangout, grabbed the links, readjusted and came back to the team where I gave them the new hangout link and asked them to rebroadcast the new link like mad over twitter and google+ hangout. This all happened in the space of 15 minutes. Thank goodness I knew hangouts so well that I was able to do this.

Then we went live and once I had greeted everyone, we had technical feedback happening just as the first presenter lined up for their spot. Someone had the video live and I watched the mics trying to identify who…. it was me. In embedding the new video onto the home wiki, I had inadvertently left the page open. One of the ‘rules’ I go through with the team during practice sessions.


I will let the presenters into a little secret here, those of you who know me well know that I am not the best at multitasking. I cannot operate technically and listen to conversations at the same time. Therefore it is important for me to see your slides before the session so that I may prepare myself better as a host. During a live session, I am so busy watching cameras and mics that I have no idea what you say. I come back and rewatch the session after the event and then give you feedback via twitter. My feedback is usually positive because I know how far you have travelled technically as educators during this period of preparation. I know preparation has been intensive and I know how much work you put into your presentation. In addition, I know that you have already had feedback from your peers during the practice run throughs. I believe that last thing you need at this stage would be critical feedback.

Where to Next: TeachMeetNZ Leadership Panelist Discussion

From a presenter’s perspective TeachMeetNZ  is all about connecting and collaborating with each other to create a product for education. But from an audience perspective TeachMeetNZ  is about consuming. Yes there is some feedback on twitter and sometimes with the Q & A on a hangout and generally it is all positive. I have had some of the audience reflect on a session via blogging.

I do have an idea for an upcoming session. I can see a TeachMeetNZ critical discussion happening but will need to select the panelists carefully.  Maybe only have 4x. I envisage a depth discussion happening where we can come together as educators and have dialogue. Kind of like a debate, or a critical friend discussion. Where we are taking someone’s work or research and critiquing it. Not in a critical sense but yet in a critical way. From my experience in education I have identified very few educators who have the skills to cope with discussion like this. I do not believe I could cope with discussion like this because I am an educator who has better discussion after the fact.

I have to choose carefully and firstly I need a strong host. The major challenge is identifying who because I know what happens when school leaders get together, they can be worse than teachers in keeping to a time schedule. I am looking for dialogue leaders who are strong in their field of research and practice and can handle the discussion. That they are willing to be open to the critical dialogue. That they would treat this session as learning for their own professional growth. That they are open to having their views swayed with the discussion. That are happy to create a recording for education.

So I need some whos, I already have in a mind a host. Who do you think could cope with this task. In education who have you heard speak in a critical way and I am not just talking about blogs, I am talking about real time. Maybe this is the leadership TeachMeetNZ that many have asked for. Drop me a DM via twitter and give me some names.

To find out more about TeachMeetNZ, check out the previous sessions.