Goundhog Day at Newmarket School

In 1877, Newmarket School in Auckland New Zealand was established on the site where 277 is today.
On the weekend I was excited to have our current principal Dr Wendy Kofoed take part in an online discussion about learning with educators from around New Zealand.
This discussion will continue throughout October as part of #CENZ14.
After the discussion I put a call out to Pam Hook to read what we have so far accomplished as I wanted to ensure that the project is framed by SOLO Taxonomy. 
Pam flicked me a link to a sceptics log she and a team of creators had made in 2006 and the discussion was the same. In addition she linked me up to Chris Bigum who had been part of that original discussion and he started feeding me readings and video links via twitter.
The outcome of all that weekend learning is this reflection.
One particular idea that I had read about and awoke with was groundhog day. 
We are such an old school. I thought of our first school leader, Captain Charles Ross Cholmondely Smith.
in his single classroom with his room full of children.
The stories I have read about how the children learnt is hilarious. 
But if we revisit those early days of education, we know that the teacher was basically a coach.
They used the older children to teach the younger children who in turn taught the younger ones than themselves. In addition he would have had a team of children leaders who took care of various activities to help with the running of the school, kind of like our student leadership programme.
If a child needed extra help they would know who to ask for support.
They would only go to the teacher when absolutely necessary because he ruled his classroom in true military style of the time. 
Newmarket School on current 277 site of today
As the years passed and the school grew and new teachers came in, the process continued with teachers using each other as support. There was no professional development in those days only personal learning.
They relied totally on the community for everything because there was no local $2.00 shops to stock up or colour photocopying for the walls. They used local resources in their programme kind of like the glocalisation concept. (No, not a spelling mistake.)
The children would have continued to support each other and most had a job to do to help keep the school clean and tidy because there would have been no school cleaners in those days. This is like how we structure our enviro programme.
I was thinking about our current situation with the discussion centred around learning and thought we are moving back to those times not because of circumstances but because it just worked.
Teachers are reminded about the pool of learning amongst their peers. Our current head teacher continues to lead by example in her own learning. She in turn guides and coaches her team in their learning, who guide and coach the teachers in their teams with their learning who guide and coach the children in their classes and between classes as we move back to ”it takes a whole school to teach a child,’ and we move back to the notion of a single building on the site where there are no walls and we learn with and from each other. 
We have a variety of interesting developments happening in our school and this is raising teachers to the surface with their learning. Even more exciting is that they are sharing their learning with each other and several have begun the journey of reflecting in a visible way for our global school community via  a blog that you can read on the right hand side. If I have missed anyone, please do send me your link.
So in our old grounds, in our old buildings that are being demolished and rebuilt I can hear our head teacher, teachers and children ancestors giggling and watching from the ruins saying, here we go again. And you know what, so what. This teacher with 30 years experience finds it exciting to watch the cycle of education life go around again. Just like I love watching our 100 year old tree go through its cycle of life on a yearly basis, change and grow bigger and better, Just like I love talking with teachers and hearing their learning stories and sharing their learning stories. Even more exciting is the change happening. 
Children ancestors of Newmarket School


Today was our  Travelwise Lead Teacher day held at the Trust Stadium in Henderson.
One of the most important aspects of these days is the opportunity to network with other Lead teachers from around Auckland and curate ideas that we can use back at Newmarket School.

A real highlight for me was seeing Christine Allen and Veronica Verschuur from Marist School. I worked with them many years ago.

Russell French designed the introductory session so that the information was front loaded using a QR code activity. We moved around the room scanning QR codes in order to locate correct information of facts asked. We could have also googled this information but the opportunity to try a digital activity was fun. Russell then shared with us the rest of the information via his presentation.
He then continued and introduced us to the work of Robert Cialdini and how to link this to our days learning.
Cialdini’s 6x principles of persuasion and apply it to Travelwise

  1. Reciprocity
  2. Commitment (and Consistency)
  3. Social Proof
  4. Liking
  5. Authority
  6. Scarcity

We moved around the stations of activities set up by the CTCs and we covered a lot of information in a variety of ways. 

    WOW www.atwowcalendar.co.nz . I was interested in seeing the WOW calendar set up as a way of children taking responsibility for data entry using the new online system.
    The day was fabulous as it reminded me of what I still need to do at our school.
    So here are my goals until the end of the year.
    • Complete our time zone map and photograph hazards.
    • Revisit our Walking School bus idea. Particularly as we are going through a rebuild and we don’t just have a hazard at the gate we have a Tsunami.
    • Set up a Travelwise display board. At this stage I have no idea where to place it as we are going through a rebuild. Maybe I will create a digital display and resurrect our Travelwise pages on our school Enviro wiki and revamp that.
    • I really liked the idea about surveying our parents and identify where they drop our children off so will create a google form for that.

    After lunch, I presented our school’s trial with the Tracksafe resource framed using SOLO Taxonomy. My pechakucha ended up being presented eight times so by the end of the afternoon I was hoarse. However I was excited as I could see where Virginia Kung and I need to improve on for our Ulearn presentation when we share how we have used the resource at Newmarket School.

    TOD at Mindlab

    On Friday 7th of February and a day after Waitangi Day, we had a teacher only day with a science focus. We visited Mindlab and spent the afternoon with @chrisclanz. The three hands on activities that were shared with us included making rockets, creating auras with Aurasma and adapting code to make our car robots work.  I added some photos here from my picasa drive. Chris highlighted the need to to Engage, Plan, Discuss and Reflect when teaching science.
    When we used Aurasma, we all had our teacher iPads and were provided with WIFI access to download, create a short video and upload to our accounts. Many teachers eagerly discussed their next steps with Aurasma. I was able to solve an ongoing problem of matching an aura with an underlay.

    Having our Science leader @BelindaHitchman sharing her passion for science was priceless. 

    Probably the highlight for me was making connections with teachers that I work with in an engaging and fun way. Yes I also learnt more about teaching science.  Chris showed us Scratch and Makeymakey as well as the 3D Printer. I was in geek heaven. I would have loved to have some more hands on coding opportunities with these technological learning tools. 
    I was excited to see a few of our Newmarket School teachers experimenting with twitter by sharing and adding their tweets of the events. I created a timeline using tweetdeck but am having trouble embedding the code in blogger. 
    How confident are you at teaching science? Have you visited Mindlab recently? What are your thoughts on hands on professional development for staff? How are your staff using twitter?


    Kia Ora, Talofa lava, Greetings .
    My name is Sonya and I am a teacher at Newmarket School.
    This is our first year for TravelWise. We are a Green/ Gold Enviro School and one of our focus this year is traveling to and from school.
    A little bit about me, I am a Samoan bilingual, I am ESOL trained and last year I was awarded an efellowship with Core Education.
    I have been teaching for over 25 years and have taught in all levels of primary school and have also spent time in tertiary teaching.
    Those of you with smart phones and with access to social media please do not turn them off but use them to broadcast today and use the hash tag #TravelWise
    You can find me on Instagram, Linked, Facebook and Twitter. You can also find me on Myportfolio and the Virtual Learning Network.  My online name is Ulimasao or you can find me by searching Van Schaijik
    Thank you to Jamie and Samuel for giving me this opportunity to share our learning story with you. Thank you to TravelWise for this day of professional learning and the opportunity to make connections.
    Today I am here to share with you our planning for real day that took place in May.
    To be more specific I will share with you how we used Social Media to make national and global connections during the day.
    It was a combination of events that all came together about the same time.
    First- we had been invited by Superclubsplus to put our name forward for the BBC Global Assembly as there were no New Zealand Schools involved. We had previously been involved in a global activity as part of our Enviro project and with our work with trialing Superclubsplus as part of the Netsafe project.
    So this is how the first connection was made. Then when Jamie and Samuel came for a meeting with regards to our Planning for Real Day.  I mentioned that if we could pull off the day and tie it with the BBC invitation, why not aim for within a fortnight.
    So we did. Jamie and Samuel coordinated the large school map and resources. I made contact with Superclubsplus who gave us the BBC contact. BBC agreed to interview us later in the BBC assembly and called for all our phone details. We also had to create an article in regards to our school and we did.
    We selected a group of children who began preparation for the interview.
    Then we received a call that Breakfast TV wanted to share our story so it was all go.
    We alerted staff of the short notice for the event and they were supportive by preparing the children for the Planning for Real Day.
    The planning for real day went to schedule and we took the map into the studio. Last minute phone calls were made to get parental permission for the televised session. We already had permission for the BBC project. Our children reminded the interviewer not to use their last names. Here is the interview.
    We waited for the phone call from England but unfortunately this did not eventuate. However with huge apologies from their part, BBC have highlighted us on social media and this is quite extensive.
    We did not waste the children’s prepared speeches and have used this on a school video which we hosted on our youtube channel.
    After the planning for Real Day we displayed the map in our foyer and already we can see a pattern and what we need to plan for next.
    We uploaded the photos to our picasa page, uploaded the videos to our youtube channel, and have been broadcasting #BBCassembly on twitter and facebook.
    How many of you use social media? One key idea we foster is ‘learn from doing’.
    We know our children will have access to most places online when they go home.
    So what we teach is keep yourself safe online and be respectful when using the Internet. This is the same as when they interact face to face.
    We also work through the same challenges with our teachers. We encourage them to experiment and become familiar with the tools. We remind them about their responsibilities when working with minors and their legal obligations.
    Here are some of the tools that the Ministry of Education encourage us to use in our professional learning. I will use this to plug a webinair that is happening today after school in regards to global citizenship.
    Our connections with our Planning for Real Day.
    You can find our social media sites on the front of our school website.
    As much fun as it is in making connections using the nodes of Social Media, I draw your attention to the ‘space between the nodes.’
    The space that cannot be seen but without it the nodes are meaningless. I liken the space to the air we breathe, or the sea that is such an important part of our survival.
    Relationships and making connections are not easy to assess but they are important in maintaining the social media nodes.
    So for TravelWise I am keen to make connections and develop relationships with those of you with experience in this area and with those of you just starting out like me. One idea is to have  a group of children working together collaboratively on a common goal that is TravelWise based.
    I shared with you our planning for real day that took place in May.
    I shared with you how we used Social Media to make national and global connections during the day. I suggested that I would like to make connections and to build relationships between schools on a collaborative project.
    So if anyone is keen to become involved, then please do not hesitate to make contact.