Monday, July 21, 2008

elearning-a serious moment ?

I was asked to write a blurb about our school and where we are at in ICT in the classroom, some information about our elearning vision and any links to what is happening. I wrote this for a group of Principals so excuse the simple sentences.

Summerland Primary School
Our elearning vision is an interesting one in that we dont specifically have a written one. Our school vision encompasses all that we do and it reflects where we want to be digitally. It is not accidental that we have only one vision but reflects how the delivery of elearning should be (integrated). A stand alone elearning vision is fine, but importantly the delivery of elearning needs to take place. Several years ago after the whole staff attended the Navcon conference in Chch I realised that it is easy to have words and talk and a fancy vision statement but “vision to action” is everything.
Our approach is full on emersion, try everything, encourage success, pile in PD from all angles, work hard and make it fun, build teams and teamwork, celebrate success and encourage life long learning. Web is massive in where the education sector is heading and we have taken many steps to make school an integrated, kid friendly, web environment that builds achievement and engagement. We are very aware of the impact of Web 2.0 in the classroom and are moving in many ways to see which parts of the web have a place for children. For every web 2.0 collaborative tool that works, there are 50 rubbish ones out there so it is a bit of steady as we go. We often see the web through different eyes as children. One thing that is important is to remember that our children are aged 5 to 11 and that the web for them is a totally different atmosphere. Adults have bookmarks, favourites, blogs, even delicious but kids have gaming sites, disney, hannah montana, rap music, wrestling, skateboarding and for me they donʼt have a “home”. We have our special places and so do they but are they doing the whole collaborative learning thing. We have worked hard at using out school site as a place for kids to go. They flock there by the thousands too, looking at each others work, leaving comments and talking to one another. By including them in the site through pictures, movies and podcasts and by kids creating the pages and content, we have captured the kids.
A few examples of whats happening.
blogs for the classroom
delicious in the classroom
visitors to our site
trash to fashion
school camp
singing video with high school
life size collages
competitions for kids
fiddling with flickr
There is heaps more on the school site with over 400 pages of stuff but the key is
collaboration and engagement, we are getting there.

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