EduCampWelly 2017

EduCampWelly was another highly beneficial PL opportunity with the cross-sector pollination particularly valuable. This blogpost contains some of the many ideas I came across during the day, ideas that I hope to explore further in the future. I owe a lot to Raroa Intermediate, as a lot of my learning from the day came from their initiatives and their generous sharing of their philosophy and approach to learning.

The Raroa Intermediate Tour

An undoubted highlight was the tour around Raroa Intermediate from Jason and Stephen. They spoke passionately about the Raroa Vision and the connection between the philosophy and the design of space. Some of the ideas that stayed with me included:

  • Designing space for learning – classrooms are organised to be used by students in student centred ways. One idea that came through is levels of learning, providing low, middle and high options for students. Other aspects of design I found interesting included white board tables, removing teacher desks, flexible design and variation of spaces. 
  • Teacher teams – Learning teams are constructed usually in groups of four with lots of autonomy around how they design learning in their connected spaces. This develops teamwork and collaboration and it sounds as though this approach of working together is embedded in the very fabric of the school. 
  • Change theories supported the shift in practice such as “social contagion” (similar to behavioural contagion?) – by highlighting and emphasising good practice the school culture shifted to follow in those same footsteps. This has lead me to reflect on the need to spread the voices that are leading PL.

Stephen’s blog unpacks some more of this journey.

Skillset, Mindset, Toolset

More Raroa goodness. This idea of three lenses to support the design thinking process can really help to grow agency and gives a language with which to inquire deeper into learning outcomes. The notosh lab defines them as:

Mindset: How you see, perceive and view the world around you – your beliefs and way of thinking that determine your behaviour and outlook, how you’ll interpret and respond to situations.

Skillset: How you act and behave based on your capabilities, knowledge and understanding as well as your motivation to put your abilities to use – ie. your mindset.

Toolset: What mechanisms you use to develop your skills and achieve your objectives – these can be any number of methods, techniques, models, approaches and frameworks that create value in your chosen field.

This blog unpacks these ideas further.

The T-Shaped Person

The T-Shaped person was new to me – pitched as a “metaphor for achieving success”. The top of the T indicates the breadth of knowledge, the bottom of the T indicates the depth. References to further resources and the source of these ideas are listed on the T-Shaped wiki page.

The Raroa Tree


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