Tuesday, 4 November 2008

Ulearn08 Feedback

Ulearn08 Feedback
Christchurch October 2008


This was my first time attending a Ulearn conference or any other ICT conference so I had limited expectations. Unfortunately I became unwell the day before Ulearn and so was unable to enjoy it fully or attend every breakout.

My hopes expectations were already dashed before I even flew down. This was due the fact that when I booked my breakout sessions upon receiving notification, many of the ones of interest to me were already full. However I soon got over this and through discussion with colleagues knew that a couple I had booked in were popular choices for a good reason.

KEYNOTES
Day 1
On arrival to the Town Hall I was quite taken aback by the number of teachers attending!
The first key notes for me were slightly disappointing. They definitely achieved their goal of spreading the message that change is here and that we as teachers need to meet this change head on. However I felt as though the message was one that totally disregarded the fact that teachers are already changing and that we can only change at a certain rate. I firmly believe there is far more to good teaching than keeping up with technological change.
It was unfortunate that Bruce McIntyre did not have an opportunity to speak for longer. From what points he did cover, he came across as realistic about what the business sector wants from the education sector.

Day 2 Steve Carden was entertaining and a very well spoken presenter. He was interesting to listen to with lots of attempts to humour his audience. He had points that rang true for me and valued the importance of working together.


BREAKOUTS

Tony Ryan – Transformational Teachers

This was my first break out session and if I had left Ulearn08 only having heard Tony Ryan then I would have been more than happy.

He was inspiring, realistic, motivating and entertaining. Tony captured the audience’s attention and promoted audience interaction. This was a great way to get people talking and doing! A lot of presenters could learn a lot from this style of delivery.

Interesting Points:
· There are 4 key skill sets that are vital to the success of a teacher
· Teachers have 50% impact on the learning success of children
· We have 3 choices as people and as teachers…
· 1. awake but asleep 2. the ‘what if?’ people 3. the people who just do!
· It is not what do we need to teach, the question is Who do we need to be?
· Self talk and the ‘meta-self’
· Values programme
· Blogs – Never has there been written so much but read by so few!!!

How will it impact my teaching?
· Stop moaning about the things that can’t be changed
· Look in the mirror more often
· Self talk to deal with situations that arise
· Devise a mantra
· Speak with Management about the 7 core values
·
www.ted.com - free stuff!
· Tonyryan.edublogs.org
·
www.plotpd.com - Tony’s favourite site!
· Check out Johnny Lee for smart board resources


Claire Ross – Using an Interactive whiteboard to teach Inquiry

This was a fantastic breakout session that was highly interactive, engaging, well presented and informative.

Claire used a promethian however illustrated things that could be done on any interactive board.

I have emailed Claire to ask if she could email any presentations notes she had as I was so interested and involved in the session that I didn’t make them!

Interesting Points:
· The whole presentation was interesting and informative. The interactive remotes used would be fantastic to have a class set of so that you could engage students. Kids could submit their responses and vote. The teacher could see who had answered, how long it took and their answers. Beat the old way of putting up your hand and only one person sharing the answer!!
· She modelled her session on the inquiry process. It was great to see this documented in Notebook.

How will it impact my teaching?
· Inquiry Notebook – I have already incorporated this idea into my teaching for this terms topic. I have made a template and am using with my kids. I will print it off to keep a hard copy (so important for 5 year olds to have something tangible to refer to)
· Claire demonstrated how to use ‘tags’ on the screen so that some information was ‘off the page’.
· Will load Smart notebook version 10

Visit to the Trade Hall

This was my opportunity to wander around and see many of the new products out there.
I also spent some time looking at the posters of the Microsoft Teacher Award Finalists.

What made an impact?
· ‘Flip Ultra’ - Simple video cameras suitable for junior children to use

My pick is the
Flip Ultra video camera. This nifty device - around the size of a good pile of business cards - is robust, simple and very, very usable. It has a big button for ‘on’, another for ‘record’, the software’s already loaded, and you don’t need a cable to plug it into your computer. It takes an hour of footage at 640 x 480 pixels and runs on two AA batteries. Thanks to the convenience of this camera, teachers and students will be able to take video the moment the occasion arises. Sarah Jones

· Smart board stand – Spoke to representative there who answered my questions about functions of smartboard that I had seen on Promethian
· Got give a ‘Smart board for dummies’ guide – Fantastic!!

Sarah Jones - Great Technologies and …

· Excellent presentation about what it is that students are doing on the web and how some schools are tapping into the social networks for learning opportunites
· She showed a range of cool websites that are out there.
· I found that I was aware or using many of the technologies that she referred to. This made me feel on the right track with my own capabilities as a teacher and also in the learning experiences I provide for my 21st century learners!

How will it impact my teaching?
· Continue to use the technologies I am already using but source new ones to include
· Have my students access my delicious account for websites related to learning.
· Check out tki again for updates
· Use
www.commons.wikimedia.org for photos – free copyright
· Use
www.zoo-m.com for photos – free copyright
· Look at
www.rosetown.wikispaces.com
· Look at Sarah’s website – www.lunchbox.org.nz
· Add Fiona Grant to my delicious account
· Send Sarah the link to my classes blog
·
http://delicious.com/willowdale -Add to my own delicious account


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