A shake-up for education?

This week I had the privilege of attending an event in Auckland where Minister of Education, Nikki Kaye, officially released the final draft of the Digital Technologies-Hangarau Matihiko Curriculum for consultation. The event was opened with a group of students from the Lynfield College Robotics club who gave an outstanding presentation about their work as a team to design and develop robots which they have been enteringĀ into various competitionsĀ since 2008 – winning multiple national and international titles in that time! One by one the group of year 11 – year 13 students gave their perspective on what contributed to the … Continue reading A shake-up for education?

Computing our future…

 To code or not to code – that is the question that has been debated hotly for more than two decades now in many countries around the world – including New Zealand.  Like many other countries, New Zealand put all of its eggs into the 'ICT and digital literacy for all" basket from 1990, when the first MoE-funded professional devleopment programmes began. That philosophy has underpinned all of the ICT-PD strategies and spending to the current day – the argument being that ICTs (or digital technologies as they're now being referred to) are a part of everyone's experience, not simply … Continue reading Computing our future…

Thinking more about Globalisation

I've just arrived back from a trip to Chengdu, China where I was present for the signing of the Sichuan Christchurch Education Alliance. Nearly 40 educators from greater Christchurch were present, with a key focus of the time spent on developing relationships that are intended to lead to opportunities for educational exchanges between Christchurch and Chengdu teachers and students.   Globalisation will undoubtedly be one of the most significant influences on modern learning practice as we look further into the 21st century. The need for students to have well developed understandings of cultural literacy, inter-cultural awareness and a basic grasp of international language(s) … Continue reading Thinking more about Globalisation

Focus on energy

Occasionally I come across a resource site for teachers that I feel is worthwhile sharing on my blog – today it's energy kids – developed and made available by the US Energy Information Admistration.  Energy – its production, use and conservation – is a hot topic for today's young people. It will be one of the things that defines how society develops into the new millennium as old forms of energy are depleted and new forms are developed, experimented with and adopted. Our young people will need to be well informed about these issues – and many of them will … Continue reading Focus on energy

Reading for pleasure

I'm about to take three week's leave and travel with my wife to the US, and in preparation, I've been choosing some novels to take with me to read. Reading for pleasure is one of those activities that can easily be 'lost' in the competition for time to keep abreast of all of the professional reading that comes across my desk, plus, of course, the interminable barrage of emails that require reading and dealing with each day. Yet while reading all of that sort of thing may be intellectually stimulating and professionally engaging, nothing beats the sheer enjoyment of sitting … Continue reading Reading for pleasure

A parent guide to 21st Century learning

I've just been reading this new guide published by Edutopia, titled A parent's guide to 21st Century Learning. As with much of the material published on the Edutopia site, this is a really useful collection of tips, ideas and links for parents and educators alike (and I qualify on both fronts šŸ™‚ The ideas in the booklet are grouped according to the age of the students, and use the “4Cs” from the Partnership for 21st Century Skills as a framework for emphasising the educative value of the learning resources that are shared. Collaboration: Students are able to work effectively with diverse groups … Continue reading A parent guide to 21st Century learning

Adventure in your community

it's always useful at the start of a school year to come across resources that might be useful in the school programme. This one from National Geographic Education came to me through TES Online, and is intended to support Geography Awareness week (which I wasn't aware existed).  The parent guide provides an excellent overview of the sorts of activities and challenges you can set kids to do – it would make a superb resource for teachers also to incorporate some of these activities into a classroom programme.  The resource is designed to invite individuals or teams of students, families, or … Continue reading Adventure in your community

Critical thinking about conspiracy theories

It's always useful to find resources that can be used to promote a combination of critical thinking, cyber-citizenship, research and history (to name a few). The following resource came to me via Learning Times, and provides some material that I'm sure could be used very creatively in classrooms:  Conspiracy Theories in Aerospace History A lesson in Critical Thinking for the Internet Age You can't believe everything you read on the Internet. How do you evaluate the reliability of online information? Check out the conference archives from this National Air and Space Museum interactive online conference developed especially for teachers and … Continue reading Critical thinking about conspiracy theories

Educating for global citizenship

One of CORE's ten trends is Citizenship, addressing three key themes, global citizenship, digital citizenship and cybercitizenship. Today I came across an excellent resource for teachers interested in educating for Global Citizenship. Produced by Oxfam, the downloadable PDF titled Education for Global Citizenship: A Guide for Schools begins with the challenge: In a fast-changing and interdependent world, education can, and should, help young people to meet the challenges they will confront now and in the future. Oxfam believes that Education for Global Citizenship is essential in helping young people rise to those challenges. The resource provides an excellent rationale for … Continue reading Educating for global citizenship