Saturday, February 24, 2007

Learning At School - Rotorua

I must remember to make my camera next time! Some photos would have been a real bonus.

The conference has been great. My own focus area for this conference was on enriching Inquiry and I wasn't disappointed. I enjoyed presenting the breakout with Gail. It went well and we always gain so much from this experience. During this first breakout session, we shared our cluster's inquiry journey, a lot of the work we have done in the past 10 plus years, sharing some of the many resources we have made and some of the ICT Tools we have found beneficial. It was great to be able to share Carol's class's Sandpit Inquiry also. Paengaroa are really moving well down the Inquiry track as are some of our other schools. Such an enriching experience for those involved. Our presentation focus on Questioning and Thinking, Finding and Using Information to Make a Difference certainly seemed to hit the mark and Carol's junior class inquiry displays this so well.

I missed the first keynote as we were preparing for our presentation but I hear the video by Sir Ken Robinson was great. It can be downloaded from Will have to catch up with that myself when I get a moment. I know others will want to go over this again too. Thanks to Douglas, and Telecom's bb access, I now have this clip in my trusty USB .

A real highlight for me has been the introduction to Classblogmeister. See the posting below. I'd highly recommend it to all involved in Inquiry or wanting their students to write and read with in an authentic and purposeful environment. Blogging can simply be part of your literacy programme, Thanks to Jody and Tom who shared their knowledge so well. This site can replace the IB5 learning logs used by so many of our cluster students.

Other sessions on Questioning and Virtual Networks will also impact into our cluster inquiry plans. Thanks to Rachel Jeffares for the session on blogging too. I wished I had a whole day to just learn and play with this! The keynotes by David Warlick and Russell Bishop were well worth hearing. I am only just beginning to get my head around the Web 2.0 tools available which really do open a whole new world up. Isn't education exciting! We need to not only embrace these tools but the people changes that have to be made as well. WHS's Mrs Kharana does this so well. Great to see Whakatane High School on the big screen, celebrating such an inspirational teacher. We have always felt privileged to have had Mrs Kharana teach our own children. Would like to view Russell Bishop's slide show all over again.

Our cluster is superb! What a great group to go conferencing with. Thank goodness we have the weekend to recover!

Yep a good few days. I enjoyed the networking with others in so many ways and appreciated the opportunity to be enveloped into such a knowledgeable and friendly group of people, all so ready to share their time, experience, wit and humour. Can't wait til next time!

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Our Cluster Journey Together Into New Horizons.