Welcome to my blog! I'm Karen Belt, a teacher and leader of digital learning, working at Lynmore Primary School in Rotorua, New Zealand. I'm teaching in a Year 2 class using iPads to engage and motivate learners and improve student achievement. This blog documents my teaching journey and my learning processes with iPads in the classroom. I've proud of having been a member of the inaugural Manaiakalani Digital Teaching Academy(MDTA) program and last year a Spark Manaiakalani Innovative Teacher (MIT) and Manaiakalani Google Class OnAir teacher.

Monday, 16 April 2018

GAFE Summit 2018 Opening Keynote

I'm excited to be attending the GAFE Summit in Auckland again this year.  Once again its being held at the wonderful Aorere College, in South Auckland. 


Opening Keynote - The Relevant Teacher - Patrick Green

Taking risks can affect more than just you - what you're doing in your classroom affects all your students.  Patrick works at Singapore American School, where they recently sent teachers around the school to visit innovative schools - those that are changing to meet the needs of their students.  During his trip, Patrick visited California - Da Vinci Innovation Labs (students go to school two days a week and learn from home three days a week) and Sequoyah (mixed aged classrooms, where students are held back twice before the age of 12 in order to facilitate leadership skills). 

Change is difficult
Interactions everyday start to shape students - relevant teachers matter.

What are relevant teachers doing?

  • Flipping their classroom and taking on the role of the learner
  • Look at what they teach with a whole new lens - is this transferrable beyond my classroom?
  • Realises when they are wasting students time
  • Not afraid of access to information - students can speak it out to find information
  • Allow students to use devices on their exams
  • Are not making students do what adults don't do
  • Recognise that one size fits nobody - personalised learning is meaningful
  • Meeting students where they are at
  • Helping students to craft a digital footprint - portfolios have a purpose
  • Incorporate autonomy, mastery and purpose into the classroom
  • Teaches students to become independent learners and to find the answers to their questions
  • Throwing exemplars into the trash as they will not develop innovators and encourage creativity - intentionally leave the exemplars blank!
  • Value students not following instructions - independent thinking
  • Doing it the way "someone else" says is not a 21st century skill
  • Play Minecraft for the 'language acquisition' - play with your students to understand 'their' world
  • Give students some side quests - it can look messy but they explore their own passions and interests
  • Refuse to accept junk from their students - they expect greater levels of creativity
  • They have a super power - they can take anything and use it for learning
  • Insert play and inspiring ideas into their classrooms
  • Embracing the interruptions as opportunities for imagination and curiosity

How do you stay relevant ........  Be a Learner!
Grow ... and change!



Questions to Consider:

What are you doing in your classroom that you could remove to give your students more exploring and passion time - student agency?

Books to Consider Reading:

The End of Average - by Todd Rose (one size fits nobody)
A Whole New Mind / Drive - Daniel Pink

Websites and Links to Visit and Explore

iTime - @aliwh_white @shaunyk  (individualising the learning)

Values of the Institute of Play

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