So you’re Team Teaching now, are you?

Screen Shot 2014-08-03 at 10.16.23 pmOur school has been working in Team Teaching pairs now for the best part of a year. It’s been so successful and beneficial across the board that we couldn’t imagine going back to teaching alone. We are also really pleased to see that this approach to a school structure is catching on all over the country and we’re having quite a few schools visiting to see what all the fuss is about.

Of course we’re not claiming to invent the idea of working with other teachers – my first introduction came from Jo Fothergill, a teacher from New Zealand, who spoke about her team teaching aspirations at an Educamp we hosted at our school in 2012. But we are very proud at our school of developing a whole school culture that has embraced Team Teaching as a crucial part of our shared pedagogy and learning programme.

So – why is there so much push back? I’m going to start a short series of posts that will ‘unpack’ (one of my favourite words, apparently) some of the reasons why TT gets so much resistance and also what makes it work at our school!

 

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Mediamash Workshop Slides

I’m part of an initiative called, ‘Mediamash‘ which is aimed at inspiring schools to dig into the treasure chest of digital media for their learning programmes.

Today we launched our first teacher and student workshops. These are the slideshows from 2 workshops I ran, with a colleague.

I always love talking with other teachers about the systems and methods we’re using in our classes – especially ones with so much passion and enthusiasm for giving our students the best possible learning experiences!

Worried about losing an ipad at school?

Our school has had a large roll out of ipads minis this year and it’s been a journey learning how to
 – configure
 – register
 – store
 – update
 – charge
 – secure!

Last week we had one of ours go missing for a weekend and we weren’t sure how to find it. So – once it was found in the library shelf – we set about getting ‘Find my iphone’ set up on all of them. No mean feat!

Here’s a video I’ve made that shows the steps. I’m intending to share this with parents, too so they can have some peace of mind over the BYODs they send with their children each day.

Created on Quicktime Pro – music made on ‘I am Beatbox’ app.

Further down Neo-Liberalism Lane.

Two days ago I saw a tweet from a Principal friend, asking what charter schools were. Naturally I was curious to follow the thread that resulted from his question. Then it began…

Like most of us in the teaching arena we were probably shocked, but then not. It follows the National Party direction down ‘business model’ avenue. “It’s all about freedom of choice and the free market,” they hum. We should be adding, “Children are not products in your factories!” to the soundbite war.

Here’s a slightly predictable article from the nzherald, praising the charter school proposal and giving teachers another serve. Below is a comment I posted (which has 23 likes but not that I’m counting).

It’s interesting that the majority of comments are, likewise, anti the idea.

So lastly, here’s a small shot across their bow. For what it’s worth. And yes, Mum, I’m trying to stay positive.