Tuesday, 22 September 2015

Activity 1: Welcome to my Reflective Journal

My teaching journey began 8 years ago, when after moving to a small rural town for my husband's new job with a 3 and a half year old and a 3 week old baby, I decided that wasn't enough and I wanted to be a teacher.  So I jumped in feet first...one year of hell, training on-line, fitting three practicums around two young children and seemingly endless assignments later, I graduated to become a brand new beginner teacher.  Best decision of my life I have to say.

I spent 18 months teaching a small rural town before moving back to Auckland and finding a job at Elm Park School (EPS) in Pakuranga.  During my time at EPS I have had many opportunities to extend myself as a learner and teacher.  I have been an ICT Lead Teacher for the last five years and been lucky enough to attend ULearn (2015) for three years in a row amongst other PD.  This really opened my eyes up to the world of the possibilites of ICT in education, different ways of teaching and learning in the 21st Century and motivated me to try and trial new things in my classroom.  It has led me to facilitate an enrichment group of Year 5/6 students in our school showing a particular interest and talent in ICT.  I run the Digikids group for an hour once a week.  We explore and investigate a range of ICT activities, gadgets and tools that they wouldn't experience in their everyday classes, ie coding, movie making etc.  They are then able to share this with their teachers and classmates.  

Over the past two years, a colleague and I decided to start a Modern Learning Environment, or according to the latest label, Innovative Learning Environment (ILE) .  Our Prinicpal was very open and supportive of the idea and so we began.  We didn't let the traditional classroom setting in our school stop us.  We took a door between two classrooms off its hinges, threw out a whole heap of furniture, overhauled our planning and two years later we are still going strong.
 
This journey has led me to undertaking the PostGraduate Certificate in Applied Learning (Digial and Collaborative Learning) The Mindlab by Unitec (2015).   I have enjoyed the course so far, it has been challenging, motivating and intersting.   Now is the time to reflect and consolidate the things I have learnt through this blog!


References


Elm Park School. (2015). Retrieved September 23, 2015, from Elm Park School: http://www.elmpark.school.nz/
The Mindlab by Unitec. (2015). Postgrad studies. Retrieved June 23, 2015, from The Mindlab by Unitec: http://themindlab.com/postgrad-studies/
ULearn. (2015). Retrieved September 23, 2015, from ULearn: http://www.core-ed.org/events/ulearn-conference