Inspiring Classrooms Tony Ryan Whakatane 6th October 2007 What you can expect today!! • A good time!! • Lots of ideas on developing some inspiring classrooms • Various challenges to your own thinking The core premise YOU are the key factor in the creation of inspiring classrooms!! What about your own engagement here today? Use the Rubrics Key to assess the quality of your own engagement in this workshop Can you clarify some descriptors for Slack; and Sensational The Rubrics Key Poor effort Sensational Fully focused Yawning Enthusiasm Contributing Not taking part lots of ideas Always Quality of No meta- analysing how thinking application to use ideas Living A Full Life • Six domains to human existence? • Physical / Social / Mental / Financial / Professional / Spiritual • Four steps to attaining quality practice • What I presently do well • What I‟d love to take further • First steps • Success Indicators 2nd Millenium Living 3rd Millenium Living A Job Work Focus on time Focus on energy Avoid stress Seek stress Focus on problems Focus on solutions „Nice‟ culture Demanding culture Two-way / three-way One-way learning ....learning Neo-millenial classrooms will require.... • A massive rethink on the application of neuroscience research and new learning perspectives (eg with theories such as „connectivism‟) • An alignment with the Web 2.0 environment (collaboration collaboration collaboration) • Adults (and students) who can engage in substantive high trust dialogue and ongoing learning • High energy and inspiration Theories on thinking and learning?? Behaviourism Constructivism Cognitivism Connectivism (connectivism.ca) Right here and now... 10-year-old children set up businesses online 8-year-old Chinese children develop World Of Warcraft avatars, and then sell them online Quadraplegics move their wheelchairs with their own thinking Toyota have spent over $1 million on advertising in Second Life Making Connections • Web 1.0 (one-way) • Internet banking • Most applications of Google and Amazon • Web 2.0 (two-way) • YouTube • Facebook • Blogs / wikis Deeper applications of technology Web 1.0 • Net banking Web 2.0 • Most search •YouTube engines •MySpace • Amazon • Facebook • Wikipedia Web 4.0 Web 3.0 • Everyday CyberLife • Avatar synchronisation • Download of entity onto • Ubiquitous computing Web2030 eg wearable technology • Human / robot interface • Walking brains Team Learning?? o Use collaborative learning strategies as often as possible (NB be aware of the difference between „groupwork‟ and „cooperative learning‟) o Generate a supportive classroom environment o Explicitly teach social skills eg listening; encouraging Generating a supportive c‟room environment • Respect respect respect • Help students to know more about each other • Some fun activities: • Social Venn diagrams • This Is My Life • 2 truths and 1 outrageous lie Learning a social skill • 1. Draw up a T-Chart (Looks like / Sounds like), and write the name of the skill at the top eg Top Listening • 2. Rolemodel the skill to the group • 3. Clarify the specifics of the skill with the T- Chart • 4. Practise it immediately 4 hot classroom hints on student „engagement‟ • 1. Focus on what is presently working; and do more of it!! • 2. Consistently offer the most engaging possible curriculum and pedagogy • 3. Analyse the research on Net Gen; and then create learning experiences that reflect these findings • 4. Integrate the use of computer games / simulations / contemporary ICT into curriculum delivery at every opportunity Some upfront points on „engagement‟ • Are we talking about a 20th C or a 21st C response to the „issue‟ of student engagement? • What IS engagement? How do you know when a student is engaged? • How engaged are YOU every day? (NB beware the concept of Shadow Self) Some critical points Schools with good teacher-student relationships, and with high expectations for student success, have more engaged students Technology by itself is not sufficient; the interest level of the task also matters One of the most important factors is that students believe they can succeed Teach them how to self-talk Chris Dede Baby Boomers Generation X Net Generation (Harvard Uni) Birth Dates 1946–1964 1965–1982 1982–1995 Latchkey Description Me generation Millennials generation Optimistic Independent Hopeful Attributes Workaholic Skeptical Determined Responsibility Freedom Public activism Likes Work ethic Multitasking Latest technology Can-do attitude Work-life balance Parents Laziness Red tape Anything slow Dislikes Turning 50 Hype Negativity Implications for Net Gen classrooms • Inject some emotion into the learning • Use visual reinforcement at every opportunity • Give students time to process the learning • Heighten the intellectual rigour The ultimate „engagement‟? • A fantastic unit of work!! • An exemplar unit could include: • 1. Authentic learning projects (or at least, an essential question) • 2. Core understandings • 3. HOT questions • 4. Engaging classroom strategies 1. Authentic learning projects • ICT: Internet café in aged care home • Science: School rubbish analysis • Math: Analysing how a bicycle really works • Integrative: Developing a Brain Policy for your school • Social Science: Travel Buddies • English: Developing podcasts about a novel study • ICT: Digital folios The need for century21st solutions to?? • The influence of robotics? • Applications of nanotechnology? • Global warming? • Active citizenship and local contribution? • Specific global issues eg land mines? Access to drinking water? 2. Core Understandings • What really do you want your students to understand by the end of the unit? • ie KidSpeak for objectives • Provide explicit displays of these Core Understandings (eg with prominent wall displays) 3. HOT questions • Eg ICT: Why are at least 90% of websites around the world written in English?? • Eg Minibeasts: How do wings work? • Eg Local Study: Who really is the most influential person in our area? Why? • Eg Design: Which toy would choose you? • Eg Music: Why do most foreign countries write their hit songs in English? • Eg Social Science: Was exploration the 19th century version of extreme sport? Developing HOT questions • Choose a unit or area of study • Brainstorm a key question about the unit that would even „stretch‟ an adult • It must be a cognitive challenge • It must be relevant to the topic • It must be (one of) the most important possible question(s) about this topic • Then reframe it to suit the age group • Use this process 100s of times every week Curriculum-framing questions • A unit on „Food For Thought‟: • Essential Question How can I stay healthy? • Unit Questions How do my eating habits affect my health and growth? How do I plan a healthy, nutritious diet? What factors influence my food choices? • Content Questions What is the food pyramid? What is the right number of calories for me? More Curriculum- Framing Questions • Essential Question How does literature help us better understand ourselves? • Unit Question How does Shakespeare still speak to a 21st century audience? • Content Questions * Who are the characters in Romeo and Juliet, and how do they contribute to the deaths in the play? * What is imagery, and what are some examples of how Shakespeare uses imagery in Romeo and Juliet to present a compelling and powerful message? * What are the themes and issues in Romeo and Juliet that are relevant to today? 4. Engaging strategies • An explicit focus on thinking strategies such as – Graphic organisers – Decision matrices – Rubrics • A consistent use of team learning strategies eg – Expert Jigsaw – Paired Interviews – Academic Controversy – Doughnut Adult brains love to be inspired and challenged • We need a life and learning ethic, not a work ethic • Gen Y teachers: “How can you help me to discover more about myself while I‟m working here?” • High energy schools attract high achieving teachers • It‟s not hard work that tires us out. • It‟s negative work that Quality tires us out. schools • People make energy choices in their lives: have high • Energy creators energy • Energy neutrals • Energy consumers (Brighouse and Woods; cited in Fullan, 2005) Energy Creators • Are enthusiastic and always positive • Use critical thinking, creativity and imagination • Stimulate and spark others • Practise leadership at all levels • Are able and willing to scrutinise their practice • Wish to improve on their previous best Energy neutrals • Competent sound practitioners • Willing to address the task • Good at „maintenance‟ • Sometimes uncomfortable accepting examination of their practice by others • Capable of improving on their previous best Energy consumers • Have a negative view of the world • Resent change and practice blocking strategies • Use other people‟s time excessively • Not feel good about themselves • Be able and unwilling to critically examine their teaching practice • Appear not to want to improve on their Physical Mental • Nutritional food • Consistent focus on •Sufficient water optimistic thoughts • Regular exercise • Meditative practices HIGH ENERGY Spiritual • Having a deep purpose for your life • Believing in something greater than yourself • Experiencing the flow of achievement, every day Your own energy? • Q. Is it possible to be inspiring all of the time? • Q. If the answer is NO, is it simply because we are resigned to our past neural pathways? • Q. Which of the 3 energy groups are you in right now? Strategies for supporting your learning? • Learning Expos • Learning Circles • Teacher-led PL • Blogs, chatrooms • Rituals for sharing of great practice • Earlybird breakfasts • Conferences (virtual, • Reflective journals real) • Professional Buddy • Credit card systems systems • ?????????? From here..... • 1. What do you need to achieve? • 2. What is happening now? • 3. What could you do? • 4. What will you do? • 5. How and when will you do it? • 6. How will you sustain success? • From “The Leadership Coaching Guide” Further web options • plotpd.com • schoolaid.org • tonyryan.com.au After today?? • Debrief on this workshop content with at least one other person by next Friday • Personally revisit this info – One day from now – One week from now • Include something (anything!!) new in your daily life for the next two weeks. Use a brightly coloured pen to write these ideas / changes in your diary. • Find a life coach Make a difference Q. How inspired are you by education? The world needs you to know that you make a difference It gives you a purpose for your work Remember the Ripple Effect The power of everyday actions Everyone?? Every One !! Wrapping Up • Your rubric?? • firstname.lastname@example.org • A challenge for the next week: Stay solution-focused in every dialogue, without exception • May you continue to create energy in your schools and your life • Thank you!