Thursday, November 19, 2015

Flippin' professional development for teachers

Who else has sat in a staff meeting, exhausted from a busy day of teaching and found themselves totally tuning out to the so called PD, which usually looks like someone at the front of the staffroom talking to teachers, who are sitting 'listening'.

There is little opportunity for interaction, discussion or challenge and even IF the person at the front has some amazing gold to share, it is still extremely difficult to remain engaged in the learning when you are tired and thinking "I need to mark the kids writing from today, I need to email parents about camp, I need to talk to my team leader about a behaviour issue, I need to get home and pick my kids up, feed them, do homework, cook tea....." - who's with me? I know I'm not alone on this, as evidenced by all the hilarious staff meeting memes out there!

Now I need to raise my hands and plead guilty as in my time as a deputy principal and professional development facilitator, I have OFTEN found myself at the front of the room, staring out at people and wondering if they are hearing or caring about a word I say.  And I am sure we are thinking the exact same thing "There has to be a better way!"

This week I had the privilege of facilitating another Ako Panuku Hui ē, Tāiki ē! hui in Auckland, one of 3 hui I have facilitated this year.  The purpose of this hui was to firstly discuss and analyse the changes in education across Aotearoa and then introduce the following drivers of change - agency, connectedness, ubiquity and collaboration and how these provide opportunities to improve outcomes for tamariki by changing teaching and learning practices.  My co-facilitator Dee Reid and I wanted to model some of these practices throughout the PD hui and set up the two days so that we provided examples and ways of working that fostered these four kaupapa. We created an online Google Site and pre-populated the it with clips, links, resources, examples and questions around each of the 4 kaupapa.

Ako Panuku Hui on PhotoPeach

 On day 1 we began the hui with a open discussion about what is driving change in our own schools and how different people feel about the changes.  Then we introduced one of the key drivers of change at a time e.g. agency and directed all the teachers to the online content.  They had time to read, watch, research, play, learn and reflect and then we came together as a group to share what we had learned, what resonated with us, what challenged our thinking, what examples (if any) we saw of this in our school and what we would now commit to implementing in our classroom to provide opportunities for agency, ubiquity, collaboration and connectedness. As you can see from these pictures, all teachers on day 1 were engaged in the learning (for the entire day!).  They worked their way through the content at their own pace, they contributed their ideas and thoughts online through a shared google doc and face to face through our discussion time.  They had the ability to rewind and share the content with others.  They had time to explore and reflect and relate it to their own practice and most importantly, apply their new learning to their context, as this was the outcome for day 2.

Day 2 gave the teachers time to now create a resource that they could use in their own practice, back at their own school that directly linked to one of the four key drivers of change.  Each teacher had a several of hours to plan, design and create their resource and then had 20 minutes to share their mahi back to the whole group.  This was recorded and shared with everyone so we now had a kete of rauemi (a whole kit of resources) for everyone to access, if they wanted to.

When I asked the teachers how they felt about this style of professional development, they told me it was enjoyable as they could pick and choose things that interested them personally, it met their individual needs, it engaged them, they enjoyed having choice and the time to delve deep, they loved coming away with something practical they could use in the classroom and their professional learning was exponential. I won't lie - it felt really good to see this model was successful in terms of the learning outcomes we hoped to achieve and the engagement level of our participants.  Even better was the extremely small amount of time I stood at the front and talked to everyone aka poured the PD down their tuned out ears :)   This is just one small example of the way we could flip our traditional staff meetings to better engage staff and actually achieve some of the desired outcomes that we hope our PD will provide for our teachers.  If we as educators firmly support and believe that all of our children deserve an education that provides opportunities for student agency, ubiquitous learning, collaboration and connectedness then SURELY our teachers deserve that too?

Let's start a movement and phase out meeting for meetings sake, meetings that are all talk/no action, meetings where we all leave and think what did we achieve today or worse, what difference will that make for any of the kids in my class?   Perhaps we even need to start by phasing out the word meeting!  Let's move towards engaging, targeted professional development that meets the needs of staff, that let's them participate anywhere, anytime, online and face to face, where we connect and collaborate and even better, where we walk away with practical ideas, strategies and resources that we can use in our classrooms tomorrow that will support learning outcomes for our kids.

I know it sounds hard and I don't want to fall into the trap highlighted in the above meme of 'discussing things that must happen but never will' so I hunted this out on about "5 Challenges We Overcame Moving to a Flipped Staff Meeting", which could help get us started.  I am positive that with a little commitment and hard work it is achievable...who is with me?

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

My recommendations for colleagues considering transformation in education

EDEM682 - Transforming Education in Canterbury

The following review is a synthesis of key understandings and learning experiences that have emerged throughout the year that I would recommend to my colleagues considering transformation in education.

Exploring transformation and scoping educational change
Change can be difficult and stressful as it often stems from a ‘shifting context’, where the status quo is no longer the best way forward. For positive and sustainable change to occur, a ‘road map for leading change’ (Jansen, 2015) is important and must start with the why (Sinek, 2009). This not only supports leaders to understand the why but also to consider the key elements that will need to be explored while working through the change process, like the where, how, who and what. Once leaders have this roadmap in place, they can and should share it with all participants to ensure a shared understanding of the context for change and what elements will need to be explored when moving from the business as usual or ‘current state’, to the new business as usual or ‘future state’ (Jansen, 2015).
When scoping for change, the drivers for educational transformation should be identified. These are the things that are pushing or pulling your school towards the need to make changes. I would recommend that all key stakeholders have the opportunity to identify what external factors e.g. the global impact of technology or the identified new skills necessary for the jobs of tomorrow (OECD, 2012) and what internal factors, for example at my school, a whole school re­build due to earthquake damage, are influencing or already changing your educational context. Once these factors have been identified by all key stakeholders, you can then begin to see what potential risks/threats and what potential opportunities there are as a result of these drivers of change in action.

Visioning and systemic thinking in strategic planning
Strategic thinking must be systemic, in that we need to be able to see the big picture before we can understand the parts within it. To be able to make considerate and effective decisions around whole school change, understanding the whole comes before understanding the parts but the key element is actually in the interaction. If we do not consider the way in which decisions or change in one area can impact on another, we can be left with ‘unintended consequences’. An example of this could be where a school decides to change the hours of instruction, starting and finishing earlier in the day. This is based on good research that children will learn better in those hours but the unintended consequences could be huge e.g. increase of parents in need of after school childcare or out of sync timetables for siblings at different schools. I would recommend using key questions, relevant to your context, to create conversations and a shared understanding of the bigger picture, the parts within it and how the interact or influence each other. These questions could be used as a framework when working with staff, leaders, governance, whānau and students, “what does a successful school look like?” and “what are the factors that contribute to this and how do they influence each other?” Another reputable change model I would recommend schools research and apply to their own context by having staff collaboratively map out the change arena applied to their kura, would be Davis’ ‘Arena of Change’ (2008), a model that applies an ecological perspective to understand how teacher learning may be promoted for educational renewal, and clearly identifies that “teachers are the keystone speciesin the education ecologies of the twenty-­first century world”.

Pedagogical shifts
Successful change to better meet the needs of modern learners in today's and tomorrow's schools will require some dramatic shifts to traditional methods and practice of teaching. ‘New pedagogies’ (Fullan & Langworthy, 2014) will present plenty of challenges but excitingly, lots of opportunities to better engage and prepare our students for a world that requires people with inquiry and problem solving skills, who can effectively collaborate, innovate, create and communicate and who are culturally responsive, digitally literate and globally aware. Derek Wenmoth (2013) from CORE Education talks about the drivers for change being agency, connectedness and ubiquity and these are driving some of the pedagogical changes that need to occur so that schools become an environment that values and fosters student agency, collaboration, co­-teaching, self regulated and personalised learning. I would recommend that when schools are considering pedagogical shifts, they need to begin with their students ­ what do they need to know, understand and do to be successful? Secondly ­ what does our learning practices and environments need to look like to accomplish this? Finally ­ how will we know what impact this is having on student engagement, enjoyment and achievement?

Community, whānau and iwi engagement
When considering transforming education in your school context, it is imperative that all members of your school community are included on this journey and can participate in the decision making process ­ he waka eke noa:a canoe on which everyone can embark. One of the first steps needs to be identifying all key stakeholders ­ students, whānau, staff and Board of Trustees. As I identified earlier in the scoping process, it would also be recommendable to reach further abroad and look for other potential partners that could bring added value and richness to the transformation and future of the school through ‘civic engagement ­ the action through which citizens join in new conversations that have the capacity to alter the future, for example, libraries, community services­health, police, social services, local community businesses or other educational institutions e.g. Polytechnic or Universities.

Iwi engagement is also critical for all New Zealand educational settings. We know that traditionally we have not met the needs of many of our priority learners, specifically Māori and Pasifika tamariki and their whānau (MoE, 2013). Culturally responsive practices embedded into the culture of our schools will ensure that schools are upholding their obligations under the Treaty of Waitangi (1840) and are providing educational experiences that are authentic, meaningful and relevant for all learners, that build on their prior knowledge and cultural connections and acknowledges and celebrates diversity and the potential each child has within them to succeed. I would recommend that schools reach out to iwi and build a reciprocal and meaningful relationship with them. You will need their input and guidance around what culturally responsive practices should be normalised in your school setting and perhaps even establishing a ‘cultural narrative’ for your school, where schools can ensure design and practice will reflect the rich history of your local iwi and whenua. More importantly, schools need to address will be their tamariki, whānau and staff can support the iwi. A reciprocal relationship built on respect and ongoing support for each other will reap rewards for all and ensure the vision for Ka Hikitia (2013) of ‘Māori enjoying educational success as Māori’ becomes a reality in your kura.

Davis, N.E. (2008). How may teacher learning be promoted for educational renewal with IT? In J. Voogt & G. Knezek (eds.), International Handbook of Information Technology in Primary and Secondary Education, (507­520) Amsterdam: Springer

Fullan, M., & Langworthy. (2014).​​A Rich Seam: How new pedagogies find deep learning. Retrieved from­content/uploads/2014/01/3897.Rich_Seam_web.pdf

Jansen, C. (2015). Road map for change: presentation at lecture #1 of EDEM630 course. University of Canterbury.

Ministry of Education. (2013). Ka Hikitia­Accelerating Success 2013­2017.Wellington, New Zealand:Learning Media.

OECD (2012). Education Today 2013: The OECD Perspective. Retrieved from oecdperspective.pdf

Sinek, S. (2009). Start with Why: How great leaders inspire everyone to take action.New York: Portfolio.

Te Tiriti o Waitangi (1840)

Wenmoth, D., (2012) EdTalks; Ubiquity, agency and connectedness. Retreived from­agency­and­connectedness 

Monday, September 14, 2015

Celebrate and communicate Māori success!

One thing I have learned throughout my years in education is open and regular communication with your Māori community is a must if you want to establish a positive and meaningful relationship with them.

I strongly encourage schools to take up this wero but many ask for examples of this in action - so here is one we are trying at the moment.

As part of our commitment to increased and improved communication with our Māori community, this year at Cobham Intermediate, we have created 'Pānui Ako', a term report sent out to all of our parents via the school newsletter and our Facebook page and emailed directly to all Māori whānau. We also send copies to all school whanaunga e.g. Burnside Primary, our MoE Senior Advisor, BoT, our local hapū-Ngāi Tūāhuriri, our cluster co-ordinator and other members of our wider school community.

Pānui Ako is designed and written by members of our whānau advisory group, which is made up of several staff, Māori students and some of their parents.

We hope you enjoy learning more about Cobham and our amazing tamariki -koia kei a rātou!

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Chinese Language Week - celebrating our cultural diversity!

wǒ xuéxí pǔtōnghuà

I somehow got thrown in front of a camera to share a little bit about what Cobham Intermediate is doing to celebrate Chinese Language Week, but more importantly, to acknowledge and celebrate our Chinese students and families.  

Cultural responsiveness is one of our school focus areas for professional development and so far this year, this has been strongly aligned to working with our Māori and Pasifika communities, but with a 21% Asian student population at Cobham, how we welcome, support and celebrate the asian cultures and what they bring to Aotearoa is extremely important to me as an educator, to all of our students and of course to our wider school community.

I don't think I will be getting a call from Hollywood anytime soon though ;)

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Leadership and Change - a reflective memo

TASK: Write a reflective memo on 3 readings related to leadership and change, and introduce the focus of your case study and the models you have chosen to apply. 


This report discusses three new forces impacting on education today and going forward into the future.  The first force is 'new pedagogies' and relates to the new learning partnerships that develop between and among students and teachers when resources and digital tools become ‘pervasive’. The second force is 'new change leadership' which 'merges top-down, bottom-up and sideways energies to generate change faster and easier than anything seen in past efforts at reform'.  The third force is 'new system economics' where the essential and powerful learning resources and tools, which accelerate the first 2 forces, become more affordable for all.  The report gives the background to why change is happening globally, what the new pedagogies are all about, how they can be viewed in modern education and what the possibilities are if the new pedagogies model is developed in schools.

This report is an excellent resource for anyone in education.  It comes from a well respected and internationally known educator (Fullan) who has numerous highly regarded books and papers published in relation to key educational concepts within future-focused learning like change management, leadership, collaboration, digital tools etc.  The report is well structured and references a huge amount of research, both from international experts as well as New Zealand experts, which I found reassuring, to know there were links to our education system.  One of the most beneficial aspects of this report was the numerous school stories, including teacher quotes, statistics & data, tables of relevant information etc. as I was able to directly link and substitute these examples with some of our own information in relation to my school context.  I believe this report is an essential resource for education leaders and all teachers to read as it is engaging, informative and very motivating.  You come away for a better sense of the immediate need for change and the possibilities the new pedagogies model could provide us with.

This Core-Ed EdTalk video was filmed in March 2015 and is a recording of the presentation Michael Fullan gave to Canterbury leaders. During the presentation Fullan goes into detail about what quality change processes look like and links this to the international project he is involved in which includes clusters of schools from around the globe, including New Zealand.  The clusters are a part of a global collaboration called New Pedagogies for Deep Learning, which has the objective of bringing to life the new pedagogies model as described in 'A Rich Seam', in a variety of schools all over the world "creating a coherent suite of sustainable educational solutions, designed to achieve and support the strategic outcome of students reaching education success enabled by a technologically advanced society". 

I was lucky enough to actually attend this presentation in person. One of his key points is that the glue for successful change needs to come from leadership from the middle, where our principals and school leaders are participating and driving the change collaboratively - they should be a force for change but they must be a learner as well, where they can influence the climate of the school and create a non-judgmental culture, demonstrating how we are all learners, who make mistakes but value learning and are transparent about their own learning.  Fullan also shares the three keys to maximising impact, referencing Robinson's BES (2009) work and how leaders need to be moving towards the right drivers of capacity building, systems, pedagogy and collaboration. 

He acknowledges the unique context of education renewal in Christchurch as a result of the earthquakes and how the Ministry of Education's Investing in Educational Success initiative could dramatically change the landscape of education in our city.  He acknowledges that the key component of increasing collaboration and sharing expertise across a wider community of schools is a positive step and it will create many exciting benefits for our students however there are still things that need more thought and our leaders should be helping to collaboratively shape the best pathway forward wherever possible.

This video of Chris Jansen, a lecturer at the University of Canterbury was recorded at the Educational Leaders Forum 2011.  Chris explores the change process, and how to make this more of a positive experience. He describes the process of Appreciative Inquiry, which maintains a positive focus.  He shares the 4 Ds of appreciative inquiry and what the focus is for each step.  The first step is Discover - where leaders pair up, record a positive story from their own experiences and then share it with their partner.  Next is Dream - where the pairs now articulate their stories to the wider group, and all the participants pull together the themes. Following that is Design - which is where the strategic planning occurs, building on from the previous steps where the themes were identified of things that worked well and the final step is Deliver - which includes sequenced action planning, operational goals being established and the vision becoming grounded in the process.  

Chris shares examples of Canterbury schools and clusters that have used the Appreciative Inquiry process successfully and have also included the wider school community as part of this process.  This allows leaders to collaboratively take ownership and more importantly, 'authorship' (Breakspear, Sheahan, Thurbon, 2008) and has enabled leaders to collaboratively work on and implement a shared vision for their cluster of schools when they could be considered, in some aspects, competitors.

This video is a very easy watch and Chris explains things clearly and succinctly.  I particularly connected to what he was saying as I have a personal connection to both Chris and his work.  Chris is one of my lecturers for another course I am taking this year, EDEM682, and I have also been following the clusters and schools he discusses in the video so was already familiar with how they had been using the Appreciative Inquiry model to collaborate at leadership level.  This links beautifully with the Fullan video above 'Leading Quality Change' as it also references the need for inquiry and collaboration at a leadership level and how this can impact on the success and sustainability of change in schools.

So What?

Digging deep into these three excellent readings/resources, amongst many more and drawing on the findings of my review of the two change models; Davis' 'Arena of Change' (2008) and the Hall and Hord's CBAM model (1987), I have decided that the focus of my academic case study for assignment 3 of EDEM630 will be "What have been the benefits and challenges of implementing BYOD across Cobham Intermediate?  

As part of this case study, I will look closely at what the role of leadership has been throughout the pilot and whole school implementation phases and how this has impacted on what challenges and benefits have arisen for both staff and students at Cobham Intermediate.

I believe I will find strong links between the successes we have experienced and Fullan's findings in terms of what quality change processes look like, for example one huge success we have experienced has been the shift to using Google Apps for Education and Hapara Teacher Dashboard, an effective online tool to manage and monitor Google Apps for Education student activity.  One of the reasons this has been so successful is that it has direct links to many of the key drivers for successful change like enabling improved systems, increased blended (online and face to face) collaboration between staff and students, building capacity in terms of all staff being able to access and manage online student work and finally and most excitingly, this has been a learning experience for our teachers and leaders.  They were, and are still, all in the learners seat with this move and have been very transparent about how new this is for them, what challenges they are facing, what professional development they need and how they can tap into the strengths and expertise that their students may have to learn from them.  The Māori concept of Ako is common place throughout all of our BYOD journey.  Ako means both to teach and to learn and it recognises and values the knowledge that both teachers and learners bring to learning experiences.  This has been extremely prevalent in the area of learning with digital devices and it is exciting to see some of our teachers let go of their need to be in the dominant teacher role and embrace the learner role, while our kids lead the way forward!

Now What?

Being a part of the leadership team at Cobham, I want to look closely at how leadership has influenced the outcomes of our BYOD journey - what worked or did not work, how could things have been improved if different decisions had been made at leadership level and how has leadership decision making influenced other ecologies (Davis, 2008) within our context.

I would also like to examine what concerns were identified by staff in the early stages of moving to BYOD, if or how these were addressed and what their concerns are now, aligned to CBAM (1987), as we move towards the end of our first year as a BYOD school.

As part of my learning tasks and to assist with my case study research for assignment three, I would like to interview my principal with 3-5 carefully selected questions related to the BYOD journey at Cobham so I can apply the learnings from the interview to my findings for my case study.  This is particularly important as I only begun my job at Cobham in January this year and as with any major change to practice, the move to BYOD has been several years in the making, with several more to come I imagine.  The more we learn and discover about what benefits our students and staff are experiencing versus what challenges are being faced, the more leadership want to improve the current systems and processes in our BYOD strategy to ensure we are providing the very best BYOD experience our school community deserves.

I believe it would be valuable as part of my case study to draw parallels, where possible,
 between the successful elements of our BYOD journey and the links to the three forces with 'A Rich Seam' (2014).  I believe the three forces - 'new pedagogies', 'new change leadership' and 'new system economics' are intertwined with the rationale for BYOD and if we get BYOD right, it will be a great example of the new pedagogies in action.


Breakspear, S., Sheahan, P., Thurbon, D. (2008). Talent Magnets. Retrieved from 

Fullan, Michael. (2015). Leading quality change. EdTalk in Canterbury at CORE, April 2015.

Fullan, M. & Langworthy, M. (2014). A Rich Seam: How New Pedagogies Find Deep Learning, London: Pearson.

Hall, G. E., & Hord, S. M. (1987). Change in schools: Facilitating the process. Albany, NY: State University of New York Press.

Jansen, Chris. (2011). Positive change processes. Educational Leaders Forum 2011, Christchurch.

Robinson, V., Hōhepa, M., & Lloyd, C. (2009). School leadership and student outcomes:  
Identifying what works and why. Wellington, New Zealand: Ministry of Education.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Mapping your e-Learning journey


The e-learning planning framework is a tool to help teachers and school reflect on and evaluate their e-learning capability.  It can be used to support schools through a process of self-review and ongoing development and improvements, by identifying their current position and therefore indicating what their potential next steps may be.  There are five dimensions within the eLPF - Beyond the Classroom,  Learning and Teaching, Technologies and Infrastructure, Professional Learning and Leadership and Strategic Direction.  Running across the dimensions are five phases of 'e-maturity' that describe how technology is adopted and integrated into teaching and learning. The phases are pre-emerging, emerging, engaging, extending and empowering,  and "the phases not only describe development in technology integration, but also describe pedagogical development, from teacher-directed to collaborative, co-constructed learning" (Enabling e-Learning).

In 2010, I was extremely fortunate to be a part of the original CORE Education team who created the eLPF and can assure you it was a difficult task to create succinct but relevant indicators for each dimension, across each stage, that fit the NZ educational context but aligned to other national and international research.  We spent months researching prior to the consultation phase and Stephen Marshall's e-Learning Maturity Model-eMM played a huge part in informing our work, as did Hall & Hord's Concerns-based adoption model - CBAM and Mishra and Koehler's Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge - TPAK

What is really pleasing to see is the improvements to the original framework we produced.  The first version was lacking any real and meaningful links to whānau besides within the Beyond the Classroom dimension, mainly due to the restrictions in the size of the document, trying to keep things concise and not too lengthy.  Now, important links to whānau and the wider community are found throughout almost all dimensions.  What also was missing was the ability for whānau and students to engage and offer their perspective.  It is fantastic to see latest versions have made those improvements and the framework now offers the opportunity for students and whānau, as well as staff to complete it.    What is also exciting is when we first released the eLPF, it was in a document form only, released on Enabling e-Learning and linked to form the Virtual Learning Network (VLN).  It quickly became obvious that for this tool to be truly useful for schools, it needed a more in-depth, responsive way of administering the framework and allowing people to engage with it, collate the data and then provide an analysis of this data, as many schools were struggling with this part.

So What?
The development of the flexible and efficient eLPF online tool made the administration and analysis of the eLPF data so much easier and more valuable for schools as it provided them with an overall picture of where they were at and therefore, what their next steps might be.   I I would encourage you, if you are able to and haven't already, to look at the using the eLPF online tool at your own school.

It is also important to consider what questions may go unanswered.  What can the eLPF not offer or tell you?  Having been involved with the eLPF from its conception here in NZ and used the tool as both a facilitator of professional development, a teacher and now as a school leader I feel I can accurately identify what is still unclear for me.  The questions that I still have after using the eLPF is how accurate can you be when mapping you school position at each dimension against a phase of development?  I know for a fact, every time I have administered the eLPF, there is a huge range of responses, but to be able to position your school overall, the average tends to become the default.  How do you record this succinctly within your findings, without going into a blow by blow analysis of each staff member?

One of the biggest challenges I have seen happen often with the use of the eLPF in schools is the tendency for schools to travel backwards on their journey!  Quite often the first time schools administer the eLPF and teachers complete the online tool, the results can indicate that a school is working at the extending and empowering phases.  However, the next time the elpf is administered it shows a shift backwards, with the school now positioned at emerging or engaging.  This can raise a lot of questions for staff and leaders in particularly.  What I have found is the reason for this is that when staff start looking closely at what specifically is happening in their classrooms, what their next steps are and they start to research and plan changes necessary to better meet the needs of modern learners, teachers often find out that their original evaluation of where they thought they were was incorrect.  It often comes down to 'You don't know what you don't know', meaning that as teachers learn more about what e-capability looks like at the empowering stage, the more they realise that there is still a long way to go.  And that this is an ongoing process, often with a feeling of one step forward, two steps back.  This is precisely why the image below shows circular arrows to indicate that this is a process of inquiry, where you will often need to re-work, re-learn things multiple times.  It clearly shows that at each phase you may go around and around for sometime before finding your way forward.  It also highlights that at the beginning phases, pre-emerging and emerging, the focus for schools and staff can often be driven by the technologies but as you move through the phases, the decisions within a school about relating to the 5 dimensions become driven by curriculum learning needs rather than just about the technology.
Image retrieved from

Now What?
Prior to me working at Cobham Intermediate, they used the eLPF online tool with staff and school leadership in 2014 to identify where they were placed.  I would like to re-administer the online tool, bringing in members from our students, BoT and parents this time to add to the wider picture of where we now are.  I want to use this information and data to help us design our new strategic plan for ICT/e-Learning at Cobham Intermediate for 2016-2018.  I also hope that by re-administering the eLPF later in this term, we will be able to see some clear areas of shift for our staff and this will give them a good sense of achievement and confidence, being able to look back and see what impact the shift to BYOD is having on the development of teacher skills and knowledge and more importantly, the impact on student engagement and achievement.


Enabling e-Learning (2011) . Professional Learning: e-Learning Planning Framework. Retrieved from 

Hall & Hord. (1987). The Concerns-Based Adoption Model (CBAM): A Model for Change in Individuals.[Electronic version]

Mishra & Koehler. (2006) Technological Pedagogical Content Knowledge (TPACK). [Electronic version]

Marshall, S. (2010). A Quality Framework for Continuous Improvement of E-Learning: The E-Learning Maturity Model. Journal of Distance Education 24(1):143-166.

Saturday, August 15, 2015

My Personal Context through the lens of the CBAM

I have found myself coming back on several occasions to re-read, reflect on, delete, re-write, make some additions, delete again and then add some more content to my previous blog post 'Arena of Change at Cobham'.

As I immerse myself further into the learning activities and readings related to my study for EDEM630 - Change with Digital Technologies in Education, I find myself moving away from looking at all the reasons why the shift to BYOD has occurred at our school to wanting to focus in on what is actually happening in our classrooms as a result of the move to BYOD.

To gain a deeper insight into the classroom practice, we used Hall and Hord's 'Concerns-based Adoption Model' to ascertain where our teachers were positioned in terms of adopting the innovation of BYOD at our school.

There are three main dimensions included in the CBAM:
(see for more in depth information)

  • Stages of Concern = Seven different stages of emotion or feelings that educators experience through the process of change or implementation of a new initiative, programme or practice
  • Levels of Use = Eight behavioural stages that describe various behaviours and actions educators display as they adopt and implement the change
  • Innovation Configurations = Provides specific examples of what the implementation of the programme should look like at different parts of the continuum from best/ideal practice to least desirable practice

The reality is, the successful implementation of any major change in a school will rely heavily on the teachers who need to implement it.  And teachers are human, they all have different strengths, needs, skills, knowledge, beliefs and emotions.  At Cobham, our staff all had different attitudes towards the change to whole school BYOD programme, which obviously affects how they will adopt the change.

So What? 

Without going into any personal details, within our school we have a range of teachers across the different stages of concern and levels of use.  It is fair to say that all of our staff have moved past the awareness and informational stages of concern and are scattered across the personal through to refocusing stages.  It is the levels of use however that highlight to me how well the change is being adopted and what potential impact this is having on our students learning experiences in the classroom.

In relation to the effective use of digital devices in the classroom to engage students and improve students outcomes our teachers are able to self-identify where they feel they are and why in terms of level of use against the CBAM.  Some of the feedback from teachers has been that there are many different reasons that their level of use is at a particular stage, for example, their own personal experience with digital devices, changes in staffing e.g. new teachers are starting off at orientation, minor or major uptake by students in their own class and how reliable the devices have been for the learning opportunities they are being used for e.g. some classes have large numbers of iPads or smartphones being used but often children have been struggling with using these devices for online work in their Google Drive.

As a leader for the development of ICT/e-Learning in our school, I have been reflecting upon how I can best support staff through the process of change working towards a successful BYOD programme.  As I have learned more about the CBAM, I have come to identify that there has been a major hole in how this tool has been utilised within my personal context, my school environment. I have used the framework of the stages of concerns and the levels of use to guide the beginning of our BYOD journey and it has been an extremely useful tool to identifying what teachers are feeling, how they are behaving and where we need to head.  What has been missing is the development of innovation configurations to share specific examples of what effective BYOD practice and implementation should look like at our school.  When I realised what a crucial part of the model I had left untouched so far, I realised that this was the key to why some staff may feel stuck at level 4-routine or lower.  Even though we spent a lot of time growing a shared understanding of the why, when, where and how, we did not invest any time together as a staff to develop the what.  So teachers could basically be back in their classes with all the technology available, planning in place for learning experiences that include the use of digital tools but no clear idea of what a successful BYOD programme should look like.

Now what?
I believe that through this learning experience, one of the answers to my research question "What support needs to be provided to ensure a successful BYOD programme?" has now become clear.

To gain all the full benefits of using the CBAM as a tool that will support us to "gauge staff concerns and programme use in order to give each person the necessary supports to ensure success" (SEDL, 2013), we need to develop an innovation configuration map, which describes the different ways in which staff might implement BYOD at Cobham.  "Leaders use this component with staff to develop a unique set of expected actions and behaviours for each person" (SEDL, 2013) .  This was a key element that I had not put in place, spending more time and effort working through identifying staff stages of concerns and levels of use. Upon reflection, I can see that this has potentially had an impact on the success of the change and a shift in concerns, practice, attitude and level of use for our teachers.

A next step for myself as a leader of ICT/e-learning at Cobham will be develop a innovation configuration map for our staff.  This will mean that one piece of the puzzle in terms of answering my research question will then be in place.  I now believe that one element of support that needs to be in place, is to have an innovation configuration map in place that clearly identifies expected staff actions and behaviours of effective practice within a successful BYOD programme.


Hall, G. E., & Hord, S. M. (1987). Change in schools: Facilitating the process. Albany, NY: State University of New York Press.

Introduction to the Concerns-Based Adoption Model (CBAM). Retrieved from

SEDL (2013) Concern-Based Adoption Model: CBAM. Retrieved from

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Provisional essay plan

In preparation for the first assignment due in a few weeks for EDEM630, this blogpost is a provisional essay plan.

  • What is my goal for writing this essay?
My goal for writing this essay is to fully articulate and make sense of different change models and how my own school context and the changes that we are moving towards or immersed in, can been influenced or understood through the change models identified.  Ideally, one of my goals is to use the knowledge I have gained from understanding these change models to lead a more effective change process at Cobham.
  • What information do I need to include?
I need to include a wide range of relevant sources that will influence and support my own thinking in relation to my school context.  I will need to align these to the changes that are currently happening and are planned for in the future at Cobham.
  • How will the information be organised?
I will use the assessment rubric and outline of what is required to shape the content of my assignment.
  • What is the personal change context you would like to focus on?
The personal change context for my essay will be the introduction of BYOD to Cobham Intermediate and the support structures that are needed to ensure the most successful and effective BYOD programme possible.
  • What is the central thesis or key question you aim to answer drawing on the research on change with digital technology in education?
My topic of research is "What support needs to be provided to ensure a successful BYOD programme?"
  • What are the main themes you plan to address in the body of your essay (bullet points)?
 - What different areas of support need to be considered?
 - How has the issue of equity been addressed?
 - What have the key contributing factors been for other schools who consider their BYOD       programmes to be successful?
 - Where, who, when and how can schools access the necessary support needed to implement a successful BYOD programme?
  • What conclusions do you anticipate?
I anticipate that there will be several different areas that need support to be put in place, for example, staff and student professional development, community consultation and infrastructure.  I also expect that there will be a large investment needed by schools in terms of funding and time to ensure the successful implementation of a BYOD programme.

Monday, July 20, 2015

Whakanuia te wiki o te reo Mori 
Celebrate Mori language week

The kaupapa for Te Wiki o te Reo Mori 2015 is ‘Whngaihia te reo Mori ki ngmtua,' with the aim to encourage and support the language development of parents who can then whngai the language to their children.

Ngmihi nui ki a koutou katoa. Greetings to you all.
Te Wiki o te Reo M
ori /Mori Language Week takes place this year between Monday 27 July and Sunday 2 August. This special week provides an opportunity to celebrate and learn te reo Mori, helping to secure its future as a living, dynamic, and rich language.

I strongly urge and encourage you to really step it up and promote the use of te reo Mori at school during this week and hopefully beyond. 

Here are some practical ideas that I know all of you can try next week with your class & around home and school:

- Greet everyone in person, everyday in te reo Mori (kia ora, tnkoe/krua/koutou, mrena, ata mrie, ka kite an, haere r, e noho r) &/or change your email greetings/signature to te reo Mori using these google doc ‘Useful Phrases in te reo Mori' -
- Always start & end the day/session with our school karakia
- Sing a M
ori waiata everyday
- Learn these classroom kupu- & then create labels to stick them to the relevant objects in your class, use the Mori names of the objects when possible
- Sign up to Te Kupu o te Wiki
- Share with your class everyday a different Whakatauk- Kwaha- 
Ensure you and your kids know how to pronounce Mori names correctly (people e.g. Anaru, Hurihia, Awanui, Ngriki and places e.g. Akaroa, Rangiora, tautahi)
- Celebrate all the M
ori words you & your kids know already, you might be surprised - make a class list & identify them all e.g. kai, marae, mana, kaupapa, whnau. Discuss their meaning, practice pronunciation but most importantly, commit to using the kupu/words you already know in your everyday conversations
- Know these two documents inside out & use them as key resources for
planning, teaching and assessing te reo Mori at school 
          1) Te Aho Arataki Marau mte ako i te reo Mori Kura Auraki 
          2) He Reo Tupu, He Reo Ora
- Get to know your kids better by learning & sharing your own and as well as their own mihi
- Identify & discuss important M
ori values - Decide as a class how we can demonstrate, celebrate & promote these values at school
- Share some of the articles, videos, stories from the links below with your whole class
- If you need help, please just ask. I am always happy to help with pronunciation, support & encouragement!

Don’t just think about it - commit to it, krero Mori e! 
Kia kaha, kia maia, kia manawanui!

Resource page offering links, ideas and stories

Te Kupu o te Wiki

Virtual Learning Network Discussion

A digital kit of resources for Mori Language week – resources, websites, blog posts, you tube clips of waiata, lang, video, photos, Edtalks, whakatauk. Collaboratively put together by educators across NZ led by Tania Coutts (CORE Education)

Ngi Tahu Resources & Downloads 

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Arena of Change at Cobham

e-Activity 2.1

  • An introduction of your central topic of research, that is, your identified change with digital technology in education.
  • A description of the ecology which identifies the relationships between your change and the wider ecosystem
Figure 1. The arena of change with a successful BYOD classroom programme at Cobham Intermediate at it's centre.

My topic of research is "What support needs to be provided to ensure a successful BYOD programme?"

The change at our school in relation to this topic is that our school went BYOD at the start of Term 2 this year (2015).  We now allow and encourage all students to bring a device of their choice, that they own, to school to be used as a learning tool, when and where appropriate.  We also provide 5 iPad minis and 5 Chromebooks in every class to top up the amount of devices available for student use.

We believe that moving towards a 1:1 digital device, or at the very least 1:2 programme will enable access to technology anywhere, anytime within the school environment and beyond for our students and that this will enhance their learning experiences and enable learning activities that were previously not possible.

Figure 1 is the artifact that I am reflecting upon.  The 'arena of change' model above is created in relation to my own school context, Cobham Intermediate and is based on the work of N. Davis, 2015 and her arena of change with digital technologies.  I created this model using Google Drawings.

At the centre of this arena of change is our classroom environment, where the biggest change is visible-children coming to school with their own devices on a day-to-day basis.  We have all teachers and students, in ever class affected by this but to differing levels.  Some classes have a very high uptake, with almost 1:1, where others have less than 1/4 of students bring a device to class.  This, along with teacher confidence and competence, is enabling different degrees of device use in class. Less devices available has hindered some teachers from implementing activities that require or could benefit from device use.

Moving outwards within the arena, to a school level, the level of support provided by the leadership team, parents, BoT and PTA has had a direct impact on the BYOD programme as well.  The PTA, along with funds from community charities, have provided funding to purchase additional devices to cater for equity issues. Our BoT has supported the move to BYOD and developed sound policies and strategic planning around the roll out. Parents have been consulted with and communicated to throughout the whole process.  The leadership team is integral to planning and providing the necessary professional development needed for both staff and students to ensure new knowledge and skills are being developed.  This should also be in conjunction with what is happening in the BLCC - Burnside Learning Community Cluster, as many of these schools feed into our intermediate school or our kids move into theirs.  It is important to maximise the opportunities to collaborate and grow professionally as a staff internally and externally, across our wider PD networks, such as the cluster and online professional learning groups (PLGs) open to us, such as on Google +, Twitter, Facebook and the VLN, drawing on the expertise and knowledge of others with BYOD experience and skills.
"PD opportunities within and across schools often support change with ICT-related PD within the school and/or across it's networks of overlapping ecologies" (Davis et. al. 2013.)

In terms of the bureaucratic and political influences, the current Government has huge influence of what is happening within our school environment.  The Ministry of Education has fully supported and encouraged the effective use of digital technologies to support learning and the New Zealand curriculum gives us great scope for developing programmes that support the effective use of digital devices for learning.  "Schools should explore not only how ICT can supplement traditional ways of teaching but also how it can open up new and different ways of learning." (MoE, 2007, p. 36).

Teachers may have the scope to innovate in their teaching and learning programmes but are still accountable in terms of reporting against the national standards and meeting school student and E.R.O targets, which can influence when, what and why the incorporate the use of digital technologies into their classroom programme.  This has been been influenced hugely however since the government invested in the school network upgrade programme (SNUP), ultra-fast broadband in schools (UFBiS) and the Network for Learning (N4L).  Having the much needed infrastructure in place was critical in terms of the timing for when our school was finally in a position to move to BYOD.

Finally, the services available also contributed to whether we would go BYOD and of course, of successful the implementation of the BYOD programme will be.  When Cobham trialled BYOD in a small amount of classes last year, we also trialled GAFE accounts for all of the staff in the school and just the students in those classes and use of the Hapara Teacher Dashboard for managing the google account in those classes.  The success of both of these initiatives was such, it went without saying that when we rolled out BYOD across the whole school this year, all students now would move to GAFE accounts and all classes would use Hapara Teacher Dashboard to manage student work, with Rev It supporting us with the management of our network and hardware.

So What?
Seeing the ecosystem clearly identified and visible has been an affirming moment, as well as being able to articulate how the relationships between each layer has impacted on the change taking place within the classroom, or more specifically, impacting on how successful the change has, or has not been implemented and managed within our school and for our students.  Seeing the layers of change and how they interact developed my own understanding of the domino effect of change across the ecosystems-you can't get change happening in isolation, "Systems don't change because only one party takes action" (Fullan, 2014, p. 76).

Upon reflecting on how the ecologies exist and interact with each other in relation to my own school environment, it is apparent that our teachers are at the heart of the model and therefore at the 'coalface' for the change.  This is where the ultimate success of BYOD will be measured, in terms of what our teachers feedback about how the devices are being used, the uptake of BYOD and most importantly, the impact of student engagement and achievement.  This being said, the teachers would not have necessarily been able to make this whole school change without the support and direction from leadership.  Fullan (2011) comments that "...for a system to develop it must be led.  Supportive leaders become an essential component" (p. 3).  In our case, leadership has been driving this change from the outset, allowing for consultation with all key stakeholders,  professional development opportunities for staff, providing ample funding for school devices to top up availability in classes and ensure equity for all, as well as implementing a pilot programme so we could slowly introduce the change and evaluate its impact for our staff, students and whānau before making a decision about rolling this out across the whole school.  This meant that we were confident that we were making the right decision, based on what our teachers and students wanted and based on evidence gathered around an increase in engagement.  We are still investigating any direct links to an increase in student achievement results as this is harder to prove. In my opinion, the leadership support to make this change, for the right reasons and through a systematic, deliberate and well-timed approach has meant the initial stages of the change process has been successful so far.

Now What?
I would like to encourage others to view and reflect upon my arena of change.  I would love to receive some feedback as to other perspectives in relation to my model and any similarities or differences other school contexts face in relation to the implementation of BYOD at their schools.

As I become more knowledgeable about correct APA referencing and annotated bibliographies I may need to edit this post and correct any errors I may have made.

I have aspirations to share this model with the staff and leadership team at my school, or perhaps even better, work through a collaborative activity where groups, which could include staff, leadership, governance, parents, students etc could create their own change arena for our school.  Having mixed groups could broaden the perspectives brought to the table and identify different influences the others may not have considered.  We could then share the change arenas and identify the similarities and/or differences as well as the possible implications and opportunities.


Davis, N., Eickelmann, B. and Zaka, P. (2013), Restructuring of educational systems in the digital age from a co-evolutionary perspective. Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, 29: 438–450. doi: 10.1111/jcal.12032. Retrieved from

Description: This article recognises the increasing range of radical restructuring resulting from the co-evolution of education and digital technologies in school systems and related activity in the global ecosystem. It explains the co-evolutionary perspective of ICT in education, sharing learning from a case study of a rural secondary school in New Zealand and explores resistance to restructuring with ICT, the co-evolution of virtual schooling in the U.S and summarises the restructuring of schooling systems in the 21st century.

Evaluation: An excellent article that uses a wide range of evidence informed research to supports its statements. It clearly articulates and defines the relevant terms and describes how the interconnected ecosystems relate to each other however I also found it to be written to a high academic level, therefore it takes careful thought and consideration to be able to process and understand the concepts. This article has been essential to supporting my topic of research as I have used the arena of change model as the basis for understanding my own school context and the various ecologies and influences surrounding and impacting on my own school perspective.

Fullan, M. (2011). Learning is the work. Unpublished manuscript. Retrieved from

Description: This paper outlines some of the traditional forms for teacher development and the lack of success these have had in terms of making a real difference to improving teacher practice. The overall theme for the paper is how collaboration is the key to substantial and effective teacher development and that this collaboration occurs regularly and across various levels. It is in the day-to-day conversations, support systems, feedback and feed-forward and professional conversations that happen between and across staff, leaders, students and parents. This also extends outwards to between and across other schools, networks, organisations and collaborative networks. It details how innovation will come from teachers working in collaboration and leaders developing an interactive system.
Evaluation: This paper comes from a well respected and internationally known educator (one of my favourite experts to learn from). It is short and succinct, making it easy to read and process. The results are linked to Canadian and American examples but I still found the information relevant and applicable to my own experiences within the New Zealand education system. The key concept of collaboration is extremely relevant to our school context as it is a key focus across the school to develop and enhance student and staff collaboration. This also is very relevant given the move to Learning Community Clusters (LCC) and the Investing in Educational Success (IES) policy where our schools is now needing to collaborate across several schools within the Burnside LCC.

Fullan, M., & Langworthy, M. (2014). A Rich Seam: How new pedagogies find deep learning. Retrieved from

Description: This report discusses three new forces impacting on education today and going forward into the future. The first force is 'new pedagogies' and relates to the new learning partnerships that develop between and among students and teachers when resources and digital tools become 'pervasive' The second force is 'new change leadership' which 'merges top-down, bottom-up and sideways energies to generate change faster and easier than anything seen in past efforts at reform'. The third force is 'new system economics' where the essential and powerful learning resources and tools which accelerate the first 2 forces become more affordable for all. The report gives the background to why change is happening globally, what the new pedagogies are all about, how they can be viewed in modern education and what the possibilities are if the new pedagogies model is developed in schools.

Evaluation: This report is an excellent resource for anyone in education. It comes from a well respected and internationally known educator (Fullan) who has numerous highly regarded books and papers published in relation to key educational concepts within future-focused learning like change management, leadership, collaboration, digital tools etc. The report is well structured and references a huge amount of research, both from international experts as well as New Zealand experts, which I found reassuring to know there were links to our education system. One of the most beneficial aspects of this report was the numerous school stories, including teacher quotes, statistics & data, tables of relevant information etc as I was able to directly link and substitute these examples with some of our own information in relation to my school context. I believe this report is an essential resource for education leaders and all teachers to read as it is engaging, informative and very motivating. You come away for a better sense of the immediate need for change and the possibilities the new pedagogies model could provide us with.

Ministry of Education. (2007). The New Zealand Curriculum. Wellington: Learning Media.

Description: The New Zealand Curriculum document, alongside Te Marautanga o Aotearoa, is the key document which sets the direction for student learning in primary and secondary schools throughout New Zealand. It provides essential information and guidance schools need when designing and/or reviewing their school curriculum.

Evaluation: The New Zealand Curriculum document is viewed positively by many and is widely considered as flexible, practical, more child-centered and an improvement on its predecessor. Some express uncertainty due to the reduced prescription and increased professional autonomy.