I’ll have a new role in 2011. Teaching and Learning Coordinator. I love the title because those are the things that matter to me. I’ve always been a teacher and never aspired to be any kind of head. I’m not interested in admin, budgets, management or dealing with complaints. I care about learning. And next year I’m going to try and change its face…
Most of my own learning in the past couple of years has come from online interactions. Through conferences, blogs, Twitter, Skype… I have made some wonderful connections and broadened my thinking enormously. I have shared ideas about teaching and learning with educators on every continent. I have interacted with interesting people who have made me think in different ways about big ideas in education, about the world and about myself.
While it’s tough for me to imagine not having my own class, I hope I can make a bigger difference in my new role. What’s taken place in my own learning will apply to students too. I know the days of just learning in a room with walls are over. Just as I have expanded my learning sphere, so can they…
Last week I thought it was exciting that some of my Year 5 students were teaching Hebrew to a 15 year old in Colorado. The fact that a group of Year 6 students were coming to talk to kids in India at lunchtimes was amazing. This week, it’s becoming ordinary. We’re getting to used to it! Both groups had conversations today and they are beginning to take the lead themselves. I try to stay out of the way as much as possible.
It’s a model for what learning can look like. Should look like. I’m hoping gradually it will become commonplace. Groups of students learning from and with other kids anywhere in the world. Learners on different continents sharing, debating and discussing. Kids communicating and collaborating across the globe.
I asked Manish at the SOLE in Maharashtra why he’d enjoyed talking to the kids in Australia. He thought for a minute, then typed ‘We have a common thing which is talk freely with another childrens’. Indeed.
And it’s not even difficult to achieve.