Ask the Connected Learning Advisory

Issue: Volume 95, Number 21

Posted: 21 November 2016
Reference #: 1H9d5V

The Connected Learning Advisory aims to support school leaders and e-learning leaders to integrate digital technologies into learning. While this support is primarily provided from a distance, the advisory also offers this support through a limited number of face-to-face, free, regional professional learning days in which school and e-learning leaders can come together to seek advice and build their networks.

The first Connected Learning Advisory Professional Learning Days for School Leaders took place in term 4, 2015. Over 100 school leaders and e-learning leaders attended in Whangarei, Hamilton and Christchurch for a day of collaboration, connection, challenges and personal learning.

The focus of the day was set through a short keynote presentation by Advisory project leaders Karen Melhuish Spencer and Ray Burkhill. The takeaway message was that schools are faced with huge changes as they navigate a world in which digital technologies are used every day in every way. Digital convergence provides us with challenges as well as opportunities to re-imagine learning in schools. In New Zealand our digital ecosystem and our national curriculum afford us an opportunity to transform schools to put the learner at the heart of our organisations.

Breakout sessions were held during the morning. These focused on strategic planning, leading professional learning and connecting with communities. Ways of using digital technologies were modelled and leaders were provided with the opportunity to reflect on their school’s practice and share ideas. A number of themes emerged during the day:

  • We are leaders of learning, not technology
  • We need to constantly link the use of technology to the purpose and vision of our schools, as well as the curriculum
  • We need to be inclusive and collaborative.

During the afternoon there was time for informal discussion and planning based on questions raised by participants and arising from the breakout sessions. These conversations were fluid and touched on many areas of teaching and learning. Some leaders made the most of this time to plan together and others enjoyed support and guidance from CLA facilitators in small groups or one on one.

Feedback from the days was overwhelmingly positive and the number of ‘what I’m going to do next’ comments from teachers was a testament to how useful they found the discussions. Comments included:

  • “​To leave with so many practical ideas and tools and plans makes me feel more positive about starting and continuing the process.”
  • “Facilitators were knowledgeable and easy to talk to and asked relevant questions to help with specific needs.”
  • “I will now be able to write up my charter annual plan with goals to implement digital technology to engage learners and improve learning.”

2016 professional learning days

The Connected Learning Advisory is also running free Professional Learning Days in 2016. These days will take place in North Otago and Southland during term 1, Gisborne and Hawke’s Bay during term 2, and Taranaki in term 3.

Term 1 days are:

  • Oamaru: Tuesday 5 April at Waitaki Girls’ High School
  • Gore: Thursday 7 April at Gore High School

You can register for the Professional Learning Days by following the link from the Connected Learning Advisory website

Contact the Connected Learning Advisory

If you have a query about integrating technology with teaching and learning or you want to suggest a topic for this column, contact the Connected Learning Advisory on:

Phone: 0800 700 400

Online form: TKI website(external link) or the CLA website(external link) 

BY Education Gazette editors
Education Gazette | Tukutuku Kōrero,

Posted: 8:17 pm, 21 November 2016

Get new listings like these in your email
Set up email alerts