Chrissy Hellyer – 1:1 in the Elementary Classroom

My first session on Saturday was with Chrissy Hellyer, who is an amazingly dynamic presenter and her Kiwi accent simply enhances her charm 🙂

Her session included a lot of showcasing of examples of using computers/devices/tools in the primary classroom, and I have already added the Fotobabble app to my phone and played with it a little since this morning!


Below are my notes as-is, however I will be thinking and reviewing things further as soon as my brain has recovered from the intensity of two days of



Chrissy Hellyer 1:1 in the Elementary Classroom

What are we hoping for?

TAIL standards – on wikispace in bands

Effective Learners, Effective Communicators, Effective Creators, Effective Collaborators, Ethical Citizens

tech helps you tackle the ‘global’ part of the standards/expectations

not a skillset, it’s a mindset
trivia quiz – attention-focusing activity

if you need to password protect it, it shouldn’t be online

tools, uses, tricks, applications, examples

Wordle getting-to-know-you exercise, analyse word frequency – does your wordle show the heart of your story? put up with story to be the advertisement; list of expectation, collaborate on google docs and make a wordle; blog

Dragon Dictation and Voice Assistant – programs to convert oral to written text

Wallwisher – some quirks eg can’t save an arrangement, but screen capture and go
two stars and a wish; before and after reflections; showcase wall

Chrissy puts everything on the class blog, only url the kids have to learn, then everything being used in class is linked via the blog.

Tom Barratt – Interesting Ways series

Buy Flattening Classrooms, Engaging Minds by Julie Lindsay and Vicki Davis

Jen Wagner – entry-level global projects

The power of Twitter and learning networks

Google – one stop shop – collaborative writing, surveys, presentations, drawing??

Train two people to be experts, they train two, etc etc

Digital desks…?  Haiku instead of Teacher Dashboard

fotobabble (has app) children record reflections over a picture; can’t export so play and screencapture each file, then add to personal eportfolios; class account with one username and password; have to teach a naming convention

prezi – starting to use it as an eportfolio

introduce new tool – everyone sandboxes and plays around, then do speed-geeking “did anyone find a way to do xyz?” person who answers becomes the expert

Big Huge Labs – go-to site for visual literacy; make a jigsaw of a picture, put up on screen and do the “what is this??” gradual reveal; magazine cover “what you need to know about Mrs Teacher”

Record voiceover in Powerpoint

Photopeach for slideshows with music already there; no audio but great for powerful storytelling; no download, but embed, or screencapture if you want the file; next level up is adding comments eg peer review
example shapes in the real world – Kinder/Grade 1 took digital pics, adults helped upload images, add captions; year 2 version captions show greater understanding of elements of shapes, and some comparisons
do a lot of planning beforehand, checklists to help them prepare for the task; the more effort before looking at the tool, the better the end will be (do I have a picture? is it clear? is it blurry?) write the script, do storyboards all the time

book trailers

grasp-task – backward by design

give feedback to app/tool developers good substitution tool for producing online magazines (issuu, scribd)

Go!Animate  good cop/ bad cop digital citizenship
(Voki, Xtranormal)

Pinterest visual bookmarking

audio recorder 3.2 (Mac only) use it for keeping running records. good for basics – record and go, M4A file, compatible with pcs and macs, but can’t edit without exporting it to Audacity or something. Good for little kids

Voicethread takes everything one step further into global collaboration
uses as tutorial tool – kids each demonstrate their technique eg of solving a sum

Tips: ovenmitts for experts!!! (keeps fingers off the keyboards)

down or around – for putting down laptop screens or turning around to remove screen distraction just for a minute or so

experts chart – 2 or 3 before the teacher

choose the right tool for the task

resist the temptation to do it all – play with the go-to tools, get comfy with them


Making Thinking Visible


Courtesy of Eileen Delhi CC-licensed BY-NC on flickr

Quiet session with Andrew McCarthy on making thinking visible – main takeaway (I would really like to have a better word for this, but for now I’ll go with the most common term) for me is the usefulness of tech in allowing students to record themselves talking out loud to demonstrate their thinking; basically screencasting as they work through something, or videoing a demo of a task or of writing on a whiteboard and adding audio commentary as they go or later in an editing program.

So what am I getting from this? Tech can assist in capturing the thinking at a specific moment in time – that can then go into a portfolio as pre-assessment or summative assessment, be their study notes, be a presentation… Then you need to determine whether that needs to be further shared by posting to a blog, wiki, Moodle site, shared on the screen in class, passed around the table, annotated by teacher or peers – which is of course dependent upon the purpose of the task.


Notes from session follow:

Making Thinking Visible

Strategies to develop deeper thinking in your classroom


Thinking first, tech is support


  1. Why is Thinking Important?
  2. From Substitution to Transformation
  3. Documenting the Thinking with Technology


Making Thinking Visible by Ron Ritchart, Mark Church, Karin Morison and David Perkins

Harvard Project Zero Visible Thinking


Why Thinking is Important?

acquiring knowledge =/= learning

William Glasser – you learn what you teach – some googling has thrown doubt on the origin of the quote, but it is often thrown around in education that the more modes you use to access information (see, hear, touch, move, demonstrate to another) the better your own understanding and retention

learning = developing understanding

understanding is developed through thinking


Examples that show learning/thinking: Observation, explanation, interpretation, evidence, viewpoints, perspectives, form conclusions


You can’t rote learn an abstract idea *****I love this line!

>>but exams are too much about “show me what you know” – how much of that is determined by curriculum constraints and needing to prepare students for external examinations?


Moving through the stages of technology use in the classroom:

  • substitution> augmentation> modification> transformation

Tech as tools to support and document thinking: demonstration task where students are given a geography concept (river valley erosion at different points along the river) and asked to locate pictures (viz compfight, flickr etc) that illustrate each type of erosion, create slides in Keynote or Powerpoint, then record audio narration explaining how the picture demonstrates the specific features of that type of erosion, and export as QuickTime movie (or whatever format is available). Students are demonstrating understanding of the concept, and ability to apply knowledge to images and justify their choices.

Implementation: give them the template first to scaffold the learning, let them learn to use the tool


Screencasting apps:


ways to share – blog and comment, Moodle, screencast with tool of choice and share, record on iPads then pass devices around the table to share

process of coming up with a good example to demonstrate the concept is great thinking

Someone to look for: Jenny Magiera @MsMagiera


Back to start – when do the kids get an opportunity to really think in your classes? student-centred classroom, concept based, understanding by design

how can I document the thinking process – capture tools


RSA animates

Great for ESL kids – time to work on and be happy with their product – less pressure than stand up and talk presentations


Do these documents help me support the learner?

metacognition – how do we teach it? give them the tools to be self-aware?

what types of questions should I employ? – open-ended

Metacognition – do the kids choose to think?


*** New thought on this topic ***

It occurs to me that one place where the entire learning/thinking process is regularly documented is in the Art and D&T areas, where students keep portfolios documenting each stage of their major projects from initial concept through research, drafts, prototypes, testing, refining, and final products – this could be a place to look for examples of what we can document in other subject areas

Friday morning at Learning 2.012


What is this about?

Challenge – ourselves, our ideas, our views on education/technology/pedagogy

Connect – with people, with ideas

Conversation – talk with people, feel free to pursue a topic


Action Research – take on something here and follow through in your school, then share your results/ observations on the Learning 2.012 site

idea + you network = change in your school

Student learning has changed – has your classrooom?


Traditional PD vs Contemporary Professional Learning 

 one size fits all vs differentiated

event vs process

extra vs embedded

mandated vs self-directed

The Consultant vs Local Talent

Large group vs Individualised

Efficient vs Effective

Solitary vs Social


How to move from Traditional PD to Contemporary Professional Learning at your school?


Join the Group Action Research

Julie Lindsay – A Global Journey

She has worked in some amazing places, and found ways around the challenges of locked computer labs, devices being illegal, religious and cultural issues to be sensitive to ; Global Flat Classroom Project, from inception to current model – the virtual connections and the face-to-face conferences


Be Open To Alternatives

It’s cool to be ‘flat’ – you must connect, however you make it possible

If you aren’t doing it, it’s not happening (Friedman)


Jabiz Raisdana

Authentic Student Blogging Journey


I believe in the possibility of space(s) – space can affect how people connect, share, work together

Starts with boring plain classroom, started making changes – sofa, plants, posters

Asked children to bring money to buy plants – now have a plant station that the children really own and care about.

Students relaxing with computers on sofas, apparently with instrumental Beastie Boys tracks playing

Tech should be the last thing you notice – all those C words – connect, collaborate etc are the important stuff

Where’s the rigour? Discussion Guidelines – students have found pictures to represent what each rule is

Class blog: clue: a space

It’s like The Table but online

elements of the learner profile


video “how to be alone”

Share each others work, the blogging they are doing

Guidance on how to comment on blog posts

Create a classroom space that works

Mirror that space online

Set protocols on how to interact


“Infrastructure as invitation not obligation” Bud Hunt Bud the Teacher

Create inviting spaces online and offline


“Articulated nuance of screaming into the void” Jim Groom

Allow students to find their own voice


“It’s valuable to be wrong in public.” Alan Levine

Help students to understand that this is exploration not perfection


This year seems to be special, after 7 years of exploring and developing this concept the students are taking the blogging and running wild with it



Dean Shareski – A Battle of Words

David Jakes – blog: Words Matter


Learning Framework – writing one for a whole district, bringing in stakeholders

rigour: strictness, severity or harshness etc etc etc

why is this word being applied to learning????


we should have ‘play’ as our word

“A new culture of learning” – book


should include ‘play’ in a learning tech document, but couldn’t have it so had exploration instead

where is the joy, serendipity, humility involved in play?


What do you mean by (insert buzzword here)? Enlarge the conversation, clarify our own positions and our understandings of the topics and issues


Sheldon – ICT director – conference app


Chris Betcher – Creativity in the classroom

Do schools kill creativity?  yes, with content-driven focus, time constraints

35 circles – force yourselves to keep going, generate more ideas…


Creativity is….


finding several ways to solve a problem

different perspectives

standing on your head


embracing change

willingness to try things out

doing it anyway

imagination and originality

We have never needed creativity more than we do now


Seymour Papert: we need to prepare students for unknown situations


book “Art and Fear” – quantity versus quality – the quantity group ended up with the best results, because they had the most opportunities to play, explore, practice


5 Aspects of Creativity

  • The Value of Play
  • Curiosity
  • Idea Starters
  • Offering Choice
  • Combining Ideas


The Value of Play

Evan Kidd – Psychologist

TEDx Sydney 2012


research into kids with imaginary friends, and free play

play based skills and narrative language skills – much more growth in a play-based skills


Google 20% time – generates maybe 50% of the revenue


Maker Faire – encouraging play and creativity


we grew up with a concretely manipulative environment – do we have this now?


(discussion time)

Cardboard challenge day


Newspaper fashion challenge

as a group we each chose jobs, not too much talking, fairly basic tools but lots of fun





Idea Starters

relationship breakup graph, graph your favourite fruit, tell this story (pic of plane shot by arrows, pic of email request to not post photos on Facebook – prompts



Offering Choice

(paint pots picture – schools too neat – life is messy)


Mark Prensky – Verbs and Nouns work

teacher’s job – guide the verbs (communicate, design, inform, persuade etc)

students’ job – choose which noun to use (blogs, voicethread, keynote, tools)


but where does this kick in?

the more control you have the less control you have to exert

the teachers should be cruising and the students should be the ones doing the hard work


Combining Ideas

make something new (typewriter with sheet music emerging)




Modify (worth looking up SCAMPER technique)





borrowing is not stealing

Cubism – trying to show multiple facets and viewpoints all at once

TS Eliot – good poets steal, great poets copy (?)


talk on copyright vs CC


“creation requires influence”

“we stand on the shoulders of giants”

youtube: everything is a remix + copyright criminals


“overprotecting intellectual property is as harmful as underprotecting it” – quote from Judge Alex Kozinski


noun scramble pick one and match with another person – combine the two ideas into something new

Friday morning at Learning 2.012

What is this about?
Challenge – ourselves, our ideas, our views on education/technology/pedagogy
Connect – with people, with ideas
Conversation – talk with people, feel free to pursue a topic

Action Research – take on something here and follow through in your school, then share your results/ observations on the Learning 2.012 site

idea + you network = change in your school

Student learning has changed – has your learning?

Traditional PD vs Contemporary Professional Learning

one size fits all vs differentiated
event vs process
extra vs embedded
mandated vs self-directed
The Consultant vs Local Talent
Large group vs Individualised
Efficient vs Effective
Solitary vs Social

How to move from Traditional PD to Contemporary Professional Learning at your school?

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