Hive learning

I was introduced to the term “hive” this week, in the context of solving a business problem by consulting the “hive wisdom”. I think the terms “hive thinking” and “hive learning” make sense in a classroom and I decided to try and facilitate some hive learning (for a Year 10 class) via the Google Classroom Ask facility. The question posed was “If you have a problem with your HTML… how might you go about solving the problem?” I then asked students to either seek clarification or indicate which answer was the most helpful. one example below…

Overall it was a pretty useful exercise. Answers ranged from use F12 to examine the script to accessing W3C schools web site. One student even promoted “formally giving up “. I was pleased to see one option from last year was not mentioned… Cry

I found this to be both an efficient and effective result. Any problem-solving techniques the students did not identify I could solicit from them. Any problem-solving techniques I have not encountered previously I could share with future students. (Ako ie reciprocal learning in action!)

Some other points of interest:

  1. How students represent themselves online (avatars/images).
  2. Exposing their thoughts to others ie all students see all answers once they have answered the question themselves. The classroom culture has to be consistent with this approach ie students feel safe answering this type of question publicly.
  3. Path of least resistance… no real critique of answers (the environment may not be conducive to this – yet).
  4. You cannot be a spelling/grammar checker.


Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

#MeToo… setting expectations at achool

Good to see that expectations of appropriate behaviour in the workplace are being “reset” in New Zealand. And as teachers, we have the opportunity to reinforce these expectations with our students.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged | Leave a comment

Monitoring and blocking student Internet use

I am managing a trial of Linewize at Wellington East Girls College, a product designed to help schools and teachers understand and manage student internet use across all devices and browsers. WEGC has implemented Linewize to:

  •  improve learning at WEGC ie keep student attention in class rather than being distracted by social media
  • fulfil a duty of care obligations to students. Some students do not have the required skills or knowledge to safely navigate and use the Internet.

As expected most of the implementation challenges relate to people, policy and procedures, the technology is relatively straightforward… For example:

  • The reporting function(accessible to authorised users) can give quite a lot of detail regarding what sites students (and staff) have been visiting. Who has access and under what conditions to this information?
  • Privacy Impact Assessments(PIA) are not typically carried out in schools, as far as I can determine. How come? I have initiated enquiries regarding the existance of any relevant PIA’s with the Privacy Commissioner.
  • Students concerns over privacy – I held a lunchtime session for interested students to discuss the implementation of Linewize. It was good to see students thinking of these issues.

The trial runs till the end of Term 1, then we will make a decision.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Skype fraud and Vodafone incompetence…

I had over 100 Euros debited to my Skype and subsequently Paypal account without request.  I just happened to notice 4 emails at 11:30pm showing the fraudulent transactions. How did this even happen?  I contacted Skype and they took all of 30 seconds to reverse the amounts… Which leads me to think ” Has Skype been compromised?”. I not sure they would say so…

I have changed my password of course, and also removed Skype authority to debit my Paypal account, but I must say it leaves a bad taste in my mouth.

It reminds me of Vodafone – promised a no charge install – charged me… and then when I rang up 20 seconds to reverse… makes me suspicious. And this is not the first time!

Got to teach students not to trust these organisations… I wonder how many people are getting ripped off?

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Mistakes happen…

Mistakes happen. Can you spot the error? Took more than 12 months to pick up – may have been there from Day 1 ie a few years ago. This will make a good teaching point for DT classes on the role of Quality Assurance and Testing.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , | 2 Comments

Views expressed are my own

Some people have asked me if I allowed to write a blog that includes views on Education. The views expressed in my blog are generally my own and the answer is yes, providing I do not bring my employer into disrepute…

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Déjà vu – reporting tools

Many years ago…I recall using Crystal reports for data analysis and reporting purposes. Really useful for systems built in isolation that are strongly aligned with business process and data structures ie systems built for data entry and compliance but not analysis…

Things have improved but I was bemused to find myself using assay3, a reporting tool over the top of KAMAR, our student administration and management system. Built to support what teachers actually need/use it brings the KAMAR data to life. Great, but begs the question “How come KAMAR was not designed to provide the same if not better functionality?”. I expect there are good reasons related to specialisation, comparative advantage etc… still without assay3 a lot of valuable teacher time could be wasted.

Now if only someone could build an equivalent KAMAR front end for easy data entry of Pastoral data …

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , | Leave a comment