Sharing some theory ideas from my PLN

Just wanted to blog and share some thoughts from two of the people I follow in my daily readings through Feedly.

First is dy/dan and real work vs real world for engaging students. I generally try and make content ‘real world’ so there is a connection to the world and life after school, but was challenged to consider if what I ask of students is ‘real work’ or just abstract. Is what they do in class and for assessments of real value to them and their community, can it be used to make life better for someone, or provide solutions to real challenges.

Second is Seth Godin and ‘The wasteful fraud of sorting for youth meritocracy‘. I often feel aggravated to see students chosen for how good they are at the activity, while others who try hard miss out on the same opportunities. Talented students don’t deserve to miss out either, but we can and should aim to develop all students by celebrating positive attitudes and effort, and provide opportunities that encourages lifelong learning and participation.


Does social media change your brain

Interesting video from the ASAP Science guys this week on how social media changes the brain of users. Obviously need to look at the underlying research to make your own conclusions, but it seems plausible at least.

On a side note – I can definitely confirm having experienced Phantom Vibration Syndrome. My pocket feels like the phone is ringing at random times day and night but actually hasn’t – Weird.

Following from this I read an article on how technology is shaping human evolution at Make use of. Not going to push any personal beliefs but it raises some questions for reflection and thinking, about where we are going and whether we are ok or not with that.

The lollipop guy didn’t find me

Well I took the lollipop Facebook test tonight and watched as he didn’t find all that much, or a location for me. Don’t know where he was driving to then at the end of the clip.

I really can’t stand ‘friendface’ (as one of my favourite shows calls it) and only set up an account to follow posts at a school and complete a uni assignment, so all that shows really is a ‘name’, some really random posts, and 2 friends from the assignment who I’m sure use Facebook more than me anyway. I do however use other social networking sites professionally, which I’m sure are just as prone to revealing information about who we are, what we do, where we live, etc.

Unfortunately the reality is that no matter what you might do to keep your privacy, there really is no such thing with online social media. Eventually you will build a presence from being mentioned or tagged in friends posts which you cannot control, give away confidential information and history as connected apps are granted access to make our lives easier, or play that new game, and get located with exif data from photos and videos. Even this blog gives away information about me to anyone with internet access.

Increasingly it is also becoming harder to not be connected to friends or colleagues through social media, or have an online presence, but it should’t be an unreasonable expectation to limit who sees what you post or share online, and how that information is then used.


Well here is my certificate from completing the connect.ed online course and some thoughts on the modules.

Module 1 – The simulation responses were about what I expected but I had hoped to have some more options to influence the outcomes. There were times I wanted to add a comment or reply that I felt a student might make. Otherwise it was a good reflection of the pressure young people face, with multiple conversations going on all around them, inferring meaning and context from short or vague messages, or trying to keep everybody happy with them.

Module 2 – Some great ideas here modelling behaviours and attitudes to stand up against bullying and any messages students might find offensive or objectionable. It is really important to empower each other and encourage collective positivity.

Module 3 – Schools and communities have a huge responsibility to model and support appropriate and positive use of ICTs, through a planned and integrated way. Values and expectations need to be communicated clearly and supported to encourage student buy in.

Module 4 – Some good points in the last module to integrate learning experiences into units or work or lessons that promote appropriate use of ICTs and for relationships in general. We need to do more than just give the tools and rules.

Albeit a little dated, the message is definitley still relevant and necessary.

PD Certificate Connect.ed

Almost have everything on the list for Prac

Have packed:

– iPad/iPhone/extra iPhone – check

– chargers, adaptors and cables – check

– pens, markers – check

– photos to share – check

– printouts for mentor and school if needed – check

– map of school, timetable and school policies in cloud drive – check


– feedback and comments from previous pracs

– school website and newsletters

– travel route to and from school

To do:

– Meet mentor teacher and PE staff

– Meet students

– Have a great 3 weeks


Shout out to Adele for a nice pictograph of Postman’s 5 things making it easy to visualise and remember. Was thinking about Postman’s 5 this week while reading ‘A Guidebook for Social Media in the Classroom’.

The article compared the dangers of young people using social media compared to email and traditional letter writing. Of particular note was the progression of writing mediums and how each could inadvertently share private information with people we don’t know. Whatever the medium used, students need to learn and practice effective strategies and best practice to communicate with others.

The article also has some practical ways to integrate social media into the classroom.

What ICTs?

Like Rachel and others in the course I have found ICT magic to have a great deal of useful resources for teachers. I have needed to be creative and think out of the box to apply to HPE as most are aimed at other subject areas. This type of thinking has been good – learning to be open and adaptive with any ICT, to consider how it could be integrated to enhance student learning and not just be used as a tool.