I have completed the roll out of our new 6th Generation devices and change over to managed Apple ID's and Zulu as an MDM. We now have just two year levels with iPad mini's (Year 2 and 3, only one class with mini 1's so all others are able to use Apple Classroom). My next step is to collect in all International Student devices and complete the change over.
Last week I hosted a Teacher Only Day for Taupo Primary School hosting 27 educators in the Makerspace. Kim Horne (who I have mentored to facilitate the Makerspace attended so that she could see how these events can take place and she can hopefully host in the future). Thankfully we had brilliant weather and were able to utilise the deck area. The Sphero Battlebots station was highly engaging and teachers benefited from seeing how these devices can be used across all year levels. I applaud this school for diving deeply into creating a new curriculum that rather than divided into teaching traditional subject areas they will integrate and teach the whole curriculum through STEAM and the maker movement. I think this will be a real challenge as many of their teachers are very early on the ICT continuum and have had no previous experience with Maker or curriculum integration. I will watch their journey closely as I can see this concept as working brilliantly for us at TAKP. I wonder if our teachers would agree? I also wonder what measures will be put in place to ensure achievement data holds at a consistently high level? I can see this style of content delivery as being brilliant for the Year 7/8/9 age group but wonder if the strong building blocks needed in the Early Years can still be achieved?
Oh and yes, the MADE awards finalists were announced, so exciting. TAKP have done exceptionally well with a significant amount of entries making the top 5 in the country in every category in both the Year 1-3 and the Year 4-6 age groups. We will be celebrating every finalist in our own community at a school wide event after the offical ceremony as to make it this far, winner or not, it is a huge achievement. I continue to be in awe of what is possible when you weave creative minds, rich pedagogy and powerful tech!