People have been asking me how I am enjoying being back in the classroom after a year out and about seeing the world and working with teachers instead of eight and nine year olds. Generally I am enjoying being back in the classroom but had forgotten the hours that classroom teaching needs to keep all the balls juggling in the air.
I do miss the adult conversations and the variety of being in a different place and working with different people each day but learning opportunities that we have been having lately at school keep me connected with people and places outside the walls of my classroom.
We also worked collaboratively with Myles Webb’s class at Melville Intermediate in the Waikato. A couple of keen students at Appleby had taught themselves how to use Pivot to make simple animations. I follow Myles through Twitter and his kids were keen to learn how to do it as well. We set up a session using Skype for audio and Adobe Connect Pro‘s screen sharing capabilities. Because Pivot is a Windows app and we are an Apple School I used my personal MacBook Pro laptop with Parallels (thanks Ben) to screen share. Children were able to see what George was doing with Pivot at our end through sharing our desktop while he was explaining what he was doing using Skype.
The session went exceedingly well and both groups enjoyed the challenge of the exercise.
It is very powerful for young children take control of their learning and make meaningful connections to ‘expert voices’ of a similar age to learn from one another.