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Nigel Coutts

Teacher Agency vs The Collective Voice - The Learner's Way - 1 views

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    With good reason, much is made of learner agency but the concept of teacher agency is important too. If we hope to build a profession in which we are all self-navigating life-long learners, we must acknowledge the role that teacher agency plays. 
Nigel Coutts

We've always done it that way - The Learner's Way - 1 views

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    Experience shapes our understanding of the world and our responses to it. Our past influences our decision making and constrains our imaginations of what is and is not possible. Understanding this is a crucial step towards change; a first step towards discovering a better way to do things. Until we understand how our experience is limiting our imaginations we will continue to be restrained by the way things have always been done. 
Nigel Coutts

More than knowing the right answer - The Learner's Way - 3 views

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    Being wise is about so much more than knowing the right answer. Indeed, it can be argued that knowing the right answer can be an obstacle to learning and understanding. As we move further into times where knowledge is ubiquitous and yet truth is increasingly hard to find, merely knowing the right answer can be an impediment. 
Phil Taylor

Fighting the battle of copy/paste cheating | Ditch That Textbook - 1 views

  • Focus on “learning” instead of “activities”
  • You have to be willing, as William Faulkner said, to “kill all your darlings.”

    You’ve loved those activities for years. You’ve refined them and gotten really good at assigning and grading them.

Nigel Coutts

Our curious ideas about intelligence - The Learner's Way - 0 views

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    We have some strange ideas about intelligence, many of them are wrong. Some of our ideas can have a damaging effect on the people we label as intelligent. When we look at some of the research behind intelligence we find that our assumptions based on what we were once told about it need to be updated. 
Nigel Coutts

Wrapped in Cognitive Cotton Wool - The Learner's Way - 2 views

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    The dangers of making learning so safe and so easy it lacks any real sense of challenge. When we do this we deny our learners the opportunities they need to learn from mistakes and grow their minds. 
Nigel Coutts

Making the best use of our time with Google Forms - The Learner's Way - 1 views

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    Teachers are a busy lot. We are a profession whose workload seems to be forever on the rise and as much as you do, there is always more to be done, more to be learned, new challenges to be surmounted and exciting new opportunities to be explored. For all of this it is important to make the most efficient use of the tools we have at our disposal. Google Forms can help. 
Nigel Coutts

Home Delivered vs Home Cooked Learning - Who's in the driver's seat? - The Learner's Way - 1 views

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    Do you like your learning 'home delivered' or do you prefer it to be 'home cooked'? Is learning something that you are the driver of or is learning something that happens to you? 
John Evans

21 Ways to Check for Student Understanding - InformED - 4 views

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    "The ultimate goal of teaching is to do just that - teach, not stand up in the front of the room and talk. But sometimes it's easier to talk than to teach, as we all know, especially when we need to cover a lot of material in a short amount of time. We hope students will understand, if not now then before test time, and we keep our fingers crossed that their results will indicate we've done our job.

    The problem is, we rely on these tests to measure understanding, and then we move on. Few of us take the time to address weaknesses and misunderstandings after the tests have been graded, and by that time it's too late for students to be interested. This means we need to rethink how we approach assessment during class.

    The most effective way to test student understanding is to do it while the lesson's still going on. Asking students to fill out a questionnaire and then correcting misunderstandings during the next class period won't work because students have already moved on. You've got to take advantage of the moment. If you hope to spend the majority of your time getting through to students, and not just talking, then understanding must be measured and dealt with as soon as the first frown appears on a face.

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Nigel Coutts

Managing the pressure of the 'difficult' class - The Learner's Way - 4 views

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    Sometimes, it seems the class you are teaching is more than you can cope with. The truth is all teachers face times like this. The sad part is that many good teachers decide that the best move for them in these times is to leave the profession; a trend we need to fix. 
Nigel Coutts

Getting creative with our learning spaces - The Learner's Way - 4 views

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    Unfortunately, we are not all blessed with expansive classrooms which can readily accommodate a diversity of learning zones. The challenge becomes one of creatively using the space and furnishings you have to create flexible spaces.
John Evans

Can creativity be taught? | eSchool News - 2 views

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    "As we look at future jobs and technological advancements, having creativity is essential in the workplace. Robots and AI will be able to handle many tasks, even replacing some types of jobs, but we will still need creative thinkers and designers to move ahead globally. As educators, how do we ensure that students learn this skill in our curriculums? Can creativity be taught? Why are some people more creative than others? If you tell students to be creative, do they even know what it means or where to begin?"
Nigel Coutts

A culture of innovation requires trust and resilience - The Learner's Way - 1 views

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    Two quotes by Albert Einstein point to the importance of creating a culture within our schools (and organisations) that encourages experimentation, innovation, tinkering and indeed failure. If we are serious about embracing change, exploring new approaches, maximising the possibilities of new technologies, applying lessons from new research and truly seek to prepare our students for a new work order, we must become organisations that encourage learning from failure
John Evans

25 Teaching Tools To Organize, Innovate, & Manage Your Classroom - 2 views

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    "Over the years, many of us have personally experienced the growth of technology in today's classrooms.

    Instead of taking notes, students are now occupied by surfing the Internet, scrolling through Facebook, and messaging their friends on their smart phones, tablets, and laptops. Instead of focusing on the instruction, teachers are constantly required to interrupt class in order to remind those students again and again, that class time is for learning, not texting. However, as today's students are using more technological devices, it is imperative that teachers have access to the resources to keep pace with the growing tech culture.

    The use of smart phones, tablets, and other tech items in the classroom do not necessarily have to have a negative impact on student achievement. On the contrary, the increasing accessibility and growth of technology presents teachers with the unique opportunity to take advantage of those once distracting gadgets, and use them to facilitate academic achievement in new and innovative ways. In this capacity, teachers do not need to be constantly fighting for student attention, but can freely accept it, by introducing a new educational environment that will automatically encourage student participation.

    Below are some resources that teachers may find useful when attempting to implement technology into their classrooms, separated by 5 common areas that are increasingly important for teachers, and for an effective learning environment-Organization, Project Based Learning, Class Management, Presentations, and Assessment.

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Nigel Coutts

Change and why we all see it differently - The Learner's Way - 1 views

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     If the young people of today are to thrive beyond the walls of the classroom they will need to be able to cope with a world characterised by volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity. The children of todays Kindergarten will enter the workplace in the fourth-decade of the 21st Century. We debate the merits of teaching 21st Century Skills and what they might be while teaching children who have lived their entire lives in that very century. The challenge is how will schools and individual teachers respond to this drive for urgent change.
Nigel Coutts

Starting the year on the right foot - The Learner's Way - 0 views

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    Across Australia students are returning to school. Armed with fresh stationery, new books full of promise, shoes that are not yet comfortable and uniforms washed and ready to go, students will be heading off for the first day of a new year. What do they hope to find and how might we make sure their first day back sets them up for a successful year of learning?
John Evans

Explicit Teaching in Problem-based Mathematics - The Learning Exchange - 1 views

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    "Explicit Teaching in Problem-based Mathematics offers a re-imagining of what it means to engage in "direct" instruction. Rather than a separate pedagogical approach, explicit instruction is an integral part of problem-based learning and instruction. Animation and video are used to feature educator moves that support students to "notice things they would not otherwise see." Think uncovering. Think making visible.

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Nigel Coutts

Becoming Learners: Making time for OUR Learning - The Learner's Way - 0 views

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    At the heart of all that we do as teachers lies the act of learning. Our hope is that our actions inspire our students to engage in a process that results in their acquisition of new knowledge, mastery of new skills and the development of capacities and dispositions which will prepare them for life beyond our classrooms. Increasingly our focus is on developing the skills and dispositions our students require to become life-long learners. We recognise that in a rapidly changing world, the capacity to take charge of your personal learning journey, to become self-navigating learners is essential. 
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