Last week saw the exciting launch of Microsoft NZ’s first series of the 21 Steps to 21st Century Learning Workshop. We are so excited to announce that both the Wellington workshop (held at Scots College) and the Auckland workshop (held at Botany Downs Secondary College) were a huge success. Over 50 educators in Auckland and 30 in Wellington attended, ranging from Principals to teachers and ICT Directors.

The workshop worked through 5 Phases that outline the Design and Deployment Guide to 1:1 learning:

  • Phase 1 – The Compelling Case for Change: Create a solid foundation for a 1:1 initiative, with a clear vision and actionable, measurable goals.
  • Phase 2 – Redesign Learning and teaching: Focusing on rethinking and redesigning all aspects of teaching practice and the learning experience, based on the information garnered and ideas developed in Phase One.
  • Phase 3 – Lead the Shift: The vision and goals have been set. It’s time to turn the vision into reality, and theory to practice. This phase develops strategies in the key areas of stakeholder engagement, financial models, equity of access, community buy-in and teacher professional growth to support your initiative.
  • Phase 4 – Manage Implementation: Once all the strategies for change are in place and being put into action, schools are ready to plan the actual 1:1 implementation.
  • Phase 5 – Evaluate Continuously: Effective evaluation of your initiative is the backbone of its success.

Bruce Dixon, co-founder and President of the Anywhere Anytime Learning Foundation, facilitated wonderful conversations around 1:1 strategies and 21st Century Learning. Focus was on the pedagogy that drives student outcomes and then the technology that supports that. Our feedback indicated that school leaders found the workshop very helpful in either setting strategy and/or deploying the 1:1 programme, depending on which stage they were at.

General feedback surrounding the workshop highlighted Bruce’s great depth of knowledge and his willingness to “tell it as he sees it”. Many attendees commented on the value of having their key decision makers attend the conference and emphasized the relevance of learning strategies for Principals and Senior Leaders. Those who were in the early days of developing a 1:1 learning programme commented that they will look back on the course in the future and see it as a critical point for their school. One school leader, currently in the process of deployment, viewed the workshop as an “oasis” to gather their thoughts and move their school forward in the implementation of a 1:1 learning programme.

All in all, it can certainly be said that the two days were immensely valuable for all attendees, no matter which stage and depth of knowledge they had of 21st Century Learning. Schools left feeling highly informed, confident and supported in their way forward and their understanding of the importance of the pedagogy.