An aside: Imposter Syndrome

The other week, Samson Ootoovak, a coach at DevAcademy, posted in EDA’s slack channel a link to a video of  Joshua Paling speaking about the Imposter Syndrome. Screen Shot 2015-05-02 at 4.44.22 pm

Good talk, worthwhile watching whole 20 minutes.

The following week I as in touch with Rachel Collingridge, who works at Powershop, I was asking her if she has suffered from imposter syndrome and ideas on how to deal with it. She also sent me the link to the above video of Joshua as well as to his slides and some extra stuff that he didn’t get to talk about in the video.

On Joshua’s site, he links to Alicia Liu’s blog. She has written a number of posts about impostor syndrome which a well worth a read.

It is refreshing to read about what others in the tech industry think and feel about imposter syndrome. Makes me feel better about where I am at and the feelings of doubt that I have.

I read all of this stuff a couple of weeks ago and since then have been working hard on the last two weeks of EDA. Sitting here now, I know that I haven’t had as many moments of feeling like an imposter or sheer panic as in previous weeks. I think this is partly due to realising that the majority of people learning to code and who code for a living, do also suffer from feeling like an imposter. And that it doesn’t stop once you are no longer a beginner. So rather than worry too much about it I’m just going to get on with learning.

Challenging my teaching #hackyrclass

My first blog post on #hackyrclass – setting the scene received a tweet from @NZPEteacher asking me what my end goal is by hacking my classroom.

I have had a bit of a think about this and to be quite honest I started without having concrete, clear goals in mind. It came out of reading people’s posts and chatting with a couple of other teachers at school and the boredom that I felt with teaching the way I was.

We, predominately, use a paper workbook (that we have created as a department) and a range of individual, pair and group activities based around a Health issue / unit. I guess a lot of the content is teacher driven and involves a lot of the teacher on the stage. I have gotten bored with teaching like this and I think with what Claire Amos and everyone else involved in #hackyrclass is attempting made me feel “safe” to try something different. I have put safe in quotes as it isn’t exactly safe changing it up like teachers all over the country are with #hackyrclass but it has given me the push to step outside my comfort zone!

Coming back to the end goal, so I thought with me getting bored I am sure the students are, so I am hoping for more engagement. I am actually seeing this from most students already. I also probably need to say that a goal is that they learn what they need to about Drug Education, so as I fill the requirements of meeting the curriculum. I will need to look at this closer though. Others goals that I hope to see are higher order thinking and learning happening that is worthwhile and authentic. Getting completely away from students just filling in pages in a workbook.

I haven’t been doing much planning for the lessons. I have a loose idea of the outline for a lesson but not much structure. I think this allows for me to be more flexible and means that students are not constrained by my thinking. This isn’t the best for all students though, as some do need structure. During the lesson I am dealing with this by checking in with groups and those that are stuck or aren’t doing much I have a chat with and guide them to a point where they are keen to keep exploring ideas.

One thing I am thinking about doing, as I suggested to the class when we were discussing growth mindset, that I should let other staff in the school know what I was doing and invite them to come and visit! This rather petrifies me – so might be a good idea to run with it? I would be interested to know what others think about this idea?

where it happens

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#hackyrclass – setting the scene

Today was my second lesson stepping up to the #hackyrclass challenge. After reading Steve Mouldey’s blog and having a good chat with a couple of colleques last week I decided today to lay the ground work with my class. I felt I needed to make it clear to them what I was trying to do and why.

I created this Google Presentation to explain Growth Mindset and co-construction. I was intending to do enquiry learning as well but as I only came up with the idea of the presentation the period before the class I ran out of time! Whoops!

They got it! Some more then others but definitely felt they understand what I was trying to explain. Some seem really excited about – these students will really push themselves and me. Some will challenge themselves but might not go all out – they will still learn a lot and grow their own learning. Some, I think, aren’t too sure what to make of it and it will be interesting to see how they go.

What was really exciting for me was that I had a short but in-depth conversation with three students about the moral and social aspect to do with drugs / alcohol. I am excited about what learning will happen.

I also felt really uncomfortable at one point when I was talking about the growth mindset – I realise (I said to my students) that maybe what I needed to do was let the other teachers at school know what I was doing and invite them to come and visit my classroom. We will see what happens with this idea!

Pretty excited so far about #hackyrclass.

Quick #HackYrClass post

So have been watching all the tweets and blog posts following Claire Amos’s initial post about hacking your classroom.
Didn’t think I was really going to have enough time to get involved with it (madly busy learning python!) but sat down with two colleagues who are doing some hacking as well and came up with how I could do it.
I teach PE and Health and we have 1 lesson of health a week. We still use a workbook set up and I often get pretty bored taking those lessons (not sure you could really cool it teaching, maybe preaching!). So I have decided to hack my Year 10 Health class. Upcoming unit is drug education and I am throwing the book out the window.

It is great that others are blogging about what they are doing. Someone I just followed that teachers science had some good ideas which I am going to hack!
It has also been great having a couple of people at school who are keen to do this as well, as good to bounce ideas of each other

Traffic light self assessment system – geddit?!

I’ve just found this site – http://letsgeddit.com/ – that seems a good tech replacement for the old traffic light paper system. A few year ago when I was teaching Year 11 Physical Education and anatomy and biomechanics, another teacher introduced me to using the traffic light system. You would have a sheet with terms or questions on one side and a column on the other and students needed to colour the empty column in with the colour that reflected how well they understood the term or question – e.g. red if the didn’t at all, green if they were sweet with it.

I am no longer teaching anatomy or Y11 PE but I straight away thought I could use this in Digital Technology, firstly with my juniors learning Scratch – to get a quick gauge of those that have used it before or not. And as we progress through the teaching and learning, checking in with where they are at with understanding Scratch as well as where they are at with their project. Oh I think this could work quite well. And with seniors learning HTML and programming etc.

Here is the page on how to get started – http://letsgeddit.com/public/articles/how-do-I-run-my-first-lesson.

I will have to have a bit more of a think about how to use in Physical Education and Health.

Have you come across geddit? How do you use it?

Keen to hear what other people are using – do you use something similar? If so, what and how?

geddit

My Goals for 2014

Goal 1: integration of student BYOD devices into learning activities in Year 9 Health with student choice of what, when and how to support their own learning.
This has started well and isn’t too stressful as only have one health lesson a week! And nearly every student has their own device and we have enough laptops in PE to be able to cover those that don’t or might forget. The one issue that I have come across so far is students on tablets, particularly iPads and them not working so well with Google Apps.

Goal 2: to work closely with HFT to consolidate the Level 2 Digital Technology programme with the aim to increase student numbers at L2 and strive to be given a L1 DT course in 2015.
Working well with new assistant HOD so far!

Goal 3: learn Python so can teach effectively and engage students in this learning area.
Starting this soon by doing the Canterbury University COCS121 paper! Will be a busy semester!