Thursday, April 23, 2015

Developing Agency: Art

So as part of my developing agency journey, I tried an idea with art this week.

As part of my theory in action, learner agency or self-regulated learning is based on knowing what your goals are, putting yourself into the learning pit, fostering a growth mindset and failing forward by responding to feedforward(to name a few).

Because it is the 100 centenary of ANZAC we created art that was ANZAC inspired.  What would I normally do, as a single-cell, teacher directed, old-school approach to teaching art?  Find a lesson on Pinterest, get the resources ready, chunk the lesson - do this, then do this, model the technique then let the children have a go.

This sure sounded easier to organise and deliver.  The result?  28 of the exact same pieces of art - colours, shapes, techniques, media.

What I did instead?

I got black paper and white paper, red paper, crepe paper, paint, pastel, crayon, dye, indian ink, charcoal pencils, glue (I think that's it?).

I collected a few examples and spread them around the room.  Then we had a discussion about what artists do.  We came up with this:

- they react and respond through art
- they experiment
- they blend, shade, layer, mix
- they add detail and texture

The result?  Well see for yourself: 28 completely different pieces of art!

Leadership: Theory in action: MLE and Coaching Stances

We started off unpacking Karyn Gray's messages in her blog post: MLE - a returning fad?  Or the potential to transfer learning? And what a fantastic message Karyn brings up for schools who are implementing a Modern Learning Environment.  

The first we message we discussed was how 'courage' plays an important role in this shift in mindsets.  Teachers and leaders who are moving forward in this area show an incredible amount of courage despite resistance from parents, communities and colleagues!  (It's funny how students aren't a part of that list...).  

I think I need to stay strong and have courage to help teachers to develop their 'MLP toolkit'.  It is a highly effective approach to teaching and learning and has the potential to truly transform the sector.  

Discussing the notion of "play" during foundation years was our next point of topic.  We all agreed that play is an extremely important part of children's development.  It helps with the transition between early childhood education and school.

In the latter part of our session we focussed again on developing Leaders as Coaches.  Another quote opened the forum for reflection and dialogue: 

 "If you want it, coach it" - Guy Claxton