Monday, 5 August 2013

Learning Reflection Two

Kia Orana Katoa

This week is Cook Island Language week. The theme is Toku Reo, Utuutu `Ia: My Language, Nurture it.

This theme has been running through my SP4Ed mOOC-after not quite finding my fit in the first few weeks of the course I feel like I have found my 'language', and I certainly feel that the last week and a half has nurtured it.

Scenario planning is one of the most exciting tools I have encountered. Last year I was invited to be part of the Strategic Leadership for Principals Programme. This programme focused on the development of medium and short term strategy supported by a business mentor. The process required us to identify drivers, but the plan that was developed was very insular and localised without an awareness of major trends and drivers that may impact on our strategy. Effectively we developed a well considered but disconnected plan of action. The SP4Ed mOOC has enabled me to begin to contextualise this plan.

One area of particular focus for me was the impact of mobile computing on developing educationally powerful relationships with our community. My observation was that although many of our whanau did not have internet access at home, a growing number of them had smart phones. My thesis was that through the use of apps, we could engage our students and their whanau around mobile computing. My mentor was the former Chief of Staff for the corporate Vice President of Microsoft, so was able to identify technologies and trends, but it was difficult to predict just how these developments would impact on learning. Scenario planning provides me with the perfect tool to do this.

The process of developing the scenario matrix has also been a clarifying exercise for me. Collaboration and accountability had been trends we had been discussing at a leadership level for some time, but now being able to draw up four scenarios around possible impacts of these drivers. I am looking forward to preparing these and sharing this with key stakeholders at school.

On another point I am beginning to get real clarity around my research topic as I can see how a guardianship framework in regard to matauranga (knowledge and intuitive intelligence), and hinengaro (the mind and its processes). I see clearly how this distinction between ideas and the outcome of these ideas can align with the original intent of copyright laws, the particular intent that Creative Commons seek to restore.

Reading case studies of New Zealand schools that have implemented Creative Commons policies now bring into a very real context what we are trying to achieve on our school, and how this will impact teachers and learners in whatever context.
I am looking forward to continuing to shape my assignments, and I can see strong links between the two. I feel like the athlete who at the point of giving in found his second wind. The only criticism I have is that the second wind is not a warm one blowing across a beach in Rarotonga!
Beach Scene on the southern coast of Rarotonga, photographed by Marcus Gleinig, 15 August 2004

Scenario matrix

Uncertainty Matrix created using Graphics Hardware-my daughter's Smiggles! Lol.

1. Accountability
A focus on the use of Standards and assessment to lift student achievement. This driver is an uncertainty because it is unclear where this driver will take education. The move internationally is towards standardised testing and national measures. Will this trend continue at the expense of  deep, authentic learning? There has recently been a case where a commissioner was appointed in a school that refused to furnish the Ministry with their National Standards data. The punitive measures the Ministry are using to further their agenda are alarming.

2. Capacity
A focus on developing teacher capacity through developing new skills and identifying deeper motivations for performance. This is an uncertainty because it is unclear how standardisation will impact on this process. This trend is reliant on formative processes to raise student achievement through the learning-instruction-assessment cycle. Focus on developing teachers capacity to deliver a rich, authentic curriculum. This impacts on our context as we are attempting to balance the tension between teacher development and accountability.

3. Openness
Paradigm shift involving the use of online learning, and open access resources. Focus on collaboration across settings and modes of delivery. This is an uncertainty because the form and pace of this shift is unknown. There is also an impact in our in terms of how learning environments will look and their future functions.

4. Ownership
Copyright and IP are dominant factors in the use and diffusion of knowledge. Ideas and created works are restricted and controlled. This is an uncertainty because it is unclear whether there will be a countermovement against open access.

I look forward to your comments. As David Wiley states "Without sharing there is no education."

Annotated Bibliography 5

Evans, L., & Chauvin, S. (1993). Faculty developers as change facilitators: The concerns-based adoption model.
Description: The paper focuses on the Stages of Concern (SoC) around the implementation of a new innovation. These range from Stage 0-Awareness where the participant is not concerned about the innovation through to Stage 6-Refocusing where the participant has ideas about something that would work even better. Hall and Hord (1987) developed three methods to assess the stages of  concern about an innovation: 1. one-legged conferences, 2. open-ended statements, and 3. the Stages of Concern Questionaire. Once the intensity of an individual's concern is established an intervention can be developed to target the stage of concern. The paper concludes that the CBAM model is a useful concept for facilitating individuals and groups in implementing innovations. It identifies from a number of studies that the model is useful in effecting long-term sustainable change.
Evaluation: This is one of many papers that discuss the effectiveness of the Concerns Based Adoption Model (CBAM) in introducing innovation into schools and other institutions. I like the way the process is based around identifying the barriers to implementation through some pretty thorough processes and providing targetted support to provide the individual with the information they need exactly where they are. The difficulty for me in terms of the critique of this and other models is they focus on the impact at the individual level and I am looking at the implementation at a policy level, so need to consider carefully which model I choose for the assignment.

Garcelon, M. (2009). An information commons? Creative Commons and public access to cultural creations. New media & society, 11(8), 1307-1326.
 Description: This paper is a response to an intellectual property conception of copyright that had been dominant in American law since the 1970s. It identifies the intent of the original copyright law from 1790, that made a clear distinction between ideas and their expression. The argument was ideas should remain in the public domain, but the expression of ideas would be able to be protected by copyright for a limited period of time.
The extensions of copyright defined in the Sonny Bono Copyright Act would mean that cultural creations would effectively be under a defacto permanent monopoly. Creative Commons is a response to this, and endeavours to recapture Thomas Jefferson's original intent.Evaluation: This is a well written and informative paper. This provided me with an overview of the Creative Commons movement, and the legislative shifts that prompted this. This is an important paper for me as it captures the intent of the movement and the important shift in terms of my research around intellectual property and copyright law.

Major trends in my context

The three major trends I have identified are:

This trend focuses on the use of standards, assessment with rewards and punishment as its drivers.
This trend is important in our context as it appears there is an increasing international focus on standardising learning and increased assessment. The Herald featured an article about a school that had a commissioner appointed because they refused to provide National Standards data to the Ministry.

This trend focuses on the use of online learning and networks to solve problems. This is important in our context in two ways:
-the way our students access learning and the concept of school (face to face/ online)
-the way we develop our teachers-research has shown that individual development of teachers has a negligible effect on the performance of teams. Our focus needs to be how we can develop high performance across teams.

This trend focuses on open access to learning resources. This is important to us as it gives us the ability to copy and remix materials without the barriers to access, sharing and use.

Thursday, 1 August 2013

Creative Narrative: the importance of future history

I believe that storytelling is a powerful tool for transformation. The use of scenario planning enables a systems based approach to be linked with a process of imagining that enables us to harness the strength of both. I see one of the advantages of scenario planning being that it enables us to be open to future scenarios and move beyond the limitations of what we are personally comfortable with. It requires us to have an awareness of the issues and trends that are present at a local, national and global level.
The process requires the inclusion of all stakeholders to be part of the imagining process. It enables us to draw all of our resources. Between us all we have the answer.
One of the disadvantages there could be to the process is the strength of the process is reliant on the ability to assimilate and synthesise what could potentially be hundreds of potential scenarios, so a highly level of skill to identify and group what are potentially similiar futures is key to the distillation of these down to a small number of futures. I suppose this comes back to the levels of openess and awareness stakeholders bring to the process.
I see this as a very good process to use in my context. We come into the third year of my leadership next year we had spoken at a lead level about casting our vision out for the next three years. How much more useful would it be to push ourselves out 15 years to when our new entrants will enter employment and backmap future histories from that place. It means that our actions today are more meaningful and impactful tomorrow. It will enable us to develop strategy that impacts beyond our regular three year review.

I would like to learn more about the process of scenario planning and look at how it can be implemented at macro and micro levels.

Wednesday, 31 July 2013

Discovering the world of scenario planning

Scenarios can't predict the future, so what's the point?

That's right-scenarios can't predict the future but they are a mechanism to imagine multiple futures and gives us an opportunity to learn from 'future history'.
It enable us to learn from the future rather than use our past to predict an outcome. The opportunity to explore future environments and how they may impact on us enables us to be free from the constraints of our knowing. It gives us the opportunity to design a history of the future to inform our present actions. Scenario planning enables us to challenge the robustness of our futures. Scenario planning enables us to identify the strategic implications of our imagined futures. By identify a number of potential futures we can then evaluate our strategies across all of those and begin to see those strategies that will address a number of imagined futures. It gives us the confidence to look at what actions we must take now to respond to these multiple scenarios.
The point is that the use of scenarios supplements traditional planning processes. It provides us with an opportunity to explore multiple futures in way that enables us to relate to each other in a different way.
It gives us a rich range of possibility. Who would not want that?

Adam Kahane at Ci2012 - "Transformative Scenario Planning"