Standing on the shoulders of giants – lwf awards 2012

Well wow….I’m worthy of the finals of the LWF12 awards. A huge honour to share a list with people such as @timrylands, @chickensaltash, @deputymitchell and @ianaddison.

I figure I ought to justify myself. Except this isn’t about me. I work with incredible people who support me and humour me in equal doses I should imagine! Initially I was goaded and empowered by @timbuckteeth and latterly joined by a rather marvellous chap @oliverquinilan. I rub shoulders with people like @profandyphippen and am given lots of autonomy and wriggle room. I think I should also acknowledge the patience, loyalty and forbearance of the students at Plymouth University.

What all these people may not realize, are the sacrifices my family make in order to create this special brand of chaos….I don’t. @ethinkingjnr shares me with about 800 other ‘kids’ of mine, Joanna spends too many evenings alone. Why do I do it? ‘Cos one of them might end up being his teacher and I want to make sure they are all good enough.

This all started 10 years ago when Tricia Neal, Doug Dickinson and Steve Lepper took a punt on me being a viable trainer on the NOF programme. They are important people, they guided me and. Mentored me throughout the last ten year and for some reason persisted in believing I had things to offer

Given the above prevailing conditions; what have we achieved?

  • Twitter is used as a matter of course during lectures.
  • SMS questions in whole cohort lectures is available.
  • I have self teaching students who arrange the experts of their choice attend their seminars.
  • With the inspiration of @timbuckteeth dozens of students blog their learning.
  • Oliver has set up a blog aggregation site which allows the students to find each other’s blogs.
  • We have students volunteering to support children’s blogs and innovations like the 100 Word Challenge.
  • We have teachers and advisors approaching us to support and mentor students.
  • We have students speaking at teachmeets, we have students organising teachmeets, We have students spending their own money to attend events like Microsoft Partners in Learning in Reading this year.
  • We have students signing up for the course because they are promised challenge and truth.
  • External examiners talk about the profound learning opportunities I provide.
  • @chickensaltash has blogged about his impression of what I have been doing.
  • I support @timbuckteeth with the www.pelceon.net conference the Plymouth learning Conference as was.
  • I have been working with Claire Fenwick and Oliver Quinlan to develop a sustainable southern SWGfL conference. (SW Digital Educators).

Here are some things my students and peers say about the PlymUniPrimary experience and some slides I used this morning in a lecture:

And what do I do?

I simply stand at the front and provoke students into learning, not all of them like me, but they know I make mediocrity an uncomfortable choice.

Am I being innovative?

Well I don’t know about that….I’m taking a stand, saying to each of them that it is not OK to be mediocre, that this stuff matters and being outstanding is OK…excellence is the goal, not placating people.

Should you care, you can vote for me at: http://www.learningwithoutfrontiers.com/lwf12/awards/the-finalists/

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