ULearn 2012 Conference Notes and Thoughts

ULearn, Auckland New Zealand

October 10-12 2012


Conference Introduction

Ulearn 2012 Conference was organised by Core education.  Core Education is based in Christchurch  and Wellington but moved due to earthquake until the convention centre is rebuilt. In attendance were 1500 delegates 120 Australians.  Attendance by sector included  Primary Schools and  58% Secondary Schools 29 % and in relation to the roles of delegates 56% were teachers, 13% lead teachers, 10% Assistant and Deputy  Principal,  9% principals  and 6% facilitators.  There were four keynotes and 100+ workshops over the four days in 4 different venues in Auckland. The Conference had a research and a teaching arm to the presentations.


Conference Show Case

There were Pre Conference Workshops on Tuesday and in the afternoon evening 8 presenters at the conference did a 10 minute presentation on the following topics

Julia Atkin

Aphorisms in abundance getting to the heart of many a matter

Geoff Powell

1000 iPads from K-12 at St Hilda’s What does it look like and how does it work?

Derek Wenmoth

A future focus education

Kevin Honeycutt

The Killer app for the 21st century is to inspire kids to learn to love to learn (L2L2L)

Annie Agnew

Looking at learning inside out

Andrew Douch

Patching the ICT Desire Paths

Douglas Harre

Guttenberg, Franklin and Abraham van Heel – The benefits of a high fibre diet.


Helen Robinson

Chairperson – The network for learning  (N4L) on ultra fast broadband.

Three themes

  • N4L Brand
  • N4L4U
  • Sharing treasures

Dr Jason Ohler
New Media, New Kids, -New Literacies, New citizens

Lots of useful resource son his website

He wants to be a good door opener for students, imagination and the world. Kids just need to be let in the door so they can show what they can do. This is his main message and linked it to story telling.

Khoa Do


In great obstacles Lie Great Opportunities

In 1980s as a two year old he came to Australian as a Vietnamese refuge and was awarded the Young Australian of the Year in 2005 for his film would with the most disadvantaged in our community.

Kevin Honeycutt

Collaborate , Innovate and Educate

ESSDACK USA http://kevinhoneycutt.org/

Kevin was raised in a trailer park started as art teacher Kansas and moved to helping teenagers in juvenile detention.  He is a firm believer in using videos and audio recordings to be able to rewind learning.

Glen Capelli


Group Genius – Innovating, educating and collaborating

Intelligence does not belong to the individual – it is about sharing.  Kaizen- a little bit of improvement each time. Apply to life, healing and learning. Widezen- we all get trapped in our strengths. How else can you do things ?



Mike Scaddan

What do we really know about the brain?

This was a hands on sessions with lots of breaks to speak to other participants about the questions raised.

Karen Melhuish Core Education

Punch above your weight – virtual professional learning

  1. Trends
    1. Mobiles and tablets
    2. Social web
    3. Connectivity and the cloud
  2. Blend to extend – focus on your learning
    1. New models of PD
    2. Does our learning reflect what we want to do with our studnets?
  3. How you might get started?
    1. Project yourself beyond your school – de-silo
    2. Connect to useful networks
    3. Accept /reject – be a discriminating digital citizen
    4. Collect , curate, contribute and sustain
    5. Reflect on your inquiry

Dr Jason Nohler

Adventures in Digital Citizenship – perspectives tools activities


His theme is to think about what you are doing. The enemy is disinhibition.  This means you (children) are being in the public eye but you don’t have the social cues to know this is happening. Set up a character education program for digital kids.

Academics and character

Publically defined infused through curriculum

Create frameworks rather than attack issues

Kids learn character anyway so make it deliberate

He did a lot of research on social and emotional growth.  Bodies are developing more quickly but the brain is not developing 3 years faster like the body.  Now consider this in relation to online behavior – , the ability use ethical judgement is preceded by cognitive development. They need to think about it.  To them it is invisible so you need to open the door for them.


Dave Beehre

The physical and virtual divide

QR Codes and Virtual Divide? QR Codes and AR Technology within the classroom


Dave is from a school of 900 students in Years 8 and 9. Lots of good demonstrations, and links to resources for using QR Codes and Augmented reality in the classroom.

Stuart Hale

iPads in Classroom workshop

Presentation was  linked to the SAMR Model. Critical Mass does develop and needs to be managed.  For example, the poorest schools in Auckland high uptake of BYOD.

Kevin Walsh

1000 + iPads at St Hilda’s

What does it look like. How does it work?

Use the iPad extensively as a book. There is nothing threatening about a book to a teacher.

Need a good LMS – they use Blackboard to manage resources and it is hosted in the cloud for ease of access for the students.  Cost savings in printing, using Guttenberg books for curriculum and bringing 5 classes back online for general teaching with the free up of un used computing rooms.


Margot McKeegan

Networked Learning – Greater Christchurch Schools Networking


  1. Colleagues
  2. Regional networks
  3. Conferences
  4. Elearning providers eg universities
  5. Web 2 tools
  6. Reading
  7. Video Conferencing
  8. Virtual Learning Network

Glenn Capelli
The innovation revolution creating a culture of ideas

Disrupting the disrupters. VISPAS

  • Vicinity
  • Inclusion
  • Secret sign
  • Private message
  • Adjacent
  • Student

Tools of innovation


Catching information

Hatching – putting things in action.

Social Media Station Core education

Focused on way os automating Social Media. Check out  ifttt.com and buffer app.com


Blended learning

It is not about technology but what is it about? Learning, pedagogy, sharing….blended learning

Open the door

We bring the kids into our playground and we need to be in their’s as well. This includes opening the door for staff as well.   Hence, implications for BYOD, ICT infrastructure and digital citizenship.

Digital age

“We have a duty to educate whole families in a digital age.  It is not just digital citizenship and social media. Most of our mistakes are analogue are not rewindable the kids need us.”

Personalised professional learning

How are mobile technologies social media and fast broadband being used at your school? Future learning is to de- silo – don’t be by yourself. Don’t squeeze more on the plate redesign it. So the mantra is  “not more just different” – self-directed, connected, curated and shared.

Memorable quotes

I have one chance so focus on what you have with passion and enthusiasm.  When you have a setback you have to get back up for yourself and your team.

You cannot say you don’t like a student because of what you do.  In an emergency ward you don’t ask the patient why did you break your leg? You have to help them.

Don’t wait till you are good at it you will never do it.  If you don’t do it you will be standing at the side of the road with a flat tyre with your girlfriend waiting for a guy to come and help you. (SIC)

Most of our mistakes are analogue and not rewind able they (the children) need us to guide them.

Is he different because he is creative or is he creative because he is different.

Twitter is my think tank in my back pocket. Not for the social only but so we can help each other. Not for everyone but I am the guy who found the grant for school through Twitter.

I am glad you are on Facebook because you know how to speak intelligently in social spaces.

BYOD is good you have not cut off their digital limbs.  Ghost pain.

There is no such thing as multitasking, just task switching.

Technology sometimes retrieves something lost – Facebook has retrieved the extended community.

We value writing more than ever.  Good writing is needed for the use of new media.  If it ain’t on the page it ain’t on the stage – need a good script

The microwave stopped the family dinner and soon after the dining room was replaced by a family room.

Really need blended learning – some use technology too much and others not enough.

Very important to act quickly sometimes.

I don’t care what you do in life but I want you to do it well.

“Professional learning is blended sustained and extends student centred leaning brought ubiquitous technologies.”

Not more just differently

This technology (BYOD) needs new network thinking. Proxies are old technology thinking. 20th century thinking on 21 st century devices.

I have never had a child’s say to me I cannot use an iPad in my classes because I have not had PD.

I feel a caveman seeing fire for the first time.

cheers Martin

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