Archive | April, 2014

ETL 504 Professional Learning

25 Apr

How will you train the teachers in both the understanding of the continuum and how this can be embedded within their programs? How will you manage your own professional learning strategy? How will you influence and/or guide the professional learning needs of others?

Initially I would make available for all teachers the information on the General Capability of Information and Communication Literacy (ACARA, 2013) and the Australian Charter for the Professional Learning of Teachers and School Leaders (AITSL, 2012) to create awareness and understanding as to why it is important to participate in developing digital literacy across the curriculum.

Pre reading provides an opportunity for staff to reflect on the experiences they already have and what they would like to learn in order to move forward (Semadeni, 2009). I would request feedback from staff as to what kind of digital literacy they feel is needed in order to develop professional learning which is focused on these needs and can be embedded within their programs. Gaining an understanding and input on staff requirements leads to better engagement in learning (Khoboli & O’Toole, 2012; Livingston, 2012).

A representative from each faculty joining the technology team would be beneficial because using a collaborative environment will enhance the professional development that is designed and developed. Considerations will encompass teacher requirements and faculty specific needs. It would also create a better understanding of what curriculum requirements each faculty has (Keengwe, 2013; Rytivaara & Kershner, 2012; Khoboli & O’Toole, 2012). Another means of establishing this would be for the Teacher Librarian to be involved in curriculum planning sessions with each faculty and then reporting findings to the technology team in order to collaboratively map out and design the development needs of the school teaching community.

When designed, these development sessions can be scheduled and delivered over time and revisited and or readjusted as required. They may be facilitated in a number of ways depended on nature of the content, whether it is generic or faculty specialised. Facilitation could be small groups, faculty groups, individualised or peer facilitation just to name a few examples. Ultimately it would be tailored towards the needs of the school community and the time constraints imposed by the day to day teaching and learning schedules (Livingston, 2012).

To manage my own professional learning strategy, I would be heavily involved in the technology team at my school. I would also engage in courses which are relevant to our school community and ensure that this learning is followed up at the local school level (Livingston, 2012). I would try and engage in authentic learning environments and work collaboratively with other teachers (Livingston, 2012).

In essence, I would attempt to make teaching public within my school environment and try and promote a mindset of a learning community. Generating an understanding of professional learning as a social activity within a community of practice will enhance professional development outcomes within the school community (Lieberman & Mace, 2010).


Australian Curriculum and Reporting Authority (ACARA). (2013). General Capabilities of the Australian Curriculum. Retrieved from:

Australian Institute for Teaching and School Leadership (AITSL). (2012). Australian Charter for the Professional Learning of School Teachers and Leaders. Retrieved from:

Keengwe, J. (2013). Multi-modal professional development for faculty. Virtual mentoring for teachers: online professional development practices (pp. 43-65). Hershey, PA: Information Science Reference. Retrieved from:

Khoboli, B. & O’Toole, J.M. (2012). The Concerns-Based Adoption Model: Teacher Participation in Action Research. Systemic Practice and Action Research, 25(2), 137-148. Retrieved from:

Leiberman, A. & Mace, D.P. (2010). Making Practice Public: teacher Learning in the 21st Century. Journal of Teacher Education, 61(1-2), 77-88. Retrieved from:

Livingston, K. (2012). Approaches to professional development of teachers in Scotland: pedagogical innovation or financial necessity? Educational Research, 54(2). Retrieved from:

Rytivaara, A. & Kershner, R. (2012). Co-teaching as a context for teachers’ professional learning and joint knowledge construction. Teaching and Teacher Education, 28(7), 999-1008. Retrieved from:

Semadeni, J.H. (2009). Professional development. Taking charge of professional development a practical model for your school (pp. 28-48). Alexandria, VA.: ASCD.


ETL 504 Digital Literacy

25 Apr

What is your understanding of digital literacy? Map your current understanding of digital literacy to the General Capabilities of the Australian Curriculum. How would you develop a digital literacy framework for your school in the context of the Australian Curriculum?

My understanding of digital literacy is the ability to utilise various technological tools (hardware and software) and understand how these tools can enhance teaching and learning.

In the General Capabilities of the Australian Curriculum, Information and Communication Technology (ICT) involves students developing the capabilities to effectively and appropriately use ICT to access, create, communicate, solve problems and work collaboratively in all learning areas at school and in their lives beyond school (ACARA, 2013). My understanding of digital literacy is stated very basically; however it is derived from the concept of being able to use technology in a manner as stated in the General Capabilities.

Technology has globalised the learning environment making it necessary to embrace technology as it is a means of constructing learning in a multi modal manner. The ability to stay adept with technology enables the learner greater control over how, where and when they learn (ACARA, 2013). It also provides the opportunity to interact with other learners on a global scale which fits with Vygotsky and Bruner’s social constructivist theory where there is an emphasis learner interactions and the dialogue used (Pritchard, 2008) to construct learning.

To develop a digital literacy framework, I would work collaboratively with interested teachers. A good starting point would be from within the technology team at my school. It would be necessary to articulate an overall goal and then break this down into smaller achievable aims that can be completed within the restrictions of time availability. Teachers can engage in highly focused and scaffolded in-house professional development which will hopefully flow into classroom teaching and learning practices. This will also enhance digital literacy across the curriculum.


Australian Curriculum and Reporting Authority (ACARA). (2013). General Capabilities of the Australian Curriculum. Retrieved from:

Pritchard, A. (2008). Cognitive constructivist learning. Ways of learning (2nd ed., pp. 17-33). Abingdon, Oxon: Routledge.

ETL 504 Leadership

25 Apr

* What is your understanding of leadership for learning?

My understanding of leadership for learning is that being a leader still entails learning and this occurs simultaneously as the process of leading occurs (MacBeath & Dempster, 2009). This type of leadership has a focus on learning that is conducted collaboratively and shared within an environment with a common purpose or goal.


MacBeath, J.E. & Dempster, N. (2009). Leadership for learning. Connecting leadership and learning: principles for practice (pp. 32-52). London Routledge.



* Have you identified any particular element of leadership practice in collaborative environments, that has made you stop and think about the practical professional opportunities that you may like to explore or adopt in your school?

As stated in Collay (2011), I viewed leadership as having a hierarchical structure within the school environment, stemming in structure from the Principal, Deputy Principals, Head Teachers and then Teachers. I also had the view that more experienced teachers as having seniority from a leadership perspective.

Collay (2011) highlighted the fact that teachers are all leaders within the classroom or the library in the case of Teacher Librarians. It also places a focus on the classroom as the nucleus of leadership in schools, which is a concept that I had not considered before.

An approach I would like to explore in the future is working more collaboratively, using a problem based learning strategy (Goodnough, 2005) to integrate teaching and learning opportunities that can be explored within the library and the classroom which will extend across the curriculum. Working collaboratively will provide an environment that brings various experiences to the table, all of which are working towards the common goal of our primary business of education.


Collay, M. (2011). Teaching is leading. Everyday Teacher Leadership: Taking Action Where You Are (pp. 75-108). San Francisco, CA: Jossey-Bass.

Goodnough, K. (2005). Fostering Teacher Learning through Collaborative Inquiry. Clearing House, 79(2), 88-92. Retrieved from: