I found this visit really eye opening and inspiring. To start, I have lived in Victoria my whole life and had no idea that this school was up and running so it was neat to go and explore it and what it has to offer. Next, it really showed me the potential students have when they are given the tools to go where their mind wants to take them. When Jeff Hopkins mentioned the student that created is creating a solar panel out of recycled solar panels blew my mind, that was so inspiring to see. The one thing about this school is these students are seemed to not have much open space. I felt very confined and their, being someone with who is hyperactive I don’t think this structure would have worked for me. I need the changing of subject like in a typical high school to so that my brain is able to change and focus on other things. One more thing that I did think was very beneficial, which other school should implicate, is the sensory room that a student created. Students can use this to stimulate or unstimulated their brain. It can help students feel lets stressed and can just give them some time to think in a quiet space. I think if you had this at higher populated high schools it can be very beneficial for students, probably almost more than this school that only had 85, just allowing students to get away from the hustle bustle of the 1000 student that attend their school. All in all, I think this school is a very valuable place for the right kind of students.
Video conferencing was a totally new experience for me. I thought it was very cool how we could have a lecture from someone who is hours away, while it still feeling like he was right there. Ian Landy is the principal of a school in Powell River. He has been working toward removing formal assessment (report cards) and moving towards a more interactive form of assessment. Landy uses a program called e-portfolio. The students seem to have more of a say in their learning with this assessment style, parents can also add work that the students were willing to do at home which I though was very interesting and unlike anything I have heard of before. This form of assessment let the parents follow their learning more frequently and is more personal than your standard report card. It elimitates the comparison between students as the teacher gets more personal work to look at.
It was fun to explore around on iMovie during class. I enjoyed playing with the different sound effects, transitions, speeds and more. I had worked with iMovie before, so it wasn’t too hard for me to catch on in class. I think iMovie can be such a dun tool to use in a classroom that students would love. I remember making movies in middle school and always being so excited to share them with the class.
In class today, we got to explore doing our own in-class Edcamp. Edcamp is the idea of sharing professional knowledge. People of all sorts come together and get to learn about a topic of their choice. It is an awesome way to learn more about a topic you are interested in. Before learning about Edcamps, I had no idea what they were, so it was fun learning about them and getting to be apart of one with my class. The topic I went to discuss was if teachers are being too accommodating to students. This interested me because I knew that everyone would have interesting opinions and I wasn’t really sure of the answer, so I wanted to go to find out what most people were thinking about the topic. The people who came to this session all had their own opinions but were also respectful of other people opinions. There were other discussions happening about outdoor learning, special education, and more.
When watching the film, it reminded me a lot of the philosophy/ history of education class that I was in last semester. The reason it reminded of it was because we learned about so many different styles of teaching that have been used in the past as well as many renouned approaches to teaching. Usually if you were to mention to me some unique way of teaching, I couldn’t connect this to any of the philosophies or approaches that I learned about last semester. This documentary was interesting to me because I couldn’t connect it to any of the philosophies or approaches that I had learned about previously, so I found it very unique and interesting to watch. One part that I like especially was how the whole class worked together to create a big project in the end. I also like how they would have meeting with the teachers about their progress and get the chance to say how they think they have done and how they have progressed as a student. While watching I often found myself saying, “wow, I could have never been able to figure that out,” but upon thinking on it more, I think it is possible to achieve big things when you are given the time and the support to do so.