“We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard” JFK
There was a real buzz that first morning when we all arrived and yet were not sure exactly what lied ahead of us. We knew there would be a range of teachers, skills, the walls you can write on and that sense of googliness but what was going to be achieved was still not quite clear to me.
We shared our findings from the immersion tasks and we all had a realisation of what we want to achieve in education. Teacher moonshots included building excitement for teachers, student voice, changing assessment and why can’t I open my own school? It was then we had a Jerry Maguire moment of “who’s with me?”. I grabbed the fish and I was with a lot of the teachers.
I was introduced to Hackschooling. A TED talk by Logan Laplante - Everything is up for being hacked. Hack Schooling TED Talk
This excited me, I was left asking questions of how else can we get students and schools show what they are doing and what they are doing well. So trying to improve assessment across schools is my Moonshot!
As the first day went on (and this continued into day two), what struck me was the connection I made with my team, we questioned, challenged, supported and worked together to see how we could work towards achieving our Moonshots. Clare, Karla, Ross, Shawn, Anthony and of course our team mentor Chris I had a great couple days working with you and I thank you all for your questions and support and look forward to our continued journey ahead. I know I am able to ask challenging questions to my students but I have never felt confident in challenging adults, this experience changed that also.
Google teacher academy was personalised we were able to use the strategies and resources to suit our very own Moonshot - I can’t wait to use these skills with my students - such as
- Shaped Thinking (My version of hexagonal thinking)
- 100 ideas in 10 minutes
- Coming up with open ended challenges with my students
- Seeing that sparks student curiousity
Time was a challenge throughout the experience but really this is no different to our classrooms and in life. Some things do take time but limitations can be of assistance rather than a challenge. A focus our team worked on when the idea of a 48 min movie festival came round.
What also added to this great experience is that I was able to share with 4 great friends/colleagues from the #aussieED team. The car rides on the way home together were an experience in themselves.
We were also very fortunate to hear talks from Annie Parker, Brett Morgan and Suan Yeo himself. Helpful, encouraging and inspiring. Great ways to end each day.
So, the fact that it was different to past GTAs made it that bit more special - Hamish Curry and Tom Barrett from No Tosh were amazing leaders of the two days who were challenging as well as encouraging, I especially loved and heard others say it was great how we were addressed as colleagues. I am excited to continue the journey after this experience with my new colleagues and skills acquired. Moonshots are GO!