Leading and Reimagining Education post-pandemic

“Transitions are opportunities for growth and development”

- Year 6 students’ central idea as they explore their orientation in place and time, interconnectedness of individuals within societies and global perspectives.

As educators and leaders, we currently have a unique opportunity to reflect on our approaches to recent challenges and collectively grow. Regardless of our differing contexts, our shared purpose has become a search for strategies and systems to embrace (rather than endure) an unknown future. How can we support each other to leverage hindsight NOW, to strategically surface the WOW (what went well), and collaboratively determine HOW our pedagogical practices can be adapted and further embedded by design.

 

Adapted: How-Now-Wow Matrix. Dave Gray - Gamestorming (2011)

NOW – Change by Design

Pause. Consider the moment or a moment of significant disruption for you and your school in 2020.. those moments of acting in the NOW, rapid decision making without a playbook and pathways that opened to learn from others. With extended lockdowns and the pandemic now transcending numerous years, was there a shift and change where those NOW moments were less about emergency remote learning, but rather building upon the skills and capabilities of our staff and students – encouraging everyone to prioritise and celebrate moments of creativity, joy and connection.

  • As educators, is technology in our classrooms now more ubiquitous? Is it everywhere, all the time.. or is it available anywhere, anytime?
  • As leaders, what could we be doing now to help develop the blended-learning landscape of tools and capabilities for the future?


WOW – Strategic Alignment

Maintaining strategic alignment vs adaptive adjustments - one of greatest challenges for decision makers navigating the changes in practice that were required when rapidly pivoting to remote learning. As we sought ways to avoid community isolation and maintain learning continuity, there were many silver linings. In virtual classrooms, lesson design and instruction evolved to enable higher-levels of collaborative learning, great student agency, interactivity and authenticity. Hopefully practices have continued with greater insight into the purpose behind the use of technology and continuing evaluation of how students capture evidence of learning. Whilst some approaches were by necessity, some of the WOW moments were transformative and should be amplified, whilst noting it also might be time to ditch new (or existing) approaches that were considered a necessity.

  • As educators, how did you maintain connection and continuity with your community of learners?
  • As leaders, how might we strategically impact the mindset of the community to amplify the quality practices that will help our schools thrive in the future? What practices must now change?


HOW – Emergent Systems

The HOW of both classroom and remote technology use was driven by increasingly agile mindsets. Communities of practice such as Apple Teacher and diving deeply into how learners visibly engage, think and create has become the norm. Increased focus on managing and priorities workflows and learning experience design tools such as the WHO Workflow with students and their needs at the core. Principles such as familiarity, simplicity and safety guided many decisions as to the HOW of remote learning, but continue as these new systems can be consolidated into daily practice.

  • As educators, how will you continue to build upon blended learning experiences for your students and leverage Apple technologies to continue to evolve your teaching practices?
  • As leaders, what skills, systems and organisational behaviours do our schools need to be developing for sustainable hybrid delivery?


The opportunity in the comments below, is to collaboratively develop and share practical artifacts to lead sustainable change in our school contexts. Share a NOW, WOW or HOW thought or consider the above questions to prompt sharing as we continue to increase our comfort with uncertainty and ambiguity, collaborate across diversity and reflect towards sensemaking beyond the pandemic period.

Tagged in: Leadership, Coaching, Hybrid Teaching and Learning, Blended Learning, Instructional Design

All Comments

Posted on September 14, 2022

Love the quote and positive mindset.

I think the hardest thing for our schools is snapping back into the "comfort" zone. Technology is being to be everywhere, opening access, but it is how we use it. Thinking of the SAMR model, I think a lot of practice is still in the S and A levels.

Posted on October 22, 2022

I love the NOW, WOW, & HOW framing in your post. These are helpful and positive guiding questions for educators as we all navigate what it looks like to move forward in our learning environments. Like JJ mentioned in her reply, I think there's been a reaction back to the "comfort zone" for many educators who had no choice but to implement massive changes to their teaching during the pandemic. That being said, I do think professional learning communities and peer mentoring can be great strategies for encouraging reflective conversations about some of the transformative practices that were developed over the last couple of years and how those new technology-enhanced practices can make their way into our classroom spaces to support all learners. Your guiding questions could be used to facilitate those conversations with teachers and help individuals and teams set professional goals for technology use during instruction.

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