Rachel Boyd: Leading the Way

As I have said on quite a few occasions it is Twitter that remains my most important source of information and contacts. A couple of days ago I found out that I had a new follower.

I always follow up my followers to see what they do and often I click on their linked website which can be a great source of information.

My new “friend”  was Rachel Boyd a Year 2 teacher from  Nelson, New Zealand. I followed the link on her website and came to this website: http://www.rachelboyd.com/

I clicked on the link and found myself immersed for the next hour or so in the world of an exemplary 21st century teacher  leader and her wonderful class of Year 2 children (aged 6 to 7) from Room 4 in  Waiuku Primary near Auckland, New Zealand.

I could go on and on about the excitement I felt in looking through this Wiki. As an e-portfolio of how to work creatively with children allowing them to learn using 21st century technology  it is simply outstanding.

Rachel has shown that you can work using the tools of the 21st century to allow children to really enhance their learning. She has not  kept her inspirational classroom to herself but has become a leader for technology in schools both in New Zealand and internationally, attending conferences and conducting CPD.

She has really led the way in showing just how much her young students are capable of doing if they are given the opportunity to use the technology. It made me think of just how much other children in primary classrooms throughout the world can be doing (and sharing and communicating) who will be returning to their schools for the new school year and will not have a fraction of the opportunities or excitement for learning that Rachel’s very fortunate children have.

I recently wrote a post about “How Not To Use Computers In Schools” : http://malbell.wordpress.com/2010/08/25/how-not-to-use-computers-in-schools/

In Rachel’s case we see a brilliant example of just how to use them. I feel that teachers would benefit from seeing her work online (there are some excellent videos showing the children’s work) and also using the links to other sources of information (I have been researching these for nearly two days now!)

One area where Rachel is really leading the way is in her use of class blogs. Her children run their own blogs and read other children’s work from all over the world. A really useful introduction to and an example of Room 4’s work can be see at http://www.youtube.com/user/byrachelboyd#p/a/u/1/whm3pxqkvB8

Another great example of her work can be seen in her class blog.. the latest entry contained the following information:

Today we visited a NASA website, it said that they were sending a new rover to Mars next year.

It is taking with it a special microchip with our names on it!

We went onto this website and filled out the form all by ourselves. Then it gave us a special number and made us a certificate of participation saying we were part of history!

We printed our certificates to take home. If you would like your name to go to Mars you can visit the same NASA website we went to here:
http://marsparticipate.jpl.nasa.gov/msl/participate/sendyourname/

Rachel had her certificate of participation from NASA on the blog:

As I think you can see from above..we have here an extraordinary 21st century teacher leader and I feel that we can all learn from her example.

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