Konsulting with Katz in Korea

@stevekatz – please excuse the terrible alliteration – I just couldn’t resist it!

Late last month, I was invited to work with the Apple Distinguished Educator (ADE) community in Seoul. I had two extremely productive days; the first was working exclusively with the ADEs and the second was a day of running workshops for the international school community.

Looking for the Challenge!

Friday’s Brief:

Friday’s focus was for the ADE community to come together to choose a collaborative project to address across schools using a CBL model. I was very fortunate to be asked to join as the facilitator for the group for the planning day. It’s a really good idea to have someone ‘neutral’ and not a primary stakeholder.

The goals for the day were to:

  • decide on the topic for the collaborative project
  • determine strategic plan for implementing collaborative project (timeline, structure, participants, promotion plan for projects and so on)
  • determine specific outcomes of the project

Our Passions:

We kicked off with each person responding to three simple questions:

  1. What is your role in your school/what do you teach
  2. What is the curriculum of school
  3. What is your current passion

From this, we broke into groups to compare and constrast responses to determine the common themes and then fed-back to create a complete list.

What’s your Passion?

The Problems:

We then compiled a list of problems that emerged from these themes and discussions which we threw up on a googledoc so that everyone could indicate which problems that they were interested in tackling. Some problems were:

  • How do we provide students the foundational technology skills they need to effectively use technology for learning?
  • Students are not aware of the value/effects of their short/long-term effects of their digital footprint

However, one clear problem emerged….perhaps with lunch drawing close, it was a quick decision!

Schools needs 21st Century administrators for the 21st Century

The Challenge:

Using the Challenge Based Learning (CBL) model, the next step was to turn the problem into a feasible challenge.

Build a common understanding of 21st Century administration among leaders in international schools in Korea.

For the scope of this project, we defined administrators to be principals, vice or assistant principals, the business managers or CFOs and curriculum leaders.

For background on 21 Century learning, our primary sources were:

NETS for Administrators (2009). International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE).

Partnership for 21st Century Skills (August 2, 2007). Framework for 21st Century Learning.

The Solution:

“The ADE Community in Korea will work together to develop a variety of collective and school-based professional development opportunities for administrators in international schools in Korea in order to build a common understanding of 21st Century school administration. Two surveys, at the beginning of the challenge and the end of the challenge will be digitally distributed to pre-identified administrators in the international schools in order to measure changes in perceptions/understandings of 21st Century administration.”

Examples of some of the collective opportunities include:

  • Korea Council of Overseas Schools (KORCOS) workshops for 21st Century Administrator which will be informed by the results of the first survey
  • A specific Event for all headmasters / principals
  • A one stop site for administrators such as an wiki for student showcase, professional readings, links posted to Facebook group

In addition schools will put together individual professional development plans, again informed by the first survey and continually reviewed and updated based on feedback. Ideas included:

  • Encouraging administrators to use collaboration tools in meeting
  • Videos made by students to show how administrators can use the tools in their admin environment
  • Developing an app to take into the classroom to evaluate how technology is used

As the facilitator for that day, my ‘job’ is done – but is it? The proof in is in the eating! For me, it was more than just a one-off task. I’m curious to see how the project is going. I want to look at the results of the survey and see how it was received by the administrators. I want to find how the plans are translating into actions…what’s working, what’s not.  I’m looking forward to my administrators networking with the administrators from Korea and being “wow’ed” by their 21 Century-ness. Bring it on!

Whatever the outcome(s), it was a fantastic opportunity to get to know the Korea ADE community on both a more personal and professional level:

Aysem Bray (KIS) @Aysem_Bray
Darren Price (TCIS)
Jessica Hale (YISS) @mrshaleinseoul
Joe Fambro (GSIS) @krea_frobro747
Kevin Duncan (KIS) @duncanka
Marcel Ideler (Chadwick)
Mark Heil (leave early) (YISS) @mouseflip
Rolly Maiquez (Chadwick) @rollymaiquez
Steve Katz (KIS) @stevekatz
Tim Bray (KIS) @tsbray

and, of course, TG Song (Korea) and Melissa Li (Beijing) from Apple.

Thank you all for inviting me!