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Community meetings about learning with digital technologies

This information is intended to support schools and kura to enhance learning with digital technologies initiatives such as BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) by forming and maintaining positive relationships with their whānau, iwi, and community.

It suggests ideas to include when communicating with whānau about learning with digital technologies, specifically in a community meeting setting.

Underlying principles

As part of an ongoing dialogue, a community meeting is one way to communicate with whānau and the community. Learning involves a three-way partnership with the learner, their whānau, and the school or kura. Starting with the aspirations of the learner and their whānau, each partner has a part to play to ensure that learning with digital technologies is effective.

Engagement with your community about learning with digital technologies should be underpinned by the following principles:

  • Basic principles.
  • Clearly, consistently, and concisely link how learning with digital technologies supports the school or kura’s vision.
  • Ensure that all teachers and kaiako can explain how digital technologies enhance teaching and learning.
  • Engage in genuine dialogue and conversation with whānau. Know what the methods of gathering and responding to feedback will be, and publicise this widely.
  • Use a variety of communication channels. Build on your knowledge of your community in order to be inclusive with the expression of ideas. Alongside meetings, other ways to communicate include:
    • newsletters
    • school website
    • notices/emails home
    • social media (which provides a "many to many" communication channel).
  • Ensure you are well-informed and have considered the data, research, and best practice evidence to explore the idea of how to effectively use digital technologies to enhance learning.
  • Ensure digital citizenship documentation, such as policies and responsible use agreements, are up-to-date and reflect the values and vision of your school or kura and your community.
  • Engaging your community about learning with digital technologies.

Community engagement about learning with digital technologies through meetings may require multiple events. Two such occasions are suggested here, but more and/or repeated events may be needed. Consider holding events at different times of day and in different locations such as your local marae or church hall, depending on the context of your community.

Initial meeting

One of the key purposes of this meeting will be to help whānau to understand the "why" of learning with digital technologies so that there is continued positive partnerships for the benefit of all learners.

An initial meeting may comprise:

  • engaging the community in the vision for teaching and learning and exploring how digital technologies will support and enhance this
  • sharing success stories of the learning that is afforded by digital technologies from your own school, or other schools or kura. Include student voice. For example, these stories could be shared by the learners themselves
  • reiterating that learning is a three way partnership with whānau, learners, and school or kura, and providing support for whānau to understand how they might best help with their child’s learning using digital tools
  • providing activities to engage with the community to unpack and share their experiences and ideas
  • discussing the best ways to involve whānau and the community in ongoing dialogue.

Gathering feedback and gauging community feelings. Explain or negotiate what the channels for communication are, and how queries will be responded to, for example via an FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) page on your school or kura’s website; through follow up events; directly through an email or face-to-face conversation. There could be an invitation to join a whānau focus group, or build from an existing group, to provide ongoing engagement.

Covering practicalities, for example how: issues of equity will be addressed; devices will be funded; devices will be kept secure, and learners will be supported in their learning online; and what the expectations will be for day-to-day learning.

Focusing on the learning rather than the tools. It may be useful to refer to research, case-studies, or examples that support the use of digital technologies to enhance learning, or to show how research can be accessed, for example from an e-Learning page on the school or kura’s website.

Developing and reinforcing a shared understanding of digital citizenship practices for kaiako, teachers, whānau, and students.

It may be worth providing various means to gather questions and feedback, for example through a digital tool such as Padlet, on sticky notes or via email. An open forum for questions could potentially lead to a few voices or themes dominating so may not be as helpful. Gathering questions and recording them for a later response might be an alternative, but draw on your knowledge of your community and its context.

Follow-up meeting 

One of the purposes of this meeting may be to showcase how learning at your school or kura has been transformed through access to digital technologies.

A follow-up meeting may comprise:

  • modelling modern learning practices by avoiding leading the meeting from the front of the room
  • developing learner agency by maximising student-led opportunities, for example have students teach their whānau a digital tool they use for learning, or have student ambassadors who lead whānau around stations set up to showcase learning
  • showcasing learning by sharing examples of recent student work afforded by digital technologies. These examples should highlight students using technologies to support learning in creative and imaginative ways
  • showing clearly how learning has changed and developed through the use of digital technologies. It may be appropriate to refer to student achievement data, results of surveys, and/or evaluations of a BYOD trial or pilot
  • checking in with your community about the changes they have noticed.

Commit to ongoing engagement with community 

Community meetings, such as those suggested here, should not be one-off events, but build upon a strategy of ongoing engagement through a variety of formats and channels, such as those suggested above. When thinking particularly about learning with digital technologies and the need to build and maintain support from your community, consider these opportunities for ongoing communication:

  • The induction process for whānau and learners new to your school or kura.
  • As you explore collaborative teaching and learning practices.
  • As you move towards Innovative Learning Environments.
  • As learning evolves in response to new technologies.
  • As digital citizenship and digital fluency practices evolve.
  • As you start to explore and embed Digital Technologies and Hāngarau Matihiko in the Technologies learning area.
Useful links and resources

Examples of schools’ presentations

School stories

Filter by: Primary

Online resources supporting te reo and tikanga Māori

Online resources supporting te reo and tikanga Māori

Te Kura o Tiori Burnham School principal, Rob Clarke talks about setting up Taha Māori @ Te Kura o Tiori as part of their school website. 

e-Portfolios in the classroom

e-Portfolios in the classroom

Associate Principal and Senior Team Leader at Te Kura o Tiori Burnham School, Linda Sweeny, explains the process for setting up Blogger for students to use as an e-Portfolio. 

e-Portfolios - the benefits for student learning

e-Portfolios – the benefits for student learning

Deputy Principal Miranda Makin explains the benefits of using e-portfolios for students participating in the Impact Projects .

Sharing learning using the class blog and e-portfolios

Sharing learning using the class blog and e-portfolios

Teacher, Jacqui Innes from Russell Street School describes how students individual e-portfolios and the class blog serve different purposes but work in conjunction with each other. 

Using e-portfolios to record the learning process

Using e-portfolios to record the learning process

Russell Street School teacher, Jacqui Innes, describes the process and benefits of planning explicitly for what students will share on their e-portfolios.

Te Kura o Kutarere

Connecting with the community

Principal, Dave McShane, teacher Susan Lee, and kaumatua from Te Kura o Kutarere discuss how technologies have helped to engage the local community to support and share students learning.

Connecting teachers, students, and family

Connecting teachers, students, and family

Students and teachers talk about how they share their work, the ease with which they can do it, and the different tools they use.

Home–school partnerships

Home–school partnerships

Finlayson Park school has set up a computer lab and fund a teacher aide to provide teaching on how to use computers and the Internet for parents. 

Study centre

Study centre

Finlayson Park School work with the philosophy of doing more for many with less. They have set up a free after school study centre for students to allow them access to computers and the Internet as many families don't have Internet access from home. 

e-Competencies in action at the KidsCan Film Festival

e-Competencies in action at the KidsCan Film Festival

At the KidsCan film festival in Nelson 70 students were put together for three days to create films. Kellie McRoberts describes students' development of e-competencies within this project. 

Using technologies to connect with the community

Using technologies to connect with the community

Principal Jane Danielson explains the different applications they are using to connect with their community. 

Using e-portfolios to share students learning

Using e-portfolios to share students' learning

Rob Clarke principal of Burnham School describes the benefits of using e-portfolios in the school community to connect with parents.

Engaging your school community using technologies

Engaging your school community using technologies

Rob Clarke, principal of Burnham School, explains the importance of face-to-face meetings in terms of successful whānau and community engagement with e-learning tools.

Sharing a mihi

Sharing a mihi

Students at Burnham School found the process of creating and sharing a mihi, which involved engaging with their families and the community to research into their past and using technology to share that with their parents/whānau for feedback, was valuable.

Using Ustream to share assemblies

Using Ustream to share assemblies

James Rea, DP at Russell Street School, shares how they are using Ustream to live stream their school assemblies.

Using blogs to communicate with the school community

Using blogs to communicate with the school community

James Rea, DP at Russell Street School, shares how students are using their library blog to post book reviews and character profiles.

Maximising technology to support learning between home and school

Maximising technology to support learning between home and school

Technology enables access to the Internet and removes communication barriers for Wadestown School student, Renée Patete.

Stop motion animation to promote literacy

Stop motion animation to promote literacy

Sue Martin uses stop motion animation with her students to promote narrative skills, particularly sequencing and retelling. 

Improving written and oral language with multimedia

Improving written and oral language with multimedia

Sally McDougall and her students explain their process for writing book reviews and creating QR codes to share them with the wider community.

Engaging parents in learning through technology

Engaging parents in learning through technology

Hillcrest Normal School teacher, Michelle Macintyre shares how technology has enabled parents to be involved in different ways with students' learning.

Using mobile devices to improve communication

Using mobile devices to improve communication

Parents from Holy Cross School explain how they are able to connect easily with the school, using mobile devices and different forms of digital media.

Mobile devices at home

Mobile devices at home

Holy Cross School student, Coretti and her mother, Fiona Tuffs, discuss how using a mobile device makes access to schoolwork easier. Corretti explains how the iPad is changing the way she learns. 

Parent technology sessions

Parent technology sessions

Holy Cross School principal, Kathy Moy-Low explains how they consulted with and engaged the parent community in e-learning. Parents explain why they attend the after school parent technology sessions. 

Introducing digital technologies to the community through student voice

Introducing digital technologies to the community through student voice

Staff and students of Ruawai Primary School used student voice to share with their parent community the ways in which digital technologies are used to support learning, and to share what students are learning with their families.

Bringing the classroom to the community

Bringing the classroom to the community

Staff at Mahurangi Christian School discuss how the school connects the classroom to the community through digital technologies.

Using the eLPF to inform strategic planning at Waerenga o Kuri

Using the eLPF to inform strategic planning at Waerenga o Kuri

Principal, Richard McCosh explains how they used the e-Learning Planning Framework to identify strengths and areas needing development within their school.

Developing a framework to support Māori achieving success as Māori

Developing a framework to support Māori achieving success as Māori

The board of trustees, parent community, and school leadership team at Waerenga O Kuri School explain the collaborative process they used for developing their Māori achieving success as Māori (MASAM) framework.

A student’s perspective of inclusive education

Inclusion

Waerenga o Kuri student, Herepo Wynyard talks about how the involvement of her whānau both online (through her e-portfolio), and face-to-face at school has encouraged success with her learning goals.

Benefits of the MASAM framework for the school community

MASAM framework

Motu School community share their perspectives on the partnership that has been built based on the Māori achieving success as Māori (MASAM) framework they developed together.

Seamless learning facilitated by BYOD

Seamless learning facilitated by BYOD

Connor Fitzgerald-Mansell, a student from Hillcrest High School, describes the benefits of bringing his own laptop to school.

Connecting with ICTs

Connecting with ICTs

e-Learning teacher Mervyn Cook and student Connor Fitzgerald-Mansell, from Hillcrest High School, discuss the benefits of being able to connect via ICTs during outside of scheduled class time.

Māori achieving success as Māori – setting up a framework

Māori achieving success as Māori – setting up a framework

Motu School principal, Paul Cornwall explains the process they went through to setup a framework for Māori achieving success as Māori (MASAM).

Parents engaging in student learning

Parents engaging in student learning

Motu School community talk about the positives of parents engaging in their children's learning.

Creating MASAM – Collaborating with the community

Creating MASAM – Collaborating with the community

Parents, BOT, and teachers from Motu School discuss their collaboration around whanaungatanga to create their Māori achieving success as Māori (MASAM framework).

BYOD – Information and support for parents

BYOD – Information and support for parents

Teacher and e-learning leader, Kate Friedwald explains the information provided for parents at Wairakei School to introduce a BYOD trial for Year 5/6 students in 2014.

Setting up BYOD in the classroom at Wairakei School

Setting up BYOD in the classroom at Wairakei School

Kate Friedwald describes step-by-step the process she went through from researching BYOD to setting up a classroom learning programme using BYOD at Wairakei School.

Outcomes from the BYOD pilot at Wairakei School: Parents reflect

Outcomes from the BYOD pilot at Wairakei School: Parents reflect

Parents from Wairakei School describe the benefits that being in a BYOD class has had for their children.

Improving student writing using blogs

Improving student writing using blogs

Wairakei School teacher and her student explain why blogging encourages students to produce better quality work because it is being seen and commented on by an authentic audience.

Building connections with parents and whānau

Building connections with parents and whānau

Wairakei School principal Shane Buckner explains the benefits of using digital technologies to build connections with parents and whānau.

Māori succeeding as Māori

Māori succeeding as Māori

Chris Luke, teacher at Coastal Taranaki School, talks about the Te Ika Unahi Nui initiative, using digital technologies, and the benefits this has had for Māori students.

Strengthening Māori identity, language, and culture

Strengthening Māori identity, language, and culture

Students and parents from Coastal Taranaki School talk about the difference marae-based learning has made to their engagement, motivation, and confidence.

Marae-based learning Puniho Pā

Marae-based learning Puniho Pā

Coastal Taranaki School teacher, Chris Luke explains how he connects students' learning at the marae with the learning in the classroom.

Teaching and learning with Māori tradition and modern technology

Teaching and learning with Māori tradition and modern technology

Te Ika Unahi Nui is a wānanga (learning) partnership between Tarawainuku marae, Coastal Taranaki School, and the local community.

Planning the new build, a school and community partnership

Planning the new build, a school and community partnership

Halswell School principal, Bruce Topham explains key steps in planning and building an innovative learning environment that is part of the community.

Connecting with the community through social media

Connecting with the community through social media

Rosin Lamb, Communications Manager at Pakuranga College, explains how they use social media to connect with the community.

Sharing student learning

Sharing student learning

Staff and students from Apiti School discuss the benefits of using e-portfolios to share student learning with parents and the community. 

Connecting learning and the community

Connecting learning and the community

Teacher, Nicki Fielder and students from Apiti School explain the different social media tools they use to connect with parents and the wider community.

The Katote cluster – working together

The Katote cluster – working together

Graeme Barber, Principal at Woodend School, discusses the ways in which the Katote cluster works together to create a seamless transition for students moving from primary to secondary school.

Engaging with parents

Engaging with parents

Parents from Hampden Street School share how the school’s open door approach gave them confidence that their children’s learning needs were being met in an innovative learning environment.

BYOD – Consulting with your community

BYOD – Consulting with your community

Pakuranga College deputy principal, Billy Merchant explains their ongoing community consultation process, which includes how and why students devices, and digital citizenship. 

SMS – Connecting parents, students, and teachers

SMS – Connecting parents, students, and teachers

Michael Malins, principal at Konini School, talks about the app they use within the student management system to record, "children's progress... to keep the learning alive in the parent's mind and student's mind".

Learning partnerships with parents

Learning partnerships with parents

Parents of Hampden Street School students explain how blogging and e-portfolios help them stay connected with their children's learning.

The Leamington learner

The Leamington learner

The Leamington Learner concept, or dispositions, is the school’s strategic focus and foundation for enhanced achievement. Owned by the school community, technological capability is an integral component.

Community consultation on the iPad initiative

Community consultation on the iPad Initiative

Parents of students at Leamington School explain how the school prepared parents and the wider community for BYOD implementation.

Kōrero tahi me te whānau image

Māngātuna - Kōrero tahi me te whānau

E whakaatu ana tēnei ataata i te hononga a te hapori, ka tahi, mā te whakapapa, ka rua, mā te ipurangi, arā ko Pukamata.

Children Skyping

Making connections globally

Teacher at Newmarket school, Virginia Kung, talks about how they have made connections with people across the world through Twitter and Skype.

Children using iPads

Home school partnerships

Teacher, Reubina Irshad, explains how they create home school partnerships by helping parents to support their child’s learning at home.

Whanaungatanga

Whanaungatanga

Newmarket School teacher, Reubina Irshad talks about how they connected with whānau during their Matariki celebrations.

Teacher working

Setting up the Kaikohekohe Trust

Lee Whitelaw, Convening principal at Ohaeawai School, explains why they set up a Trust for the purchasing of their Chromebooks and the process they went through to do that.

The entrance to a school. A girl stands at the fence of the school reading a book.

Setting up and establishing the flipped approach at Ashhurst School

Ashhurst School Principal, Heath Chittenden, explains how they got teachers and parents prepared before rolling out flipped learning in their school. “Flipped learning is really important to be a school-wide focus because it actually is a pedagogical change to how you approach teaching.”

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