Thursday, December 08, 2011

Ako Aotearoa academy symposium day 1 morning

Ako Aotearoa symposium day 2

Official start of symposium with mihi with Dr. David Jansen and a the singing of the academy waiata followed by welcomes and official address by Dr. Peter Coolbear.
Peter challenged academy members to reflect on the symposium's title ' celebrating diversity'. What is diversity? If it is for students, the NZ tertiary sector completion rates are a call for more work to be done as large sectors of students have poor completion rates when compared to the mainstream culture. Call for academy to be proactive in encouraging pursuit of excellence in tertiary teaching so as to enhance learning for ALL students.
How can we foster excellence in teaching as an academy, can the academy assist with setting up standards of tertiary teachers, need to think forward.

The morning begins with panel discussions with Marc Wilson coordinating.

David Jansen on Maori learners. Provided an overview how to better engage with Maori communities. Even though 23% Maoris speak Maori, still important to engage in Maori. There is diversity in Maori due to geographical distribution, urban/rural shifts away from tribal boundaries and need to recognize achievement. In general Maori value working in groups, using the Maori language.

Sandy Morrison on asia pacific association for adult and basic education (ASPBAE) - has the goal to build leadership and capability. Cultural depth and integrity valued in one context and perhaps not in another. Connecting pacific cultures by helping them to articulate their on 'ako' pedagogical model is one approach. Assisting migrant pacific workers when they come to NZ to value their culture and provide environments for further learning - learning in place, learning in context.

Ksenij Napan on second chance learners - discussed how derogatory the term may be and how it is important to establish another term -- 'interesting people'? Potentials include opportunity to explore peer learning, cultural / racial, religious, sexual orientations perspectives, social expectations of disabled, mature, differently literate etc.

Tracey Riley on gifted and talented students - generalisations as presented by others reflect the way in which gifted/talented students. Students often not identified when they proceed to tertiary education. Important to establish personal choice so that individuals able to choose how to learn, be assessed, maximising on their strengths but also guidance to identify skills, literacies to work more on.

Discussion followed with Marc eliciting searching questions from the audience.
Importance of engaging with students as individuals, with 'generalisations' as a beginning and then working with students to help them learn. helping students construct/engage with intercultural dialogue. Need to perhaps follow up on Ausse data (survey of university students) to unpack whether diversity is addressed (although just capturing ethnicity is too broad a brush).

Then concurrent workshops then proceeded. introduced by Dawn Garbett and consisted of having home groups (colour coded) for us to report back to.

multicultural arts with Jill Smith and Marty Vreede. Jill began with overview of research informing practice and her work with encouraging students to increase learning about cultural diversity. With an example of helping mainly pakeha student teachers use art to explore Asian viewpoints through art. Marty's session revolved around 'a paper on learning' with us participating in making paper from harakeke (flax) as we discussed aspects of philosophies of learning.

other sessions on :
Research supervision with John Hoskins and Marc Wilson

Sara Kindon with New New Zealanders

and will hear from others in the group on the content of these later in the day when we do the group debrief.

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