Monday, May 25, 2015

Module 2 (Topic 1): Mentoring conversations

Topic 1: Virtual mentoring roles
Ma whero ma pango ka oti ai te mahi
With red and black the work will be complete
 (When we co-operate the work is completed)

Many roles are required in the mentoring journey:
·      role model
·      champion
·      cheerleader
·      leader
·      guide
·      adviser
·      counsellor
·      coach 
·      sponsor 
·      protector 
·      preceptor
Mentees must be given a voice.  My role as a mentor may vary frequently depending on the situation, time, and challenge.  I can support by encouraging my mentee to hold a mirror to their practice.

Steps in the mentoring model:
·      Listen without interruption
·      Invite more information
·      Summarise/paraphrase
·      Check
·      Follow where your mentee goes
·      Move to possibility and action
·      Systemic connection
·      Specific action and timeline…

Working through this module requires us to think of qualities of someone who has been or is of significant support in my life.  I have chosen to reflect on a friend who is always there, supporting me in my various family, work, life balance roles.  I am extremely grateful for this support!

Qualities of my significant supporter:
·      listener;
·      challenger;
·      calmer;
·      provoker;
·      supporter;
·      reassure;
·      honest reflector;
·      realist;
·      positivist;
·      friend.

Western roles of a mentor can be described as follows:
·      directive,
·      non-directive,
·      nurturing and
·      stretching.

Placing a cultural lens on mentoring roles allows for Pasifika terms:
·      Directive - Fa'a tonu
·      Guiding - Ta'ita'i
·      Exploring - Iloilo / Su'e su'e
·      Supporting - Lagolago
·      Challenging - Lu'i tau
·      Catalysing - Fa'atupa manatu

The role of questioning is critical in our mentoring role:
·      Investigator (knowledge): Who, what, when, where, why, how . . . ? Could you please describe . . . ? 
·      Guide (comprehension): Would I be right in thinking...? What did you understand from...?” 
·      Mentor (application): How do you feel X is an example of Y?; How would you say that X is related to Y?; Why do you feel that X is significant in your context? 
·      Coach (analysis): What are the identifiable aspects of . . . ? Would you classify X according to Y? 
·      Investigator (synthesis): What are your thoughts around solutions for . . . ? What would you infer from . . . ? What are your additional reactions to . . . ? How might you go about designing a new . . . ? What could happen if you added . . . ?  
·      Advisor (evaluation): What do you about trying . . . ? What is the most important outcome for.. . ? Which would you say are the highest priority for . . . ? What would help you decide to . . . ?
DVM Module 2:1

McKenzie's Questioning Toolkit 17 types of question are listed
Active listening involves comprehending, retaining and responding.

The more time I spend with the DVM modules, the more enthralled I become.  Like anything, the more you read and do, the more you realize how much there is to read and learn, the more I want to read and learn. 

As mentoring increasingly becomes our way of supporting Principals and e-leaders, I am grabbing any opportunity available to grow myself in this role. 

I have just started reading the book  “A more beautiful question” which is challenging me and growing me in my curiosity… but that is another post, another read, another day…

12 Apostles

Wow, such great memories!  Delighted to find this video.  I blogged about it all here

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Modern Learning Practice - Module one

Catching up on my online learning! 
As I work my way through my modules I will share my thoughts and wonderings here.  
Today I am beginning with rethinking learners, looking at a learner's perspective.  How well this ties in with last Thursday night's #edchatnz (

What a wonderful set of questions to begin to unpack! 
Already this is helping me with my facilitation role!  As I am preparing for a session on collaborative planning, I think this slide is a wonderful place to start.  The value will be in the discussion around the learner perspective. 

This also causes me to reflect on the four questions we were introduced to by Lynda Kaser and Jane Halbert:
Four big questions:
1.     Where are you going with your learning?
2.     How’s it going? Matched to criteria…
3.     Where to next?
4.     Can you name two adults in this school who believe you will be a success in life? 
"As a learner, I expect to take joint responsibility for and be seen as an active agent in determining my own learning priorities.” 

How well do we know our learners?

I am loving our UDL approaches which ensure we get to know as much as possible about our our learners.

How often do we really dig into our learner's opinions of what they are learning, what choice they are having with their learning, whether or not it is meeting their needs?

Te Reo Puāwai Māori resources

During the next seven weeks I am going to be completing a Te Reo Puāwai Māori course.  As a way of gathering sharing resources I am going to continue to add links here for anyone to use to support their language learning journey.  I hope you enjoy learning along with me. 

CORE Education podcasts

MLP/MLE catching up on #edchatnz

What a fabulous recording of the thoughts, wonderings, ideas and challenges from educators. I hate missing #edchat! Thanks so much to Marnel for the opportunity to catch up asynchronously!

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Te Reo Puāwai Māori

Tūawhitia te hopo - feel the fear and do it anyway.

Kīanga - Phrases
Kei a koutou - Up to you all (3+)
He pātai ā koutou? Any questions?
He pātai tāku - I have a question
Me inoi tātou - let us all pray
Mai i te topi - From the top (start)
Kia pai tō rā - Have a good day
He whakaaro noa iho - just a thought

Kupu hou - new words
puāwai - to blossom/bloom
kaitautoko - supporter/cheerleader
tuatahi - first
Whāinga - goals
kāo/kāore - no
Āe - yes
Paramanawa - morning tea
tō - your
ahau/au - me/I
tohutō - macron
anō - again
matua - dad
mātua - parents
moumou - waste 

Use images and word posters to support me in my journey!
Practice in our sessions.
Make whakatauki, karakia and waiata a part of our facilitative practice.
Commit to our weekly sessions, our modules, and the forum - really looking forward to seeing our relationships grow.

A huge mihi to Gemma, Anaru and Rochelle for a fabulous face to face day. From the moment we arrived til the moment we left there was a surreal feeling of openness, connectedness, willingness to take a risk, learn and grow together.  From my perspective this was due in part to some of the following:

  • We had your online welcome;
  • We arrived to a room set up with flexibility, space and choice of seating and groupings;
  • Arrangements on our table gave a distinct New Zealand flavour;
  • Friendly greetings from you all;
  • Enthusiasm of participants;
  • Very relaxed, welcoming feel;
  • First session - the web of connectedness was amazing.  So many connections were made to set the scene for growing these throughout the day. 
Thanks to all the participants!  What an exciting journey we are on!

Wednesday, May 13, 2015


One of my favourite children’s books is Mem fox’s Wilfred Gordon McDonald Partridge.  I have always loved the images, the story and the concepts of memories. 
As I am faced with an immediate family member with memory issues I am reminded of the power of memories, whatever they are, and how they are interpreted. 
·      Are our memories locked in as we experience them and sealed for all time?
·      Are memories started with an experience and grown as we reflect on them and view photos recording these memories?
·      Are they shaped by conversations with those whom we shape our memories with?
·      Are memories stored logically?
·      How do we determine what creates a significant impact, and stays etched in our memory forever?
·      Why do we only remember the very good, and very ‘not so good’ experiences sometimes?
·      Can we change the way we remember?
I know there will be answers to these questions online.  Maybe it is not clinical answers I am after.  Maybe I am just trying to sort why memories are so complex, complicated and confusing when they muddle.  Why do some memories get stuck on replay in our minds?  Why do some memories disappear? 
How do we best support others with memory challenges.  I feel like an external hard drive…

What a rare and beautiful privilege this is…

Green Prescription

Have any of you heard of Green Prescription?  I had never heard of it until recently when talking with my doctor and discussing my increasingly busy work schedule which involves a lot of travel and sitting, and not a lot of time for me and exercise.
I had an appointment with a gorgeous young lady from Sport Otago who ‘facilitated’ a session incredibly well.  I now have short, mid and longterm goals around my fitness and health and well being.  Two weeks in and I am delighted to report that not only am I incredibly more active, I feel better, and I am loving the time I am making for me and getting out and about in the outdoors no matter where I am with work.  Over the past two days I have fitted in a 38min walk and a 53min walk.  Not only is it a fabulous break from the computer for me, it is a chance to walk, see the sights, listen to my music and reflect on the day.  I am loving it.  WHY then have I not made time for myself over the past two years?  What am I finding it so incredibly easy to fit some activity into every day?   Is it because of the accountability?  To my mentor? To my tracking sheet?  To myself – now that I have flicked the switch?  Great wonderings for me.  Up until my change of role I was a regular gym attendee, with at least 2-3 sessions per week.  My travelling life style with my facilitation role just doesn’t allow for this and I found that over 2014 I was nothing more than a ‘financial gym member’, the sort the gym owners love.  Pay the regular weekly fee, but never enter the building.  I refused to put the gym membership on hold because I saw that as a sign of admitting defeat.  The moment I did put it on hold though was a huge break through and now I am on a path of exercising wherever I am.
At a session recently, I heard for the first time, the saying “sitting is the new smoking”.  Since then I have repeatedly heard this phrase and the internet is chocka full of articles and images to support this claim.  I am now sharing little snippets of this phrase in my sessions and we are increasingly trying to make our sessions active. 

I have a growth mindset about my goals… I am not there YET but I have made a start, I am on the way and I am committed.