Thursday, 3 December 2009

last day

Man, what an adventure. Today was the last day of the three day project. We started off into the city where we jumped on the ferry, then we were off to devonport. Once at devonport they found the teacher, I have never seen 30 students run across a busy road like that before, they collected there next clue which put them up to the south battery at north head, they had 1 hour to get up there, find the clue, and get back. Which all the teams managed, once back on the ferry they had a chance to relex before setting off for the next one at victoria park market, which noone managed to get right first time round. this is where we had a problem, the GPS units and the software i used to program the coordinates in did not match up which means we had to come up with another puzzle for the students to do, it also meant they were able to come together, talk about what they had done so far, and talk about strategy, which two teams came together to create one. I will have to think about this for next year. They then ran off to the sky tower to complete the next task, which a number of them missed the vital clue, and came up with the wrong answer a number of times. Then off to a shop to count the number of mice in the christmas display. I think we need to make actual rules about the numbers, because they really do need to go back and get the right answer instead of counting numbers. Maybe pen and paper, or the txt based system that seemed to work out well.
Off to albert park to find a quote on a sculpture where the students went around asking questions to people, I liked the answer of "I don't know, I will have to start paying a bit more attention to things around here as I come here every day".
Off to santas mail box in Brittomart square, where they had to get the railway stations in order on the southern line. One team struggled with this for a long time, as they had travelled that line three times in the past 2 days, i would have thought better.
It has been a great day, and a great three days.
Would i do it again, at the moment I would say no. As I believe that there are other things that we can do as well. I don't want to have to do the same thing over and over, it is not like me.

What have I taken out of this
I wish to get back into orienteering, I have just shown myself that something I did as a high school student and the learning and attitude that I gained through the sport at school and the interactions with the teachers and community that I was involved with, I was able to bring and show students various aspects of something I enjoyed when I was there age.
I was able to bring technology into a real and functional aspect of learning, all this stuff about cellphones not being able to be used in class, here I was pushing the boundaries of using cellphones in this experience, this was needed as a health and safety aspect as there was no way a teacher was going to be able to keep up with these students. A trip we did in 25 minutes, the students did in 10 minutes. The GPS devices have been a great addition into this as well, using this for navigation for day 2 was all about waypoints and puzzles, this is the day that the students enjoyed the most, well that is what they have been texting me.
I miss doing Education Outside the Classroom. That I can create an interesting and enjoyable program for the students, where they don't even know that they are learning. That I have to keep other people in the loop a bit better, and let some of the responsibility go.
That the weather is not a factor in this, students have been out in the rain and enjoyed it, they don't need jackets, Auckland is a hot environment, and we have been hitting 100% humidity 4 times in the last 2 days, and this rain has helped keep the kids cool.

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