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Peer-exchange workshop for teachers - feedback, exchange and creativity

CCL peer-exchange workshop at BrusselsThe first Creative Classrooms Lab peer-exchange workshop for 23 teachers was organised in Brussels on 6-7 March 2014. The teachers were invited to the workshop to (1) give feedback, (2) to exchange and (3) to be creative. The participants represented all 9 CCL countries/regions. In the following are available some key points put forward by CCL teachers.

(1) To give feedback

Advantages working with tablets 

  • Motivation: Tablets trigger both students’ and teachers’ motivation.
  • Creativity: Tablets allow for the students “to do ‘the work’ and show their creativity”.
  • Responsibility: Students feel more responsible when creating a specific digital product to be shown to other students.
  • Personalisation: Tablets allow the teacher to prepare different tasks and different parts of a topic for each student according to his possibilities. Each student is engaged, as everyone learns according to his/her learning style.
  • More student centered teaching: With tablets, the lessons were more student centered, not teacher centered.
  • Greater variety of learning experiences: Students have access to a greater variety of learning experiences that include and extend beyond the traditional education settings and benefit from increased community involvement in students’ learning.

Challenges working with tablets

  • Assessment: Creativity is great. But it is a challenge to evaluate all the different outcomes of such a creative process.
  • Time: It takes time to explain new tasks using the tablets. Preparations of tablet activities before the class can also be time consuming.  It takes time for teachers and students to learn how to work with tablets and apps.
  • Technical issues: In particular in the beginning, teachers deal sometimes deal with unforeseen technical problems they cannot solve by themselves.
  • Students’ focus: Some students find it difficult to differentiate between core activities and side topics.

CCL Learning Stories to support tablet experimentations

The CCL teachers based their tablet experimentation during the first round of pilots on the first set of CCL Learning Stories. During the workshop, they were asked to provide feedback:

  • General Feedback: In general, teachers found the Learning Stories and support document helpful. “The idea of 7 model types of activities can be easily followed”, one teacher commented.
  • Level of detail: On the level of detail required for the CCL Learning Stories to be useful, opinions were divided. While some teachers prefer the learning story just to be a “frame” with not too many details, others would have welcomed more examples for each activity and adding learning goals/ outcomes.
  • Challenges: For some teacher, time and curriculum restrictions made it difficult to complete all steps of the learning story.  

(2) To exchange

In the session “Learn IT from Me”, each teacher demonstrated one app/tool or skill to the other teachers. Teachers generally appreciated this possibility to exchange knowledge. Please find below a small selection:

(3) To be creative

During the session “Creative Wisdom”, CCL teachers were asked to be creative: In groups, they created reflections on the CCL Learning Story they had worked on. The teachers proved that creativity is not only a title to the project: They created videos, comics, mind maps and even a game to reflect on their Learning Stories. The last task for CCL teacher was to create a digital postcard and to post it on the CCL Facebook group. This postcard was to summarize & reflect with others.

CCL postcard

Postcard created by CCL teacher Andreja Peńćovnik Mencinger (Slovenia)