#01 Newsletter, 2022

Rāmere, te 12 o Pēpuere 2022

Nau mai ki te tau 2022! Welcome to 2022! 

We hope that everyone has had a restful break and is starting the year with a whizz and a bang! Each week we will bring you information linked to our four focus areas – Hauora, Te Ao Māori, 21st Century Learning, and Future Ready. As we are starting our year at Red under New Zealand’s traffic light settings, this term will no doubt be a challenge for us all. Until we are able to move freely between our kura and see each other face to face, feel free to make contact with either your Within School Leaders or Across School Leaders with any questions, ideas or resources you feel would benefit our Kāhui Ako. 

Kia haumaru/Stay safe and have a fantastic start to your school year!

Te Ao Māori 

Get your Kura $500 – Te Reo Course for School Staff – Te Ahu o Te Reo Māori

Te Ahu o Te Reo Māori, was set up by the MoE to help kaiako, support staff and board members to be able to confidently use te reo Māori in their kura. 

Everyone we know who have completed the course rave about the quality of instruction and the benefit to their practice and development. The bonus is that for every staff member who completes it, their kura receives $500. In our Kāhui Ako we already have a number of kaimahi/staff participating in the course this year.

According to the information we have received, the course runs over term 2 and 3 this year and will be held via zoom every fortnight. There are also 2 weekend wananga/courses, again via zoom, 1 in term 2 and the other in term 3.

To be eligible you need to be “a paid member of the education workforce or a volunteer who is affiliated to the Kōhanga, Puna Reo, ECE, kura or school and affects the learning of students in these spaces – as per the Ministry of Education’s guidelines [Link to MOE site]. This includes teachers, managers, Board of Trustee members, administrative staff, cleaners, sports coaches, kapa haka tutors, kaumātua.”

If you’re interested, you will need to have a signed pdf from their principal saying that they work in a school and then fill in a short survey. These courses are popular so if you’re interested sign up ASAP.

2022 Year Planner (Tauira view)

2022 Level Descriptors


There are two steps that you need to complete as a part of your enrolment.

  1. Complete the Endorsement Form attached and upload it as a requirement of your completing the Enrolment Form (Section 8). We have attached the form in Word format to this email. We have also linked a PDF copy of the same form here. We will accept a photo, a scanned copy or an e-signed copy of the completed form.
  2. Fill in the Enrolment Form click here

For more information, email or call: takatu.akld@gmail.com,  0800 825 200

Future Ready/Digital Curriculum/Anga Whakamua


In this awesome unplugged Digital Tech lesson created by Matua Geoff from OMG Tech, designed for Years 3-6. Students will learn:

  • 4 dance moves
  • how to communicate different moves with symbols/letters
  • to construct a dance byte (by creating a sequence of 8 movements – algorithm)

A fun and easy way to engage students in movement and coding!

Check out the full lesson here!

Digital Technologies for Juniors

Register for this free course designed for Junior teachers. It is full of unplugged activities and different ways you can bring digital technologies into the classroom! Aimed at juniors (ages 4-6yrs)!

Register for free here

Have you played The Stacking Game? It’s a fun hands-on activity which brings out junior students’ oral language and gets them sequencing, debugging, and communicating. 

February – March Teach with Chrome Series

Join our upcoming Teach With Chrome Series to learn about the latest in Chrome devices and Chrome OS for education.

Hear about our more powerful, secure, and sustainable Chromebook devices for educators – along with updated programs, resources, and Chrome OS advances – all purpose-built for education.

We’ll have Google experts and partners running demo-based training and presenting educational use cases in 30-minute sessions complete with Q&A.

Whether you’re a teacher, an administrator, or an IT leader, all of the sessions are designed to help you get the most out of Chrome. Can’t watch live? All sessions are posted right after the livestream finishes each day – just register to watch them on demand.

Link to register

Hauora/Learner Support

This event will address the challenges of the return to education, settling back into school routines, supporting pandemic-related anxieties, encouraging positive behaviour and re-establishing the relationships that enable children, young people, staff and families to flourish.

Hot Topics:

  • Guiding mental health education in schools
  • Creating trauma-sensitive classrooms to build resilience and foster compassion in the classroom
  • Indigenous voice: Culturally influenced wellbeing and resilience
  • Building a relational school culture: Connecting restorative practice and wellbeing
  • Case study: Implementing Pause, Breathe, Smile in a kura Māori setting 
  • Panel: Creating a psychologically safe space – school as a learning environment and a workplace

This conference is one of three being delivered online and focusing on teaching and learning 2022. See below for further details.

This important and timely new conference will address Aotearoa New Zealand’s poor educational achievement rates due to race-based inequity. It will provide a deep-dive into the drivers of inequity and systemic racism, an analysis of how this manifests itself in the education system, followed by an exploration of practical equity based approaches and initiatives that can help to overcome this.

Key themes:

  • Understanding the historical context of inequity
  • Co-design with whānau & communities: Bridging the gap between strategy, policy and people
    to achieve equity
  • Exploring the Equity Index and specific funding structures
  • Understanding how racism and implicit bias operate within the education system
  • Supporting students through transitions from secondary to tertiary

The Neurodiversity in Schools Conference addresses the increasing challenge for teachers and school staff to effectively manage a classroom with individuals with diverse needs. 

Attend the conference to hear from leading academics, psychologists, specialists, and practitioners to gain a deeper understanding of neurodiversity children, their behaviour, and practical tools to manage this in mainstream schooling.

Key themes:

  • Improving awareness and knowledge of neurodiversity
  • Complexities of diagnosis  
  • Funding, staffing, and resourcing
  • Engaging with families and wider whānau
  • Emotional regulation
  • Practical tools for the classroom

Link to register

21st Century Learning/Ako Ināianei Tonu

Curriculum: How to make more time for learning

If you’re teaching something simply because you ‘have to’, it might be time to ask if you can cut it out, says Mark Enser

The article below is written by Mark Enser, published online 28th January, 2022. The ideas link to the English Education System. However, many of the ideas discussed can be linked to educational challenges in NZ. A good 

Learning takes time. According to Richard Mayer’s select-organise-integrate (SOI) model of generative learning, we learn by selecting information from a source (this could be a teacher’s explanation, a video or an experience) and then organising it into a new form before finally integrating it into the schema, which sits in our long-term memory. 

The reason why learning can be time-consuming is that each one of these stages requires us to think hard. We have to carefully consider the material and decide which bits are relevant and which bits are not. We then have to do something with the information we have selected: turning text into diagrams or an explanation into a paragraph answering a question, for instance. The last step then involves us retrieving what we have already learned about this subject and working out how this new information assimilates with it.

If we skip any of these steps then we are less likely to generate learning and our time was probably spent in vain. 

However, the SOI model is something that teachers rarely need to consider. It simply sits in the background and forms the bedrock of what we think of as “just good teaching”.

Giving pupils time to grapple with complex questions, retrieve prior learning and apply it is common sense. And yet this good, simple teaching is often squeezed out by a desperate bid to cover everything before we reach the end of the lesson. Tasks get truncated as the clock counts down; we quickly give pupils the correct answers to record and have no time for dialogue and we hurry them out of the door. This means that pupils haven’t “thought”, but rather have just “transferred” and, as a result, haven’t learned.

Taking a fresh look at the curriculum 

It is an age-old problem. We want both breadth and depth but we want to achieve this in finite time. We have thousands of years of learning within our subjects that we want our pupils to have access to. Leaving something out feels like an act of barbarism, and so we try to cover it all. But coverage isn’t the same as learning. 

At this point it is tempting to throw our hands up. Isn’t our overstuffed curriculum there because of the whims of exam boards and government diktat? Well, to an extent, yes. Certainly in some subjects and in some key stages. However, even at GCSE there are often ways to be creative with the curriculum, to pick and choose what to linger over and what to skim past.

In some subjects, such as my own (geography), there are also opportunities to merge topics, rather than working solidly through the specification as though it were a de facto curriculum.

And outside of key stage 4, we arguably have even more freedom to cut things out. As a senior leader of education, I have been fortunate to have spent the past few years working with dozens of primary and secondary schools.

Most of this time has been spent talking through curriculum plans, and the question I most often ask is, “Why are you teaching that?” The most common response is, “I don’t know – we have just always taught it.” 

The national curriculum in England is, for most subjects, surprisingly light on content. It tends to point towards broad topics that should be covered, but not what should be taught within them or how much time should be dedicated to it. And yet there is still this odd assumption that anything listed on the national curriculum needs a term dedicated to covering it, regardless of what learning that leads to. 

I think we need to take a fresh look at the curriculum that we teach and start asking some questions about what we teach and why we teach it. If our first reaction is “because we have to” then we need to pause and really check if that is true.

We have more control over this than we think we do. If we start with the purpose, the intent, of what we want to achieve, we can start cutting out everything that doesn’t serve that purpose. 

Once that is done, we can concentrate on giving more time to the things that we have decided matter most and teaching them in a way that we know will lead to learning rather than coverage. 

Article Link

One response to “#01 Newsletter, 2022”

  1. Ka pai to mahi!


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