As part of our continued professional development programme at school, we are undertaking professional enquiries from a choice of 12. These enquiries will be made up of groups of teachers enquiring into aspects of education, teaching and learning and hopefully engendering some positive change.
I was asked to facilitate the PEG (professional enquiry group) looking at personalisation, so as part of our 3 day staff conference staff could opt to go to a taster session for 4 of the PEGs before choosing the enuiry group we wanted to work with after half-term for the rest of the year. In my taster session, I started off by having a rolling powerpoint of groups linked to a painting by a famous artist. Two of the groups had their first or nicknames and a picture of themselves on the powerpoint, 1 group had their Mr/Ms name and a photo, 1 group had initials and no photo, and one group just had surnames. I was delightful to my first two groups during the connect the learning activity (draw what affects how you work on a daily basis), giving them sweets and praising them whilst I shouted at and and ignored the other groups. In the first review, straight after the connect, we discussed how that classroom set up made them feel. One colleague said that I "treated us differently, you gave different things to different groups of people." So I asked him, was that differentiation? We then discussed how one enquiry might be the difference between differentiation and personalisation. How can we ensure that school is personal to every child, not just to groups of learners? How do we ensure that we treat Amy as Amy and not just as CAT=108, MQT =B UQT=A? We then looked at this video which makes some interesting points about schooling and personalisation.
This led to some very interesting discussion about how we shift from organisation to personalisation and what kind of shifts we might need to make in our school in order to achieve a personalised school which has 2,300 students in it! Not an easy task!
We then watched some excerpts of another video which is an animation based on an RSA talk given by Sir Ken Robinson last year. I watched the talk last year and thought it was great, but the new animation just takes it to another level! A fascinating, question raising talk!
After some more discussion, we finally used the thinking dice to generate some possible lines of enquiry we may follow over the next 9 months. (If you have not seen the thinking dice, they are great, check them out here.) We generated some interesting questions using the stems and the question I think I am going to enquire into personally is "How do we get from organisation to personalisation?"
This, Dear Reader, is where I need your help! Any thoughts, questions, links, arguments, reading materials, examples of great practice in this area would be most warmly welcomed. I am hoping to use crowd sourcing as a way to do some really deep research into this area and share back any findings with you. I am considering how best to do this (part of my enquiry cycle!) and at the moment am going to ask for any comments to be made on this blog post (although I am thinking about a wiki) and I am also going to use the twitter tag #org2pers when gathering information from the wonderful professional learning network I am part of on Twitter.