Attending the DEECD Innovation Showcase today highlighted the amazing and inspiring environments that are being created by students and teachers in Victorian schools. It kicked off with 2 incredible Secondary school students as MCs who were articulate, confident and brilliant ambassadors for both their schools and their generation. Another highlight in the opening was Monica Scully of Huntingdale Primary School, who talked about the bilingual education that students at her school experience and the benefits it has been shown to provide.

The practitioner showcases had been hard to choose from as so many were appealing. I watched and talked to students in the ‘Learning through games’ room, where learning through play was clearly demonstrated. I was particularly impressed by Meredith Primary School and their ‘Digital sandpit’ time to promote school attendance and the very articulate students from Tyrrell College who were keen to discuss the learning that happened through and around online games such as ‘Lord of the Rings’.

The next two sessions highlighted for me that innovation doesn’t have to involve new technologies – it can just as easily be about rethinking our practice, identifying problems and finding solutions through creativity and imagination. Staff from Ouyen Pre-School discussed their use of flip cameras to assess and record the learning of children in their care and River Gum Primary School students and teachers wowed the audience with examples of multimedia embedded deeply throughout their curriculum. As I said, it was a good reminder that innovation comes in all sorts of packages but is primarily a change response to an identified problem. Both presentations triggered my own ideas that could change and improve my own setting, some small and some ambitiously over-large.

Finally, after an inspiring performance from Cultural Infusion, we were treated to a closing keynote by Anh Do. As well as many laughs, I’m sure I wasn’t the only one in the room wiping away tears as he wove his inspiring tale of overcoming adversity and always ‘having a go’. He reminded me why I teach – because I believe that all children deserve the chance to dream that they are capable of achieving anything and that education can open those doors for them.

Thanks to the organisers and those who contributed in whatever way to the showcase – events like these renew our enthusiasm, provide new ideas and inspirations and remind us why we teach. If you couldn’t attend but want to be inspired, try the Educators’ Guide to Innovation where you can make connections with some of the amazing educators who presented today.

7 thoughts on “innovation

    • Thanks for the comment and sorry you couldn’t be there – it was definitely an inspiring day. Let’s just hope that it really won’t be the last!

  1. Thanks for that summary. I can well and truly echo it all, as strangely enough I was in all the same sessions at the same time !! I looked around for the tweeters but couldn’t make them out – there was a good number of iPads and iPhones around.

    I watched the lovely kinder teachers from Ouyen and thought that they were the epitome of good teachers – so passionate about their young students. Their use of the Flips was simple but very meaningful.

    I also thought that Katrina Reynon summed it up well. Still thinking about Anh Do’s stories – must buy the book !

    Now I dont know what to blog – you have said it all

    • Thanks for the comment, Celia – that’s funny that we were in the same sessions! I spent the breaks looking around trying to match people to their avatars and it was always funny to read a tweet from a session I was in and think ‘who said that?’!

      You’re right about the teachers from Ouyen – it’s great to see passionate educators and I was really impressed by their simple and effective use of technology.

      I hope you still blog about it – always good to read other’s opinions!

  2. with this government it’s just an opportunity to shift to the private sector and outsource the entire operation and turn a profit out of the activity.

    if lucky VIEU and AEU will pick it up

    if not it will turn into another extravaganza well attended but lighter in weight…HBE/The AGE..etc..all good but aimed at selling their something

    the innovations showcase has been envied for a few years as independents and CEO were not able to attend… next year perhaps they can!!

  3. Thanks for the positive feedback macgirl19. As one of the team of organizers, it’s really heartening to know the hard work pays off and people got a lot from the event. Thanks also for the link to educators guide to innovation – it’s a great way to stay in touch with others interested in innovation. Connecting with others is inspiring and ensures that great ideas keep growing and spreading

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