Saturday, November 12, 2011

Film Festival 2011

The Manaiakalani Film Festival was held on November 9th at Hoyts Extreme Screen Sylvia Park.
This was our 4th annual film festival and again saw 2000+ kids attend screenings during the day and a full house for the Evening Showcase.

Our first three Film Festivals were held at Tamaki College in their auditorium and last year our friends from the Tamaki Transformation Programme encouraged us to be brave and go extreme!

Film Extravaganzas have become popular with schools in recent years and we gained our inspiration from the Nati Awards on the East Coast.  I suspect the MADE Awards, also held this week with Bay of Plenty schools, may have had roots in the Nati Awards also.

Our cluster of schools made a conscious decision from the first  to make our Film Festival non-competitive and instead be a showcase of our "Learn, Create, Share" pedagogy.  It is complex enough to honour all the work put in by students and teachers when it is a celebration event, and I can imagine organising it competitively would be more challenging still.

We display all our movies on the cluster website here
and encourage people to follow the links to the class blogs where the movies are actually embedded.  That way the students can track who has been visiting and enjoy receiving feedback on their blogs. I'm sure there is an element of competition around how many visitors and comments their movies receive :)

A massive amount of organisation goes into a major event like a Film Festival, and this year we decided to create a website using Google Sites and to put all our organisation out there in the public.   That gave everyone a one-stop-shop to visit for all information from bus timetables to the role of principals when attending a daytime session. 
Link to Film Festival organisation website

Hopefully by making the organisation public other clusters and groups of schools will be able to use it too. And of course it will be much easier to retire from the Producer role if the organisation is easy to access!

More photos from the day were taken by Karen Ferguson from Tamaki College and displayed on Flickr here.

Apple sMACdown

One of the highlights of ULearn11 in Rotorua was the annual Apple sMACdown.
The session blurb began:

  • Innovate. Create. Celebrate.
  • Bring out the inner Fanboy / Fangirl.
  • Apple users get together for a fun session of sharing the interesting, cool, funky and fun things we can do using Apple products.
  • Share your ideas, favourite apps, tips and tricks with fellow enthusiasts. ....
We welcome all comers, but do begin the session every time with, 
"The only thing you are NOT allowed to ask over the next 80 minutes is - 'Will this work on a PC?'. Because for 80 minutes we don't have to care!"

Quite a crowd showed up and the panelists had plenty of competition from the floor for funky and useful tips with all the Mac addicts present.

Our website link is here

  • The contributions from all the panelists are linked down the sidebar.
  • Scroll down to the bottom of the home page to find links to all the crowd sourced contributions.
Next time you have a few minutes you'll find heaps to explore and learn from , or book mark it and keep coming back.

Thanks to Matt Thomas, Allanah King, Georgie Hamilton, Marcus Norrish, Kent Somerville, Stuart Hale and Fiona Grant for your contributions to the panel.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Hope and a future

"Uganda is going to be as developed as America, as any other country."!
This boy has a fire in his belly and an inspiring goal .  Maybe our dreams for our students are a wee bit small!
Thanks to Julie Trell for sharing this from her to visit Sr. Miriam Dugan Primary School in Kamwokya, a slum in Kampala Uganda.