The establishment of the Toki Pounamu Education Trust is associated with a wider, comprehensive renewal programme for the West Coast, known as the West Coast Transformation Programme, and also an education initiative, known as the Toki Pounamu Programme, which involves schools and the community of the West Coast and the New Zealand Ministry of Education. "Toki Pounamu" is the 'Sharp Edge of Learning", being "Toki" (Maori Adze) symbolising authority, strength and triumph over adversity. The overall aim of the Toki Pounamu Education Trust is to develop the capacity of children and families in the West Coast community through the advancement of learning.

In particular, it is intended that the Toki Pounamu Education Trust will be involved in promoting, implementing and developing, in conjunction with various other stakeholders, learning infrastructure and programmes to be delivered on the West Coast, and will give children, families and teachers in the West Coast community the opportunity to access appropriate learning tools so that they can benefit from such infrastructure and programmes, both at school and at home.

The Toki Pounamu Trust grew out of the group of Westland schools involved in a successful Learning and Change Network in the Greymouth area.

"The Learning and Change Network strategy (LCN) was developed to accelerate achievement for students yet to achieve national expectations for literacy and numeracy through future-focused learning environments. Learning and Change Networks involves networks of students, parents, teachers, and community members from multiple schools to collaborate in developing innovative new learning environments" (source).

Grey Main Mandy O'Sullivan.m4v

Amanda O'Sullivan - Principal of Grey Main School, Convening Principal Toki Pounamu, Lead Principal Māwhera Kāhui Ako

Working with innovation

This approach to teaching will challenge what you think ‘learning’ is, and what schools are for. We are ‘all in this together’, with lots of professional learning, support, and varying challenges and changes to teaching practices. You'll experience the ups and downs of the learning pit, alongside your students.

Your school community has chosen to work collaboratively with other local Toki Pounamu schools with similar achievement challenges, who are wanting to access the Manaiakalani Outreach Programme:

What digital tools will I need to use?

Basic digital tools - link here for self-paced tutorials

  • Chrome web browser
  • Google Drive and Gmail, Google Calendar, and Google Docs, Drawing, Slides, Sheets, and Forms
  • 'New' Google Sites
  • Hapara Teacher Dashboard
  • Blogger
  • Screencastify
  • Chromebook
  • Optional for Y9-13 teachers - Hapara Workspaces

Know the 'Kawa of Care', and know how to work a Chromebook.

Visible Learning

Visible learning means that what you teach and what students learn, create and share is accessible online by anyone. Your learning site is the virtual extension of your classroom - it's where students go to 'rewind' previous lessons for deeper understanding, to know what's coming up, and to access learning resources. Students away on school trips or family holidays, or sick at home, can still see exactly what's going on, and can catch up.

Parents can see exactly what is going on in your classroom, at any time of the day. They can log into the Hapara Parent Portal and look through their child's folders in the same way they might look through a physical school book. They might even see their child working on a doc in real time. They can see their child's blog and comment on their learning anytime. They can see the teacher's professional learning blog too.

Teaching as Inquiry - Link here to learn more

'Learn Create Share' is central to teacher practice in the Outreach programme. Expect to develop a professional blog (publicly visible) to share your inquiry work. When we share our own learning digitally and publicly, we are modelling the digital immersion learning process that we are asking of our students, and students are better able to value and make sense of their own learning in a future-focused context. Explore the links below:

"For many teachers a reluctance to share is mostly about underestimating their own competence, shyness, fear of the ‘tall poppy’ syndrome or simply never having been told how good their ideas and practice are. I don’t think it is a competitive streak in most cases". "One significant barrier to teachers feeling empowered to share has been the term 'Best Practice' that is used by government, academics and senior management in education. We need to get away from this mentality which emphasises if something is being shared by a teacher it is considered to be an exemplary model of teaching for all to follow. Sharing (within the bounds of ethics, common sense and good taste) should be a snap shot of what I have learned today and I am putting it out there so you can learn from it too". Dorothy Burt

What do Toki Pounamu Lead Teachers do in each school?

How can iPads be used for 'Learn Create Share' in junior primary classrooms?

Learn Create Share - Link here to learn more

You'll be guided by the Learn Create Share framework to re-design how you deliver curriculum. This approach combines practices identified by research to be engaging, accelerating, and future-focused. You'll recognise the learning verbs, and you'll also see how the thinking skills become more complex as students create and share. You'll recognise the language of SOLO and other thinking skills taxonomies.

Learn Create Share is about 1:1 digital immersion, which is different from the e-learning, blended learning, and flipped classroom models and approaches of the last 15 years or so. We want to empower learners, young and old, to move beyond transmission, consumption and memorisation of information using digital tools, to also build, create, and share knowledge together, that is meaningful, personal, place and culturally located.

Effectively implementing Learn Create Share supports students to consciously develop a positive digital footprint, and become digitally fluent. Read more about what digital fluency means from this link on TKI.

What is digital fluency?

  • Digital fluency – A digitally fluent person can decide when to use specific digital technologies to achieve their desired outcome. They can articulate why the tools they are using will provide their desired outcome.

A digitally fluent student:

  • knows where and how to find and access information quickly and accurately
  • can critique the relevance and accuracy of information being accessed
  • is an adept producer of digital content
  • can recognise and use the most effective methods of reaching their intended audience
  • understands and demonstrates how use digital technologies responsibly including – digital security (self-protection), copyright.

What do principals, teachers, students, and whānau have to say about Toki Pounamu?

Check out the Toki Pounamu Twitter feed to see lots of learner blog posts.

SAMR - A guide for technology integration in the classroom - Link here to learn more

In this programme, digital immersion learning environments are for so much more than using a device to write assignments, make slide presentations, complete research, practice skills, and email. To support students to access the power of their Chromebook as a tool for creating knowledge (as opposed to only consuming information), and for sharing to improve learning, it is useful to apply the SAMR model in conjunction with 'Learn Create Share' as a guide to transforming teaching tasks and redesigning learning:

How does LEARN CREATE SHARE work at Greymouth High School?

Use this CHECKLIST to get started with key tools of digital immersion in your classroom.

Use this matrix and running observation sheet to identify current practice and next steps.

Grey High use this walk-through observation to get feedback on Learn Create Share implementation.

Checklist - Digital Immersion Basics
Faciliation in LCS Teaching & Learning
Implementation Matrix
Running Observation Sheet
Running Observation Sheet
Template GHS LCS Walk Through Observations
GHS LCS Observation Sheet

How does in-class facilitation work for first year digital immersion?

The Cybersmart curriculum is designed to enable students to learn how to:

  • Use their Chromebook and digital creativity tools efficiently
  • Apply learn create share and understand how a managed online environment works
  • Access their learning online and do online searching effectively
  • Blog and build a great digital footprint, and communicate positively online
  • Become media literate and increasingly critical and discerning of online content
  • and more...

Explore the other Outreach Communities around Aotearoa, New Zealand.