We are really liking the idea of this action calendar for February 2021, especially as it could be used to inspire younger learners to create their own versions.
For further information and resources, follow the link: https://www.actionforhappiness.org/february
We have been exploring Jamboard (Google Tool) and we are impressed with the possibilities that it offers in terms of online collaboration and communication.
During our initial 'play', we used our emoji check-in to create our first Jamboard template. If you use Google in your school/setting and it's useful to you, follow the link to get a copy that you can customise. (We've used a background image which seems to open better in the Chrome browser.)
We are thinking about creating further Jamboard templates for our toolkit - any thoughts, ideas or advice about this would be gratefully received. :-)
When we work on collaborative problem-solving, whether it be adults or children, one of the biggest hurdles to success is attitude. Not just our attitude towards solving the problem, but our attitude towards the people we are working with.
Building community is not always easy. Maintaining community is not always easy. Repairing community is not always easy. However, it becomes easier when we approach each other with respect instead of animosity; when we listen instead of just speak; when we empathise instead of persecute; when we include instead of isolate; and, when we are truthful instead of deceitful.
Who we are is important. Our identity, our beliefs and our values make up our sense of self. How we are is a manifestation of those beliefs and values – the way we interact with other people – our character.
If we are to build communities which are fair and safe, then character matters. It matters not only in uniting people through commonalities but also how we manage and work through our differences to make things better for everyone not just a few.
Always inspiring. Always relevant. Even more so as schools and settings return to a new academic year in 2020.
2010 - 2020
Today, we celebrate ten years of Single Steps Learning!
At the beginning of March, we were trying to decide when it would be best to take two or three days summer holiday, during July, as we prepared for a full event schedule in the academic year 2020/21.
Then coronavirus arrived and lockdown happened. Like everyone else, we had to figure out how to deal with the ‘new normal’ as our own personal circumstances dictated – different boats, same storm. For the first time in almost 10 years we were ‘off the road’ and facing a future that was, and still is, very uncertain.
In thinking about the future, we inevitably reflected on the past and what an incredible journey it has been…
We have enjoyed friendships with people, whose support and generosity has been so important to us and our survival. We have met so many inspiring people, who don’t recognise how good they are due to their genuine humility. We have had the opportunity of working with learners of all ages - being able to share in their challenges and achievements. Moreover, we have had the privilege of learning from them too.
In ten years, a lot has changed. On a professional level, we have been doing more settings-based projects than off-site training courses. On a personal level, we have climbed 17.6 Munros, and have 1760 more grey hairs between us!
What hasn’t changed is our belief that our thoughts and actions can make a positive difference to the lives of other people. For the last ten years, we have chosen to do that via Single Steps Learning by creating and designing experiences, which provoke engagement in the process of learning and building community, through collaborative problem-solving.
Whatever awaits us in the future, as Single Steps Learning or not, that belief will continue.
Thank you to everyone who has helped us, inspired us, supported us and, on occasion, challenged us. So, raise a glass (or a mug) with us tonight to celebrate! You are all part of Single Steps Learning.
Andrew and Lynne
Lockdown has a been a journey...for everyone. Year 6 (Primary 7) learners across the UK have had a different kind of transition experience. The class of 2020 in Aberbargoed Primary were offered a 'Summer School' as part of their approach and we were delighted to be invited to take part in Week One. A mini-project 'From Here To There'! It gave an opportunity to reflect on past projects whilst also engaging in new experiences and connecting to the future.
The first time we met these learners, they were Year 3. They have grown! It was an absolute pleasure to reconnect. Laughter, smiles, humour, concentration, enthusiasm, community. The two days were full of moments that we will treasure. The power of a smile. The power of community. Aberbargoed Primary - you have that power.
Best wishes to all those Year 6 learners as they embark on the next step of their journey. ?
Plus ça change, plus ce la meme chose!
The more things change…the more they stay the same.
Lockdown, social distancing, shielding, family bubbles. How quickly these words have become part of our everyday vocabulary. With the arrival of the covid-19 coronavirus, the world changed and the world had to respond to change.
Just days before lockdown, we witnessed education professionals, grappling with the challenges of how they were going to provide some kind of education continuity for their learners. How? When? What? Who? Why? All valid questions which were often met with responses which would sometimes be invalidated the following day.
It was, and still is collaborative problem-solving, which we could not have imagined three months ago.
However, despite the unprecedented nature of the challenge (perhaps requiring specific, new knowledge and technical skills) the ‘big questions’ remain the same and so do the generic skills and attitudes required to respond to them successfully?
‘How do make sure this is learning environment is fair?’ ‘How do make sure this learning environment is safe (both physically and emotionally).’ ‘How do we make sure everyone feels valued?’ ‘How do we make sure everyone engages fully?’
However different the ‘new normal’ appears, if we are able to respond effectively to these ‘old’ questions, then continuity will be achieved.