Moodle Blog

Moodlefairy goes to Mahara UK 2011


This was my second Mahara conference and I enjoyed it just as much as the first! It was well organised with a lovely atmosphere – kudos to Southampton Solent and Catalyst Uk for running the show. After a 20 minute “trek” from my hotel (timing courtesy of @gideonwilliams and @samwisemoss ) I arrived around 9 am at the same time as the LUNS team who had presented the day before at the Developer’s conference and who were part sponsors of the Conference. After struggling with the wifi for some time, I was grateful to Synergy Learning‘s Jonny McAlister who kindly pointed out the password was on my badge 🙂

The keynote was of particular interest to me as it was by Mark Osborne from Albany Senior High New Zealand – their equivalent, I suppose, of our VI form college- and he showed us  how Mahara is used not only by students but also staff for their CPD recording (something I would love to try with staff at my school.) Mark’s keynote, alongside that of  Catalyst IT Europe’s David Drummond on what’s new in 1.4 can be accessed here

The breakout sessions were in two rooms, and I have to compliment the organisers for choosing a venue where everything  -food – main hall,  breakout rooms -and toilets! -were in easy reach of each other, making movement around them smooth and convenient. I watched as Kristina DC  Hoeppner presented virtually on what started as “15 ways to get involved with Mahara” but actually ended up slightly more – with a 3/4 a bit like Harry Potter’s Railway platform! You can see the recording here.

I presented on behalf of Mark Greenwood, Assistant Head at Our Lady’s High Preston. He was unable to attend, but has been instrumental in driving forward Mahara use  with all our pupils from ages 11 to 15  both pastorally and for GCSE coursework. (Thanks to Meredith Henson for the lovely intro, by the way.) The presentation focused on using Mahara for recording success in younger pupils and you can read all about it here, in a blog post on our training centre site. As my area currently with Mahara is secondary school based, it is good to come out to conferences and see how it’s used in other sectors and particularly in non-traditional education sectors. I had been surprised last year that there were so few school teachers present – the same this year, although it was less of a surprise, so it was nice to be able to return and give an insight into school use.

However… I  also enjoyed  hearing Daniel Clark and Steve Bailey talk about Mahara at the University of Kent  “If you build it, they will come” and in the afternoon, Canada’s Don Presant talk about Community Based Learning on Mahara. As my area currently with Mahara is secondary school based, it is good to come out to conferences and see how it’s used in other sectors and particularly in non-traditional education sectors.  You can see their presentations on the Mahara UK conference site along with the others. Finally, although I am not a technical person, it was fascinating to hear LUNS’ Andrew Nicols talk about Building Mahara for multiple institutions – food for thought for several in the audience and appreciated by me as my school was one of those in that “large scale” Lancs/Cumbria  implementation he was talking about. Sadly I had to rush to the train and so missed the final sessions but only after saying a pleasant “au revoir” to Mahara translator, reviewer, contributor and all round nice guy Dominique Alain Jan. Roll on #maharauk12 – apparently somewhat nearer my home, so I hear….

Dieser Beitrag wurde am Friday, 24. June 2011 um 18:53 Uhr veröffentlicht und wurde unter der Kategorie Moodle abgelegt. Du kannst die Kommentare zu diesen Eintrag durch den RSS-Feed verfolgen. Du hast die Möglichkeit einen Kommentar zu hinterlassen, oder einen Trackback von deinem Weblog zu senden.

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