Why should I beta-test the new NZCALNE online with Pathways Awarua and ALEC…?


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What do I get out of it?

Well… it’s a fair question.

Here are some reasons why you might wanna have a look at the new NZCALNE online as a beta-tester. A beta-tester is someone who tries out a brand new product and provides feedback.

  1. One great reason might be that you are actually enrolled anyway and you’re working on one of the first three assessment tasks. We’ll have the rest of the content up and live soon.
  2. Or perhaps you are a manager and you’re looking at professional development options for your staff. Have a look and then get back to us with questions.
  3. Another reason might be because you didn’t like the old NCALNE or Unit Standard 21204 and you want to see if we’ve been able to fix any of the issues. We are locked into the new NZQA unit standards, but we’ve also been able to deal with a lot of what we didn’t like about the old system.
  4. Perhaps you just love either Pathways Awarua or ALEC. Great, we love you too…! Go on… have a play and tell us what you think.
  5. You dislike what others are doing. There is at least one other competitor product to the NZCALNE out there. We’d love to know if ours is better. We think it is.
  6. You want to learn something new. Good for you. This content includes a bunch of new stuff as well as our current thinking on everything else. We’re biased of course, but this is the best work we’ve ever done.
  7. You just love the literacy and numeracy space. Nice one. So do we. It’s great to stay current.

Now get amongst it.

Ring Graeme on 0800-ALEC-1-2 or email assess@alec.ac.nz for more information

 

Beta testers wanted for the new NZCALNE (Voc) with ALEC and Pathways Awarua


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Greetings friends of ALEC and Pathways Awarua…!

We need some people to test the three new Collections we launched for the start of the new NZCALNE (Voc) online.

That means we need people who are happy to have a look through this new content and try it out. And hopefully, give us some feedback.

Steve Jobs never launched a perfect iPhone. And while we’ve proofed the material, we wanted to get it out into cyberspace as fast as possible.

That means there could be a few bugs. Also, if you can provide us with some feedback now, it’s likely that this will help us as we design, write, and launch Collections 4 to 7.

Do I have to be enrolled as a student to test the new NZCALNE (Voc)?

No, you don’t have to be enrolled. Of course, if you are enrolled then that would be even better. Here are the criteria:

  • As long as you’re someone with an interest in this professional development you can test the new Collections and their modules.
  • You need to register on Pathways Awarua as a new tertiary educator if you don’t already have an account.

This means that you might be:

  • A graduate of the older NCALNE or NCALE.
  • A tutor or manager who has an interest in foundation learning including literacy and numeracy.
  • Someone who is looking at this training as an option for staff.

Shortly, we’ll be looking to shift all of our existing ALEC students onto the new NZCALNE (Voc) with this new material.

What if I already know all this stuff but I don’t have the qualification?

We’ll also be launching our Portfolio+ version of the NZCALNE (Voc) which is a hybrid training and credentialing process for experienced tutors who have existing evidence.

If you’re interested in beta-testing this process then let us know as well.

How do I contact you?

Through the usual channels: assess@alec.ac.nz or call Graeme on 0800-ALEC-1-2

Adobe Illustrator Is Transforming How I Develop Teaching Materials


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I’m really slow at this, but I’m enjoying how using Adobe Illustrator is changing and improving how I go about developing teaching resources.

There’s a lot jammed on this page, but it’s also high definition. It’s designed to be printed at A3 or larger if possible.

This is everything that my students need to know about the requirements for the biggest assessment in our course. It’s also the assessment that confuses people the most often.

What this conveys (hopefully), is that the teaching component boils down to 8 activities that sit under two learning outcomes. And all of this has to be backed up with supporting evidence that they’ve done the work.

This is not something I’d use as a slide obviously. But I’m a big believer in giving out one-page handouts.

Even if it’s an enormous one page.

How To Develop Great Teaching Materials In 5 Steps


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It’s no secret that I love the process of developing new resources. That’s something that hasn’t changed over quite a few years of teaching and training.

My process for materials development has changed quite a lot of the last few years though.

I have 5 rules for myself for this process. Well, they’re more like guidelines.

  1. Solve a problem. My students tend to drive new resource creation. They just don’t know it. Most of my resource creation happens as a reaction to common problems in the learning process.
    • At the moment, many of my students are stuck on Assessment 4 in the course that I teach. In this assignment they have to collate several different kinds of evidence. I have a checklist, but I wanted to create something visual. Here’s the checklist. For my poster though, I’m only interested in the far left hand side.
      Screenshot 2015-08-25 21.56.19
  2. Start analog. I make a point of starting with my non digital tools first. I like to get the shape of the idea sketched out on the white board or in my journal. Or usually both.
    • Here’s my first draft of a poster for Assessment 4 on the white board. I started portrait and then redrew it in landscape on the left.
      WB
    • Here’s my second draft. I want people to see the different kinds of evidence they have to collect. And then make the links to their Study Guide and Assessment Guide. This time I’ve redrawn the poster in my notebook.
      Journal 2
  3. Finish digital. From the white board and journal, I move on to the digital tools. Currently, I’m learning to use Adobe Illustrator. This is a new tool for me and I’m still figuring it out.
    • Here’s a couple of printouts from early versions of the handout that I was working on.
      printouts
  4. Iterate as fast as possible. I go through many different versions before I’m happy with the final product.
    • Here’s the current version in Illustrator.
      Screenshot 2015-08-25 14.27.52
  5. Realise that it’s never finished. One of the things I realised early on in my teaching career was that my resources needed to be dynamic. The content needs to evolve, rather than remain static.
    • Here’s a screen shot of the PDF of the resource (for now anyway).
      Screenshot 2015-08-25 22.11.00

Literacy & Numeracy Jobs Wanted: Setting Up LN Job Board


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Are you looking for staff with literacy and numeracy expertise and credentials?

If you have a literacy and numeracy related job to advertise, I will post it here for free. The same thing applies if you are looking for a contractor or consulting expertise relating to adult literacy and numeracy.

At the moment, I am only interested in jobs offered, not jobs wanted.

This is an experiment… And I’m happy to give it some time and energy thanks to the responses I got the other day (check out the comment section if you’re interested).

For the present time, I’m happy to post any literacy and numeracy related positions, jobs or contract work. I will post positions for literacy and numeracy related work in New Zealand, Australia, for online or remote work, and internationally if I get them.

This includes work where the job is for someone who is a dual professional, e.g. a specialist in some content area other than numeracy and literacy, but who has the skills to embed literacy and numeracy into that content. NCALNE qualified trades trainers and vocational tutors fall into this category.

And of course, I’ll post jobs that are for literacy and numeracy specialists.

Terms and conditions are whatever I feel like at the time and I reserve the right not to publish your company’s job or position if I think it’s dodgy or breaches my sense of ethics or any other rules I make up at any later stage.

Possible ideas for job postings could include any or all of these:

  • Vocational and trade-related training at levels 1 and 2 where literacy and numeracy are embedded.
  • Workplace Literacy (WPL) and numeracy education.
  • Intensive literacy and numeracy (ILN).
  • Adult literacy and numeracy education including professional development and related employment or contract work.
  • Any other foundation learning focused training where literacy and numeracy are required or desired.
  • Any management, support, coordination, or consulting positions where the focus is on supporting tutors or trainers in any of the roles above.

How do I do I get a job posted here?

For the present time, if you want to post a job here you can leave a message in the comment section of this blog post (or any post on my blog), and we’ll work out how to exchange the info.

I’ll probably ask you for the following:

  1. An relevant image that I can upload, e.g. your company logo or branding.
  2. The text for the job advertisement.
  3. An expiry date for the post.
  4. A commitment to answer any questions that people leave on the site regarding the job.
  5. A commitment to come back and comment when or if the position is filled.

I’ll probably just post your text “as is” but I also reserve the right to edit it or make comments as well.

If you think this is useful to someone, particularly someone in management who might not regularly see my blog, please consider sharing this post with them via one of the sharing buttons below. Or just message them with the short link to this page: http://wp.me/p1JmwP-LP

If I get any traction with this I may revisit my idea for some kind of voluntary “opt in” register of LN credentialed professionals who are currently active. Thanks for the support so far.

Sign up to Pathways Awarua now…!


One of the best kept secrets in tertiary training in New Zealand is Pathways Awarua. It’s not really a secret, but up until recently, this has only been available to tutors and trainers.

From now, however, this great suite of teaching and learning tools is available to everyone. Well, to Kiwis anyway.

Check out the cool video above with Ben Mitchell (better known as TK from Shortland Street).

So, if you have older kids who need a hand with maths and reading, or you’re interested yourself, there is a fantastic resource available online here: https://pathwaysawarua.com.

The emphasis is on improving literacy and numeracy for adults including young adults. So think 16+ or use your judgement.

Content includes reading comprehension, vocabulary, maths, and most recently The Road Code.

It’s current, free (funded by the TEC) and your tax dollars. And it’s all NZ content and linked to post high school vocational training as well.

10 000 learners around the country already use it and now it’s open to anyone regardless of whether you’re in an official training course or not.

Disclaimer: I’ve written some of the content available on Pathways Awarua including the modules for the online version of the NCALNE (Voc) training and professional development.