Following on from Kara's first blog on her involvement in The Mayfield Project 2023 just before the LEA regional conference - re: Activate Generating a City of Learning, here is the follow-up just before she runs a JEDI Tools Workshop with her fellow Mayfielder Ekta Nathu, from The Ministry of Education as the LENZ Wellington End of Year Event.
See this link for more details - https://www.eventbrite.co.nz/e/lenz-wellington-end-of-year-event-jedi-tools-workshop-tickets-738674363907?utm_source=eventbrite&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=reminder_attendees_48hour_email&utm_term=eventname&ref=eemaileventremind
Better late than never!
We presented our research back in May at the 2023 Learning Environments Australasia conference in Christchurch. This was an incredible opportunity to get people thinking about JEDI and workshopping the toolkit we developed.
So – what did we actually do?
Instead of adding more to the discourse of JEDI, when so much exists already, we developed a toolkit that addresses a key issue we discovered was getting in the way of promoting true JEDI outcomes and thus became our provocation – authentic listening.
The 2023 Mayfield Project focuses on the process of engagement with all people involved in the creation and design of educational experiences. Key to ensuring both physical and educational learning environments are promoting JEDI outcomes is the importance of hearing all voices involved. (excerpt from the 2023 Mayfield Project website via LEA)
This was done through many Zoom meetings at all hours of the night and saw us split up into 4 teams to tackle each stakeholder group.
Designers of Space, Designers of Learning, Learners and Community.
Each group has a set of cards which are a mix of question cards, activity prompt cards, and observation cards.
Each card set aims to help that stakeholder in authentic engagement with those around them – be it a teacher trying to collate the voices of a classroom of learners into how they want their space to function, or an architect meeting with teachers, trying to tease out how their new learning spaces can meet all their learners needs.
My focus group was community.
One issue we wanted to address was the time and resource constraints of teachers. We didn’t want to create a tool to engage the community that would add to this and therefore not be used. So, we flipped the approach. We developed New Zealand and Australian unit plans/ modules in which students can engage with their communities as part of their learning.
This helps to explore the values, desires, and requirements of the communities that surround a learning environment.
This looks like 4 card sets; Apply, Learn, Do, and Review. The teacher can choose a selection from each set to build up the lesson plans.
The learners will be responsible for planning, conducting interviews, and presenting their findings to their own neighbourhood.
One outcome from these exercises is discovering what talents and passions exist within the community and looking at how they can be shared and passed on to enrich the learning experience – such as elders showing students how to create traditional artwork, or a local business owner sharing their knowledge and experience with economics students.
The idea is to get the students, and community members, thinking about what their environment has to offer. We hope that this tool allows schools to play a more significant role in supporting communities, establishing relationships, and becoming more sustainable, both socially and environmentally by the sharing of infrastructure and learning opportunities for all. (excerpt from the 2023 Mayfield Project website via LEA)
All the card sets can be found here: https://learningenvironments.org.au/mayfield-2023-authentic-engagement/
These are all available as printable files. There are also additional resources such as workshop plans, curriculum examples, and many more.
Where to from here...
We have developed this toolkit and begun our testing and prototyping and now we hand it over to you. It’s yours to take and experiment with, check it out and let us know your thoughts – what worked, what didn’t, what surprised you.
Also check out LEA’s socials for upcoming events/ talks about this year's Mayfield Project, including the LENZ Wellington Event on the 9th of November. Myself and Ekta (from the Ministry of Education) will be sharing about our experience this year and workshopping the toolkit with other industry professionals.