Teachers teaching teachers – are we there yet?

Accrediting Teachers on The Makewaves Fife Area

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This week I am accrediting six of our teachers and one student to support other teachers on Makewaves in the Fife area.

I hope this will be the beginning of a new way to support thousands of teachers from across the Makewaves community. However, I realise we’re not inventing the wheel here.

Teachers have been supporting teachers from other schools in their communities since the beginning of time, and teachers have been hand picked by companies such as Microsoft to share their experiences with the world for many years. Likewise on Makewaves, teachers from our Champion Schools have been supporting other teachers across the country.

Are we there yet? The first time my children said "Are we there yet?" during a long journey, it really took me by surprise. How did they decide to use that age-old saying without anyone putting it in front of them? The answer, now I’m writing it, seems so simple; because it makes sense.

Every day at Makewaves we aim to support as many teachers as possible to use the Makewaves platform and its tools to bring about the best learning outcomes for students. We see that mainstream teachers who want to use safe social tools, in a supported way, can have a widespread impact on learning. They can effect real change.

Promoting the role of teachers

Students play a leading role at Makewaves. They can come in for work experience, manage their school’s Makewaves site via the Senior Reporter function, earn Digital and Open Badges, and of course manage their own Makewaves profile.

But the time has come to look at how we promote the role of teachers within the Makewaves community. Okay, so we have popped a student into the first round of accredited teachers. But the ultimate destination remains the same – help support every teacher who wants to use Makewaves, to use it.

This starts tomorrow with six teachers and one student, supported to deliver twilight sessions in their local schools. A model close to our aims of being open, aligned with the real world and supported. Tomorrow is the beginning of a group that we hope will lead the way for thousands of teachers on Makewaves across the globe.

In the future we expect to see teacher pages becoming another important element within the Makewaves community.

The growth of a network

Our Fife network of 156 schools on Makewaves was developing as I was expecting my first child. Heading off on maternity leave that first time felt like handing over a baby - the network that was just forming in Fife. Our Head of Community has recently moved out to Australia from Fife, and it feels like she has handed back a grown, full-of-life teenager that is ready to go it alone.
I’m looking forward to heading back to Fife on that beautiful train ride from Leeds tomorrow to see what the journey holds.

S.Ashley 19/02/13
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