Poetry: an authentic learning experience


Technology in the classroom: Learning redefinition

Discovering Poetry- Redefining learning using technology

While preparing this post on how I used technology, Skype and Google Drive, in a Year 8 poetry study I made  a connection with the SAMR model and how the use of technology had allowed the creation of new tasks that were previously inconceivable.  This YouTube video explains the SAMR model in 120 seconds. But also read this blog by Jonathan Brubaker to see how great learning happens without technology and at any level of technology.

My recent Year 8 poetry study, used computer technology as a support for student learning and the technology was chosen to achieve specific learning intentions. Collaboration with others became necessary for students to learn more about poetic devices and technology allowed communication and collaboration to occur. Using Skype and Google docs. gave the students the experience of personally connecting with a poet and the opportunity to generate their own questions and discussions. In this way it did redefine learning.

Zenobia Frost, our Skype poet has continued our collaboration by giving the students feedback on their poems and by suggesting  poets to discover using Google drive, email, video and blog sites that have then been added to our class site.

Following up on Zenobia’s generous offer to read the student’s poems, I sent  her  a Google doc. that the  students had collaborated on- adding their poems, photos and a question for Zenobia about their editing. By sending a Google doc the students learnt about each other’s poems. It also made the types of questions the students had clear to read and for Zenobia to respond to. Collating student work in one doc. had the added benefit of making their learning visible for me to follow up on in class.

Connecting through Skype and Google doc.s transformed learning and made learning authentic. Technology developed learning relationships across Australia, from Adelaide to Brisbane, and then the students took control to set up their own online discussion forum on the school’s  LMS, Canvas, to share their poems for peer review.


Discovering new poets: Warsan Shire

Here are a couple of the poets that Zenobia suggested. Please watch, listen and  enjoy.

Warsan Shire is a Kenyan-born British Somali poet, who was announced as the  “Young Poet Laureate for London” last year. She is just  24. Read more here . To watch her Vimeo video click the image below…

Warsan Shire Vimeo video

Women who are difficult to love

The artist and activist uses her work to document stories of journey and trauma. She curates and teaches workshops around the art of healing through narrative. Read more

This is an album of her readings. Click the image…

Warsan Shire audio

warsan versus melancholy (the seven stages of being lonely)



Listen-Dr Maya Angelou Recites Her Poem Phenomenal Woman Video

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    • Hi Bess, yes the poetry Skype was a memorable event for the students. They now refer to Zenobia Frost as the source of all poetry wisdom. ‘What would Zenobia do?’ After all, they spoke to a ‘real’ poet: not a video but live, virtual interaction. It totally engaged them and I found it very exciting too..building global connections.http://bit.ly/1mT0J3L
      Now, how do I realise more Skype possibilities? I’m investigation Flat Connections and have just finished the course on Atomic Learning on global connections. Look out for this week’s blog.

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