Anatomy of an iCentre


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Keynote presentation by Lyn Hay, School of Information Studies, Charles Sturt University

Treasure Mountain Research Retreat #19 ‘The Learner in the Learning Commons’

November 13-14, 2013, Hartford, Connecticut, USA

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Anatomy of an iCentre

  1. 1. Anatomy of an iCentre Lyn Hay Charles Sturt University Treasure Mountain Research Retreat #19 ‘The Learner in the Learning Commons’ November 13-14, 2013, Hartford, Connecticut
  2. 2. Building a sustainable future for school libraries  examination of issues, concerns and potentials of school library futures  need to build capacity for a sustainable future where school libraries become key learning centres of information, inquiry, innovation, immersion and instructional excellence (Hay, 2010a; 2010b; Hay & Todd, 2010)
  3. 3. iCentre  information-technology-learning hub  high-end multimedia production facility  technology engine of a networked school + learning innovation engine  large, flexible learning space based on fluid design principles  layout will look different on a daily basis the form it takes reflects the function
  4. 4. iCentre  technical-admin aspects of technology are secondary to learning agenda  information, technology, curriculum & elearning staff are ‘blended’  convergence allows strategic conversations “I see an iCentre as an opportunity for collaboration...not only for students, but for the power -leaders (silo managers) to work together.”
  5. 5. “Imagine an activity and we will make a space for it” High School TL (Hay & Todd 2010, 2A.5)
  6. 6. Do you want  pedagogy to fuse the work of information, technology & learning specialists across the curriculum?  key information, technology & learning leaders within a school combine to consolidate their efforts?  strengthen the connection between home and school, and harness mobile connectivity? iCentre @ Broulee Primary School
  7. 7. Do you want  to build capacity in your staff to use digital technologies to differentiate learning? A differentiated curriculum offers a variety of entry points for students who differ in abilities, knowledge and skills... teachers offer different approaches to what students learn (content), how students learn (process) and how students demonstrate what they have learned (product).
  8. 8. Do you want  to support teachers in effectively leading learning using 1:1 computing or BYOD?  to provide timely, responsive information, technological & technical support to staff & students?  to support the development of personal learning environments?
  9. 9. Do you want  assist teachers in effectively resourcing the new curriculum  assist students in developing their personal technology toolkit critical & creative inquiry  open classrooms to curiosity & imagination inquiry initiative & entrepreneurship  design learning for connectedness & networking making agility & adaptability inventing & making
  10. 10. Form Function Brand Chiara iCentre: more than just a library Maureen Twomey, iCentre Coordinator, Assisi Catholic College, Upper Coomera, QLD PLC’s 1 degree bar. Permission to use photo by Gary Green
  11. 11. iCentre is more than a label  iCentre requires a re-engineering of ‘what we do’ – it’s more than libraries & labs  iCentre brand = a dynamic, responsive, fluid ‘instructional zone’ within & beyond the school  a learning centre of information, inquiry, innovation, immersion & instructional intervention  supports connectivity & collaboration, critical engagement & creativity, construction & consolidation “The iCentre brand provides powerful vision, concepts and terminology to take to stakeholders”
  12. 12. iCentre includes  a qualified team of information, technology and learning experts  strategic and operational functionality driven by an integrated team approach  provides programs and services to support 21st century learners  relevant, flexible, 24/7, customised services in school, at home, ‘learning on the run’  pedagogy is central to all decision-making, policy and practice  customised support for students, teachers, administrators, parents
  13. 13. iCentre team  resources the curriculum which reflects multi-format nature of our world  supports inquiry learning, immersive learning experiences , knowledge construction  works with teachers to design curriculum units that reconcile multiple literacies  supports transfer and consolidation of literacies across the curriculum  supports teachers to take risks as learning and technology innovators  provides ‘nuts & bolts’ technical support
  14. 14. iCentre team  provides learning design to support change in pedagogical practice  leads in the development, implementation & evaluation of a cross-curricula digital citizenship program  provides information leadership in terms of informed policy development that supports technology access and instruction, rather than a ‘banning before thinking’ approach  manages the school’s research program through evidence-based practice, action research, datadriven policy, sustainability
  15. 15. Lessons learned
  16. 16. Partnerships, not buildings  library staff find ICT staff in the same facility very convenient  library and ICT staff begin to upskill each other in their respective areas  this has empowered both roles to work more efficiently and effectively  conversations and partnerships develop to the point where ICT and library services start to blend – synergistic teaming “The great benefit to teachers and students is that the iCentre has now become a one -shop shop for all their information, technology and learning needs”
  17. 17. People, not profiles  targeted projects bring people & expertise together: digital textbooks, ebooks/audio books, learning management system, iDevices, BYOB (teaching/learning in the cloud)  professional learning programs for teachers, e.g., Techie Brekky, Quick Shot, Coaching Clinics  students as digital learning mentors “Having the technical and library teams working together on these projects provided really good fuel to bring us together and quite happily accept the concept of becoming an iCentre team” “I observed a comfortable blending of roles”
  18. 18. By design vs by accident “I was in a school that had not developed silos because it was a new school. I have worked in a very traditional school ... where to change something is like turning the Titanic. But here I was in this magic place where there were no established traditions, no established culture. Watching something happen with IT and library, and then reading an article that confirmed what I was observing and gave me the ability to articulate that in a very professional way to my principal. Wow!”
  19. 19. By design vs by accident  One principal asked for Curriculum Coordinator to be accommodated in the iCentre due to lack of staffroom accommodation, “and it was like. This is an interesting accident!”  “We are on a learning journey with regard to pedagogy and technology, but this building has given us many more options to explore…”
  20. 20. Principal needs to support the principle of an iCentre “You used the term ‘brave’, school need to be brave to converge of facilities, technologies, people and resources, to develop an iCentre. Our principal was brave!” Fortnightly formal meeting with all library, ICT and curriculum leadership with the school principal. “She could see the positives that were coming out of the blending of staff... So then it was the principal who began to expect and demand that we work as a team, and set up the culture in the school that the iCentre was where it was all going to happen.”
  21. 21. Digital normalisation is “when the digital technology that is already used naturally 24/7/365 outside the school walls is also used in all facets of the school’s operations” (Lee, 2013) The Taxonomy identifies 24 areas within the schools where there is clear evidence of ongoing evolution, covering the likes of the school’s educational vision, the operational mindset, the leadership of the principal, the empowerment of staff and students, pedagogy, home–school collaboration, technology support and school resourcing. Go to
  22. 22. iCentre as a sign of digital normalisation “You’ll have noted that as schools move along the evolutionary continuum they become ever more integrated and the silo functions disappear. Tellingly, a number of the pathfinder schools interviewed had adopted the iCentre approach advocated by Hay (2012) and in all those situations that iCentre was playing both a lead and integral role in the school’s evolution. That model clearly fitted those schools’ situation.” What one can safely say is that the way forward in ever more integrated school ecologies, that are virtually daily undergoing some kind of transformation, is to ensure the ‘libraries’ evolution is integral to the school’s holistic development.” (Lee, 2013)
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  24. 24. Anatomy of an iCentre Lyn Hay Charles Sturt University Treasure Mountain Research Retreat #19 ‘The Learner in the Learning Commons’ November 13-14, 2013, Hartford, Connecticut