I watched this:


and I read this: The Preschool Inside a Nursing Home

and I thought: We need to do this in South Africa right now!

Imagine the potential of combining kindergarten and old age homes in SA?

Saves on staffing if you have caregivers who can look after kids and grandparents.  The grandparents have so much wisdom and knowledge and love to offer the kids. Add technology to the mix and we have a real game changer!

Life-long learning centres

A place to start might be with life-long learning centres in areas that have the least developed facilities. A centre where people can come to get some food, get some medicine, but also just spend time together learning and playing with technology.

What needs to be done to get such a project started?

Who has the knowledge and resources to get a project like this going? Or perhaps update existing projects with technology instead of getting resources for a completely new one?

So much potential for new growth and development in SA, it really is interesting times.

a still point

“We do not learn from experience…
we learn from reflecting on experience”
John Dewey

kindle flames began out of a desire to reflect on my learning journey as I was studying and teaching. As I continued to teach, and study, and travel, my musings reflected my altering experiences. Posts about the places I’ve been, and the things I’ve seen began creeping in more and more frequently. In light of this, I created a still point as a place to contemplate my travels and curate my personal musings.
Continue reading “a still point”



The Maori word for learning, ako, does not “differentiate between those who dispense knowledge and those who acquire it. Knowledge is always a collective entity”[1]. Why do we not have a word just like this? Education is a reciprocal process in which the teacher and student embark on a quest together to find out something new about themselves, each other, the subject matter, the journey itself… Continue reading “Ako”

Study Buddies

I recently wrote the final exam for my Postgraduate Diploma in Tertiary Education, a journey that took two years across three countries (Oman, Cambodia, and South Africa).

It is with heavy sigh of relief that I would like to thank the pets that have supported me throughout my studies.

I’m going to start with Deya, who first began assisting me when I was writing my MA about Olive Schreiner (also pictur many years ago. Here she is in 2010.Deya 06 Continue reading “Study Buddies”

Technologically Illiterate is Functionally Illiterate


It really concerns (terrifies) me that particularly in a module about Instructional Techniques and Media, my fellow students (teachers themselves) are not only technologically illiterate, but resistant to technology. There have been endless complaints about the use of technology in the modules we are completing as part of the Postgraduate Diploma in Tertiary Education (PDTE) at the University of South Africa (Unisa). I cannot understand how anyone could possibly prefer an old textbook and an outdated study guide, when there are so many more options available out there. Technology has transformed the education industry.

It is not a luxury to use technology in education; it is a necessity. Continue reading “Technologically Illiterate is Functionally Illiterate”

Bloom’s Taxonomy

Bloom’s Taxonomy provides a useful framework for organising learning objectives into multiple levels of difficulty and complexity. It can be used as a tool which enables educators to consider a wide range of learning objectives, and ensure that a variety of higher and lower order thinking skills are addressed. This increases the validity of assessment procedures and focuses the learning process. Continue reading “Bloom’s Taxonomy”

Cultivating Solitude

Once upon a time there was a teacher who had worked at a school with young children for many years. One day, after break duty, she needed to gather all the Grade Rs together to take them to their sports lesson. So she went from child to child, asking “Are you in Grade R?”, “How about you, are you in Grade R?”, and saying “All Grade Rs gather around here for your lesson!” Eventually, after watching the teacher rushing around like a mother hen chasing her little chicks, one little five year old shyly offered some advice. “Teacher, if you want a simple way of knowing who is in Grade R, just look at our shirts. All the Grade Rs wear a green shirt.” The teacher was dumbfounded. How could she have missed that Grade Rs were the only ones who wore green after all these years at the school! Continue reading “Cultivating Solitude”

Backseat Driving

20150213_123030In my mind’s eye, my baby sister is six years old: rosy cheeks, curly brown hair, gentle brown eyes, and a naughty smile. Why is that always the case? In reality, she is a 25-year-old doctor completing her internship and has delivered more babies than I have ever held. And yet, to me, she is a baby. Continue reading “Backseat Driving”

Characteristics of Adult Learners

Characteristics of Adult Learners
I used Coggle to create this mind-map.

Characteristics of Developed Learners

I have a problem with Knowles’s characteristics of adult learners. I suggest that this framework should more accurately be called the characteristics of developed learners. Knowles makes five assumptions about the differences between adult and child learners. These assumptions are related to self-concept, experience, readiness to learn, motivations to learn, and the orientation of learning. I do not think that Knowles’s framework for describing adult leaners is suitable for all adult learners. Additionally, these characteristics can equally be applied to young learners. It is important to examine the context of each learner, and to take the individual learner into consideration. I will briefly outline each of Knowles’s characteristics and offer a few ideas about each point. Finally, I will conclude with my argument for how a shift in terminology from characteristics of adult learners to developed learners may benefit our teaching practice. Continue reading “Characteristics of Adult Learners”

Sir Ken Robinson: Changing Education Paradigms

This video fundamentally altered my views on education. How can we incorporate these ideas into our teaching practice?

Sometimes, teachers do not really have a say in content, assessment, or delivery of lesson material. We seem to be going along with a lot of ideas that may need to be updated.

How can we create a space for this in the formal learning environment?