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I am a 38 year old single mother to 3 young children; Conor (5), Katie (2) and Rohan (1) and am currently studying my Graduate Diploma in Teaching and Learning (Primary) at the University of Southern Queensland (USQ).
I come from a family of teachers - my mother was a teacher, my Aunt was a Primary School Principal, my cousin teaches French and German so it may be something, oddly, I was avoiding for some time!
My academic background is in Medieval & Renaissance Studies and Early English Literature (Bachelor of Arts) obtained from the University of Queensland in 2000. I have a strong interest in history and worked for many years for the Queensland Museum as a Technical Officer and Researcher.
Along with my love of history and literature I have a love of technology. One of the things that excites me when I think about teaching is how we can use new forms of technology to make content relevant to students.
Information technology has formed the basis for most of my employment as a Project Manager for the Queensland Government developing websites, information management systems and eNewsletters.
Whilst working for the Queeensland Department of Education, I created the Productive Pedagogies website (original website no longer in use), developed teacher materials, wrote many articles for Education Views and developed an eNewsletter to assist staff at head office to connect and communicate with teachers 'at the chalk face'. These were early days of the eNewsletter concept and some of these forms of communication were highly successful and others were not - it taught me a lot about how to communicate effectively with teaching staff and has provided a great background to my teaching studies having come at it from the 'other side' (policy) first.
In addition to working on the Productive Pedagogies, I also worked on the New Basics Project, designing conference materials and focus groups for teachers. I must say that this project at the start of my government career - really opened my eyes to how exciting teaching can be. Working with teachers and listening to their feedback about how to make tasks 'authentic' and 'rich' showed me a whole new world about teaching and was very exciting! Teaching was no longer a boring repetition of facts and figures - it was an exciting new world of possibilities! The seed was planted then about teaching...but I refused to delve into the 'family business' of teaching.
While working at Education Queensland I continued to work on other exciting projects, doing policy research, website development and ICT tools for teachers and statewide representatives on projects such as; Middle Years of Schooling and Education Training Reforms for the Future
After working at Education Queensland for a number of years I was offered the chance to work at the Department of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islanders (originally called DATSIP). While there I developed more IT projects with Aboriginal communities including the Meeting Challenges, Making Choices (MCMC no longer in use) website which highlighted 'Dry' places in Queensland during the early roll out of the project and many other similar projects. Working with Aboriginal policy opened my eyes to the enormous gaps we have in our educational and health policy - although there were many exciting new projects trying to address these gaps - the issues are huge and complex.
In 2004 I moved to Ireland where I worked as a Project Manager for a large retail development and brought up my first two children Conor and Katherine. I returned to live in Australia in 2008 and had my last child Rohan here. In my spare time I design cross stitch patterns for a small hobby business.
I hope this gives you a bit about my background and experiences - please feel free to email me or post a comment. Along with showing some of the things I've learnt as a student teacher I want to use this ePortfolio to connect with other educators and obtain feedback.