Just do it – together

Allanah King  has made a lot of people smile with her collaborative project dance video. See if you can keep a straight face.

Allanah commented:

The project started out as a bit of fun – it ended up that way too. We thought we would make a collaborative video in a similar style to the Where the hell is Matt video that is wildly popular on YouTube. By having a collaborative dance video we were able to transcend cultural and language barriers as everyone loves to move and dance- it is pretty universal.

Allanah collaborated with schools across New Zealand, as well as Canada, Bangkok and the United Kingdom. She talks about her process on the Time 4 Celebration site.

Why does this kind of thing make me stop in my tracks? Allanah said that she did it for a bit of fun. She also said that it transcended cultural and language barriers since dance is universal. I think it’s a simple example of what makes us human – just getting together and enjoying each other. The fact that there are things like dance or music that we can share across cultures gives me a clue about engagement in schools. It just takes a simple thing, a happening, celebration – as long as it brings us together as a group and gives us a sense of belonging. Great things can come from this.

I like Allanah’s blog title: Life is not a race to be first finished.

It shouldn’t be. It shouldn’t be aiming for good marks in a test. It shouldn’t be focussing solely on a result. It’s about enjoying the process and sharing it with others. I love the idea of creating online learning spaces to support, connect, share and celebrate. Learning shouldn’t be a lonely road. Not a journey kept to yourself. Never an experience without good fun.

I’ve been privileged to do some collaborative teaching with Maria Toomey in her English classes at school. Maria understands this instinctively. Understands and lives this. What her students learn in class they do with a sense of being valued as part of the group. She teaches the whole person, and gives of herself in the same way. She and the boys come together to think, discuss, review, display and celebrate. She shows them the value of learning beyond academic content, and they will remember her beyond the classroom.

By the way, do yourself a favour and read some of Matt’s dancers’ comments here. You can also get a Google Earth tour of some of Matt’s favourite places around the world. I loved this.


Filed under 21st century learning, creativity, Education, film, humour, learning, teachers, teaching, Web 2.0

4 responses to “Just do it – together

  1. Well said Tania. You do realise that you’ll have Maria a bit misty eyed when she reads this, but it’s absolutely deserved. We’re lucky to have her in our school community.

    See you tomorrow.

  2. Love Maria. See you tomorrow on your special day

  3. Nice- you definitely improved on my blog post.

    “Life is not a race to be first finished,” is a bit of a mantra I say to the kids in my class as all 30 of them bolt for the doorway is a swarm to be first to be lined up outside.

    My sister passed away some years ago- she always said that she felt she had to do as much as she could with her life as she always felt it would end too soon. She made sure that life was not a race to the finish but a journey to be relished.

    Thank you for linking to our stuff. It was fun to make.



  4. Allanah, I’m still taking in what you’ve done. I’m still aiming to do more and say less. That is my plan for next year, and I’m taking a leaf out of your book, I hope.

    My father also shared your sister’s mantra, knowing that he was living on borrowed time for quite some time. He appreciated everything, coveted nothing and regretted nothing. I’d like to live like that.

    Thanks for dropping by, Allanah.

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