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The first post (cross blogged from

This sounds much nicer than "the last post" though almost as frightening - what am I doing? Starting another blog, on a different topic, on a different platform? [In case you are interested in my quilting blog, you can find it here]. Maybe I can just blame someone - Hazel :-) - for getting me into this?

My name is Monika, I have been involved in education in New Zealand for the last 16 years since emigrating here from Germany. My teaching career covers working with babies and children, through compulsory schooling and up to adulthood. I have taught in diverse areas, brain development, child development and parenting, ECE, music, visual art, ICT in face-to-face settings, I have intensively worked in pastoral care for students at risk in a distance education setting and with students with special needs and their families. My current position is Blended e-Learning (BeL) Facilitator (hence BeLchick), where I am tasked with supporting schools in the Northland Region of New Zealand in their smart use of ICT to improve learning outcomes for students, especially from Maori and Pasifika families and for students with special needs. This is 'right up my alley' - I don't seem to do 'nice', 'privileged', 'well supported'. I have got a thing for the underdog, and hopefully over 2013 in this role I will be able to make a difference.

The BeLbird blog is named for the Tui, the NZ bellbird, a beautiful and vocal bird.


Some years ago my children came home from the Ear Caravan with a sticker saying "I can hear the Tui sing". This has taken on a special meaning for me:

  • Are my ears truly open so I can hear the Tui sing?
  • Can I become as vocal as the Tui, making other people stop and listen?

Add the little BeL twist and voila - here we are!

Don't expect daily posts, but as everyone who has met me knows, once I get talking, I'm hard to stop. Let's all enjoy this ride!

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Comment by Hazel Owen on March 3, 2013 at 10:20
Wow, Monika. Thank you so much for this post, and for 'getting into this'. It's awesome to have you join, and you have so much to contribute. You have the 'voice' of a tui, and many things to explore, think about and discuss :)

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