Monday, 1 July 2019

Faith, hope AND love

Image result for faith hope and love free imageTalofa lava i le au maimoa, au tapua'i o le tatou galuega fai faatasi i totonu o aoga a Niu Sila!

Today I greet you from my role of 'Acting Assistant Principal' - one of three for Point England School.  2 - 3 months old.  To return to team leader of Team 5 end of term 4 2019.

This is a sharing of some of what I have been led to focus on so far in this new role.

I've met a number of professionals that belong to different organisations/agencies.  They have shared important information relating to their specialist work.  The passion and love for their work is obvious.  I've also had many opportunities in my short 3 months to observe with a different lense - the gifted and talented staff we have here at Pt England.   Our management team - wow!

This place is full of those who love our tamariki.  When exchanging or for me mostly receiving information about best ways to support individual students, I have picked up on something that I feel we add to love.  One learning so far:  The act of having faith, hope AND love in our children and whanau.

When there is faith and hope along with love we are prepared to try things again and again, try things differently, ask questions, share information in the faith and hope that things can and will be better.  It's at the heart of what we do.  We have faith and hope that what we plant today will grow and bear fruit.  For me it's been a mixture of seeing the fruit during the time I've had the students in my class and more - later in life as college students, young adults and parent life.

Faith, hope AND love.

Sunday, 3 March 2019

Lift lift, lifting reading higher (for our 'Tama').

This term my inquiry will be based upon this strand of the COL Achievement Challenge
Lift the achievement in Reading for all students, with a particular focus on boys and Māori students (both genders) years 1-13

Very clear messages were received in our most recent researchers report. We need to provide more opportunities for our students to simply read - that's right independently read. While learning experiences via activities and creative task help to embed new learning - the action of reading for a decent chunk of time is valuable too!

Core learning area (our of 3) I am inquiring into

2. The lenses I intend to use: I have highlighted 2 as I will consider these two strands when supporting learners in this inquiry. I am tempted to highlight all!
Learning Behaviour/ Managing Self/ Setting of Norms
Cultural Responsiveness

Wellbeing/ Hauora
Language Acquisition

Here is my actual inquiry along with ideas and strategies I have so far.

Inquiry Focus
Inquiry Question
Reading mileage for boys will increase when boys are coached to and regularly checked in with reading mileage in and out of school
Possible Strategies
What might work?
What can I try?
Ideas to investigate
Visit local libraries to engage with people and other resources that can support choice making around texts to read
Join online TC library, set a goal of one book a week for those who take chromebooks home.  Issue for home those who do not take chromebook
Notice home to engage whanau around increasing reading mileage for boys, have a signed system daily
Have a set group that includes girl readers who have not shifted in year

Action Plan - See Journey on Blog
What steps am I going to take to change my practice?
Mid year Reflection
End year Reflection
Work in actual lesson time to visit our school library, surf through TC online library and actual time to READ during week.   Do I need to consider furniture? Private areas for hard to focus students?
To comeTo come

Wednesday, 23 January 2019

What do you want a PES student to leave our school with? We've started!

What do you want a PES student to leave our school with?This is the question we asked ourselves in our very first team meet for 2019!
 Our meeting had us
 a. sharing holiday highlights
b.teacher reflections from end of 2018
c.goals that stem from reflection for 2019
d.what do we want our PES students leaving PES with when heading to college?

 A very productive meeting where we organised ourselves in regards to classroom operations BUT also reminded ourselves of the WHY behind what we do in Team 5. Why we have what we have...why we have all the extensions to the programme like

  • school wide values 'Kindness...better together etc'
  •  special reading groups
  •  sports teams and programmes
  •  tech@Tamaki
  • recycling and reusing
  • student leaders aspiring leaders
  • PENN
  • school korero
  • Te Reo 
  • karakia and himene
  • class treaty
  • ways of talking and listening and so much more.

 These are all part of achieving the goal of having students who possess the traits, values and characteristics stated in our hand drawn images here. Yes we even drew in our meeting this morning! Here's to 2019! Looking forward to working with our awesome Team 5 teachers!

Tuesday, 23 October 2018

Language acquisition in DMIC - how to unlock this

Here are some notes I've compiled since returning to DMIC being in PES for 6 months now. I've found that the students are confident about the talk and roles in group. However my lack of knowledge and skill in the DMIC way - group norms and talk moves etc has caused student learning to slow down where it could be soaring :(  So time to get cracking and get up to speed!

  •  Draw attention to the very language you are wanting to promote with your learners. 
  •  Think through how to 'Package' the problems you want children to solve. 
  •  What are they actually solving? 
  •  What language are you using to enable students to connect with the DMIC problems? 
  •  Modelling of DMIC tutors I notice are gentle in sound and approach. 
  •  A lot of praise and encouragement for what the students share. 
  •  Knowing where to stop AND start talking as the teacher. 
  •  How to stay in the background where I'd normally be at the front of class doing all the talking. 
  •  Status being another feature to keep in mind when giving different roles to a team. 
  •  How this can turn the most shy into the most confident. Know the system well to make best use of it

Thursday, 16 November 2017

Impact Story: Student access to their assessment data empowers student learning AND teaching!

Glad you've visited my blog to read the impact story behind my 'burst' shared during our 'Burst' session today!
What happened for the learners? 
Empowered learners in the house whoop whoop!!
The group of target learners:
BEFORE inquiry:
  • very quiet 
  • accepted anything that was presented
  • dialogue with each other and teacher minimal in small group time
  • almost no questions asked
  • focus was not on any specific part of maths learning
  • did not have access to assessment results or analysis
  • nervous about sitting tests - lack of confidence

DURING and AFTER inquiry in action:

 What evidence do I have for this? 
Please click on above links I've made to blog posts that show or describe this in action.  Also look at these latest results from our PAT tests.  I have gathered specifically data for the number strand.  (All year we had a close focus on IKAN and part on Gloss)

NS T1 = Number strategy Term 1
NS T4 = Number strategy Term 4
NK T1= Number knowledge Term 1
NK T4= Number knowledge Term 4
A - H: individual students who make up target group.   Where no bar is present this equates to have '0' correct - zero.

Average of results from Term 1 for Number Strategy in PAT test:
NS T1   NS  T4   NK T1  NK T4


**The greatest gain as a group - according to PAT test was in number strategy**  This correlates with the inquiry focus that has been on this strand.   

 What did I do to make this happen? 
There are the normal good practices of classroom teacher that are utilised to support my inquiry.  The looking closely at group work through to independent learning on sites was maintained as per normal Manaiakalani classrooms. 

Points of difference to make it happen:

  • Building a sense of trust between teacher and student, student to student.  This to build up student's sense of self-efficacy when analysis and discussion of data would start.  Student self efficacy and student achievement relate
  • Small group work included 1-2 sessions regularly to simply look at our data from IKAN's and Gloss.  Plotting our results in a graph to show comparative data was hugely motivating for the target learners.  Using colour coding - this seemed to have greater impact that just number comparisons.
  • IKAN tests no longer one screen and one run through.  Now on own device with headphones, with the chance to run through test a second time.  
  • MARKING IKAN, students marked their own test with the opportunity to circle those that were 'silly mistakes' made in the speed of the test.   
  • OPPORTUNITY was continually provided to provide evidence that did 'know' what the question was asking therefore bettering their results when they initiated the conversation and provided evidence to the teacher.
  • EXPLAIN READY, a problem with interpreting what was being asked in word problems became evident in mid-year gloss tests.  An additional practice was now to use 'Screencastify' to explain how we were solving problem.  This was analysed along side what the question was actually asking.   These discussions around interpreting the word problem and our screen cast of solution were carried out in groups for support and learning from our artefacts (screencasts).  It became very clear to students AND teacher what parts if not in whole we were misinterpreting. 

Wonderings about what next
  1. With those remaining from the target group, 6 out of 8 I need to pass onto 2018 teacher the key actions from my inquiry to ensure this acceleration continues.  
  2. More focused planning around other strand areas need to be implemented as most shift was made in the number strand.
  3. Collating data in 2018 from these target students to track further progress
  4. Creating a 'directory' for students to access once they have analysed their assessment data.   The next step AFTER they identify their strengths and weaknesses, especially a directory that supports them outside 9 - 3pm of school hours.

Thursday, 19 October 2017

Fractions to decimals: try this out!

This morning we had the privilege of observing Jo Know in action with some of our target group learners. These students are working at standard 6 in maths. This places just below the national standard in maths. Normally a very talkative group they were very quiet. A number of differences for these students
1. New teacher
2. Not in the normal class setting
3. 5 teachers watching their every step
You can see that it was a hard task for our students to relax at first and get into things. Once they did we learned so much! We could see a clear need to develop language and understanding around the focus of session. This was on converting fractions to decimals and vice versa.

Things we can try:
1. Give students the chance to try the following on their own bit of paper, reassure them it's not a matter or right and wrong. It's a matter of trying out any strategy they have.

2. Have students fold paper strip into halves, lable, the same again for quarters then eighths. This seemed straight forward to our students. However once asking to go back to identify now what 3/4 were AFTER paper was folded into eighths, this really threw them. The became indecisive. The prompt for decision making was made when made to use a scissors to quickly cut quarters with a countdown from 5. This action seemed to plant more understanding, some very nervous to decided where to cut!

Here's how it all started:
Teacher could ask the following (to check where students are at)Can you write 0.27One tenth?Three fifths?Five quarters?One tenth as a decimal?0.27 + 0.2 =?

We discovered a number of work ons and were led by Jo to the following the next steps when in class in next with target group:
** Next step going back to improper fractions
Use double number and more line for this.  3/2….the 3 is the ‘COUNT’ of how many halfs.
Lines would be:
  • Whole number line
  • ½ line
  • ¼ line
Materials, push the imaging

Where they can’t work things out...go back to materials then back to imaging

Below is an example of a number line to develop understanding of equivalent fractions and to work with in use of improper fractions.

Monday, 25 September 2017

Preparing for Term 4 - time to reflect

A neat aspect of our blog posts is the use of our labels. This I have used to reflect with in preparation for term 4. Create continues to be a focus we talk about with colleagues, we create and share whether successful or not so.

On clicking on my labels from the 'Create' area we can look at what I've tried out and discovered. It's also very helpful to ensure I start off where I left off!

CReflect - click to see related posts

Focus of most of my reflections have been on my use of language in maths.  In this section key phrases are important for me to be mindful of in my planning.    Being 'explain ready' as a teacher AND student.    This means being prepared with the activities AND language that will promote learning.  When 'Creating' - I am promoting the correct use of mathematical terms and processes to best support my learners.

CTry - click to see related posts

What I have tried is the use of students data to empower learning.  This has proven to be successful in
1. Gaining greater buy in from learners
2. Learners are empowered and feel more in control of their results and data
3. Learners are more reflective when seeing their own data
4. Students are making comparisons and conclusions for themselves around learning and goal setting

CPlan - click to see related posts

The COL staff meeting we led prompted the following thoughts for me.  Am I sharing clear enough steps in my practice here on my blog?  Are they good enough for another teacher to pick up and work from.  If the answer is yes - then my plans are useful as a COL.  Planning for me to date needs to include what key words and phrases I will promote.  What vocab will be best support learners when having to various assessments and working with maths in day to day life.

Labels to be covered more in Create are: innovate and implement.