Tuesday, 30 May 2017

Creativity Embeds Learning



 Dorothy Burt led us through our staff meeting Monday May 29th. I was privileged to be part of this presentation along with other colleagues who have been using 'Creativity to embed Learning' over some years now. Sight, sound and motion were intentionally used to help students to have depth to their learning. Learning that would stick and stay! Please look through the below presentation as it covers a range of practices and beliefs we've carried out here at PES. They work! Thank you Dorothy for another inspiring session. Many good reminders of things we need to maintain and those we need to improve.

On  a personal and professional note there are some basics that classroom teachers need to put in place.   Basic structures to maintain so students have equitable access to tools that enhance and support their creativity.
1. A roster that works in rotations within class hours that has every child have access to the devices where animation, paint programs and iMovie can be accessed
2. A clear task and rubric to guide the students creation
3. A checkpoint weekly to show progress, give praise and prompts
4. An absolute doing away with the 'Creative' devices - (Apple flatscreens in our place) being used as a reward.  They are NOT - they are part of the everyday learning activities.
5. SHARE:  a showcasing of creative work on media such as PENN (School TV news network), class and individual blog, team/class viewing.
6. Feedback: Give students the chance to give feedback and reflect

Part of my teaching practice finds me role playing, singing, moving and rhyming to help my learners. This has meant my students have had the chance to reflect this in movies we've made to share our learning.    It's in these creative moments that I have witnessed first hand the embedding of their learning.  Embedding that runs deeper and wider where creativity is encouraged and expected.   Engagement high.

Monday, 15 May 2017

Using assessment data for 'Staff' and 'Students'

Professional Development with Jo Knox is a great support to my teaching and students.  AND my COL inquiry even!   This particular workshop looked at using student data to empower the learner.  A good chunk of Jo's presentation broke down steps we go through with assessments such as the IKANS.

You may recall that I have been using the IKANS as a starting point for my data sharing with students.

 I carried my action plan to highlight the strongest and weakest strand from the IKANS with my target students.   A common complaint from us all was 'too fast!'.   Jo shed light on an extended approach to using the IKANS - some of which I'm happy to say I've tried too!

In the above image you will note that FIRST you mark the IKAN, SECOND you show the students the answers.   Allowing them to identify what they think were 'silly mistakes' for themselves.   Students are then allowed to complete these questions and have them marked as correct.

This SECOND part I only carried out partially in showing the students the 'knowledge' they needed to be correct rather than letting them first scan to see what they could get right.    Also note here - we are actually extending the test time - further than the fast screen flashes they experience in test time.

Formative assessment: PAT, IKANS and GLOSS.   How do our students see these results?  Often one piece at a time.  A time I bring them together to date is when I am trying to make an OTJ for upcoming reporting season - mid year summary to prompt my next steps.   Jo suggests to use a 'Spidergraph' (slide 14 in presentation below) to show both GloSS and IKAN.   This in itself will be informative for students and surely motivate them to keep on with their learning sessions.  Empowering students by using their own data.


Next steps for my inquiry: CREATE rubric and templates that support the following:
1. Carry out the 'SECOND' step as outlined in Jo's presentation
2. Plot results out of Spidergraph
3. Implement activities that prompt reflection on data
4. Decide WITH student what our next steps are in learning in the number strand
5. Implement support this choice in follow up activities and home learning