Sunday, 20 September 2020

Finding and Fixing: next steps to work on with my target group


These three slides have been very helpful in reinforcing the good practice of being consistent and repetitive when working with students who are often appealing to the teacher to help find and fix errors.   At first I must admit that after only a few go's I'd decide it wasn't working.
Using these prompts repeatedly, especially those found in the first two frames has been important in returning the ownership of finding what the error is on the student. I have too easily and very often given hints/clues that have not made enough difference to have these particular students developing good strategies of their own.   I can see that repeating of prompts will have students soon if not already realise the area in which they are needed to improve.  Missing middle parts of words, endings, sense making etc.

I've found to stop and work on word families, starts - middles - ends of words needs to be the norm with this particular group of readers.  The sense of urgency I have due to these students being in their final years before college, I need to yes remember but NOT have it rush me through these fundamental strategies of finding and then fixing errors in the texts these students are reading.  

Just a reminder of my target group: 1 x year 8, 3 x year 7 reading at 9.5 year level.  Very soon we will be re-testing and hopefully reporting back a lift in levels and/or reading strategies.

Thursday, 30 July 2020

Guided reading = Instructional reading

Apologies I'm not going to be explaining what this is or isn't.  Rather I hope to draw your attention the beginning of our reading PD journey @pes for 2020.

Free Images : child, reading, book, girls, education, toddler ...This was a point raised...we have different names for often the same thing in NZ around reading!  One myth we've put to rest is that my title here - are different things.  Moving forward at PES we've decided they are one in the same.  We're going with INSTRUCTIONAL READING to describe what some teachers have been practicing as guided reading.

All teachers have a target group to observe closely.
a. What are these children doing when they come across an unknown word?
b. What behaviours do you notice while they are reading?
c. What strategies do they have?
d. What do you do to help next?

These are some of the questions I will be exploring with my group of 4 students.  3 of the 4 are year 7 boys, 1 year 8 girl.  Here poses another challenge.  What texts do I select that will be appealing to 3 very active year 7 boys and a very mature year 8 girl.   Looking forward to this challenge.

So far I've noticed the following:
Student A: is nervous to try out new words, knows his limitations and does not know what to do with a new word
Student B: very confident even though says many words incorrectly, will read through any word and not stop until asked to, continues without concern for making meaning
Student C: confident reader, knows to break up word to try and sound out new word.  Will often give the words others in group are stuck with
Student D: seems confident however any word will appeal to the teacher for support. No other strategies.
All students do not practice reading from beginning of sentence or earlier/on after to make meaning of an unknown word.

I need observe more and research what to do next in terms of teaching strategies to these year 7 & 8 students who are reading at the 9 and 9.5 year level.

Thursday, 28 May 2020

Vaiaso o le gagana Samoa 2020

"Tapena sou ōso mo lau malaga" - Prepare yourself a gift for your travels. 

It is tradition for Samoan people when travelling to have organised a gift to take to families who await them.  If travelling from Samoa a boxed umu was a typical 'oso' to bring.  Other items would be material printed and designed in Samoa, Samoan Bibles, hymns books and daily devotionals. 
When travelling from New Zealand to Samoa, money, canned food, clothing and any household items are greatly appreciated by those awaiting your arrival.   Don't be surprised that when you return to NZ with only a umu box and an empty suitcase.  Samoan people are very resourceful and will make good use of practically everything you arrive with!

The gift we have today for you is that of our children singing two hymns they requested to learn and share this week.   Our guitarist John is of Tongan descent who started this whole process of learning, practising and today sharing these hymns.   What a gift to share John!

This gift will be used during the  year as our students lead karakia, mihi and himene to start each school day.

Malo lava to all students, faamalo atu foi'i iā  Mr Wright (guitar and singing coach), John lead guitarist, Kitione, John L, Valeli, Pisirina and Lepisi.  Malo lava le faasoa, malo lava le taumafai ina ia iloa e isi o le fanau ia pese tāua o le tatou atunuu.

"Tapena sou ōso mo lau malaga" - Prepare yourself a gift for your travels. 

Friday, 8 May 2020

DFI: Revision: Agenda Day 9, ONLINE Friday 8th May 2020

 Ubiquitous learning has always been a goal and dream of Manaiakalani.   This has been here all along.  The season of Covid-19 has brought about this concept more clearly for students and teachers across the world!  Teachers across the globe have had to think and deliver a lesson in the form of recorded teacher/student voices to support learning - Ubiquitous learning - all time any place!

This idea of ubiquity when we look back at our collective data over the years show when teachers are in front of students our learners show progress.  When they are away from us the learning level stops and sadly often drops back for our learners during our summer holidays.   Enter the 'Summer Learning Journey' to support ubiquitous learning.   This is where students choose to be part of the learning journey and have great support from a head teacher with helpers (often Uni students) giving daily feedback to support the learning journey.  The active student participants returned to school and showed continued progress in learning levels!  Woo hoo!

Now we prepare for the goolgle test - 3 hours whoop whoop!  I have finished and have no idea if I have passed but on with badging my blog!

Reflection I shared:
The range of backgrounds of members in our group was great to be part of.  A real life picture of what our school communities are made up of...the less experienced through to the experienced...those directly impacting whanau as coordinators/leaders through to the very young beginning teacher, mature teacher but new to the country etc.  Showing again how key this DFI course is in enabling the fundamentals of teaching and learning best way possible across schools.

DFI makes very clear how pedagogy links to the digital, the people, LCS - Manaiakalani, makes very clear the reason Manaiakalani is so important!   It enables communities of educators to get up to speed, refresh, renew and refine our practice in teaching and learning.   The whole package offered and delivered did this for me.  To be given time away from the class weekly a huge help for me...likely would not be able to do so otherwise if I had to book this time another way.   Thank you to all who enable this to happen.

Manaiakalani the journey:
Have been part of this from the beginning and to have the journey and it's details organised and presented as it has was humbling.  Humbling and so awesome to see that what was tried, kept or cast away lol - we have contributed to and is now used as a successful set of practices across NZ wow!! 
To have knowledge/practice that in the past often explained as 'The good teacher' does, NOW demystified.  This course is empowering to all who can join and the knock on will be the empowerment of the school communities they represent.  This takes away mentality of the one magic pill or one amazing teacher...DFI kits you up to be this and more! 

Thank you very much Dorothy, Gerhard and the Manaiakalani team - the Maniakalani Trust who enable this to happen!

Alo, alo, alo lou foe
Taunuu lou fa'amoemoe!
Stroke! Stroke! Stroke your paddle!
You will reach your destination!

Friday, 1 May 2020

Computational Thinking: Agenda Day 8

DFI was started to empower teachers!  We are working with highly digital children, a 9 week intensive programme for teachers.  Our journey began with our learners, Manaiakalani is passionate about empowering our whanau.  The partnership of all of us working together is most powerful!

It's NOT just a tool.   It's empowerment.  Money is empowering.  Let's be real it is.
80% of our community here in Tamaki is state owned.  Right now homes are being replaced by new housing.  This is a mixture of state owned and privately owned.

Researchers have found that where discussions are able to travel back and forth at least 5 times between individuals this will improve language for our students.  We can create this opportunity to build on discussion via their blogs.  Focusing on not only leaving a comment but to reply to them and more.  Build in that threaded conversation.

Our children at home right now are empowered because learning has been made ubiquitous.  What else is empowering our students.  Are the sites and links we providing our students supporting this empowerment?

Future of Tech
Deep dive of the big picture of future of tech with Gerhard.  The Jetsons come to mind! :). Gerhard shared a video of Boston Dynamic's Big Dog as an example of advanced technology in action.  The opportunities this opens up is impressive and exciting.  With these projects we consider the 'Why' behind these inventions.  Hanson Robotic's was amazing!!  A lot of her intelligence is from scrolling through  youtube videos.  Check out Sophia the robot on the tonight show with Jimmy Fallon.  This has prompted a whole lot of discussions around artificial intelligence.  How does it benefit society?  So many thoughts and discussions happening around this.  Creativity seen as such a human trait and now artificial intelligence showing this creative ability!!
Facial recognition is part of this too.  Gerhard lead us into an online activity where you had to decide which way a programmed car should travel with hazards on road.   Here are some images to give you an from the 'Moral Machine' online activity.  Some very tough choices to be made, who do you save and who do you hurt eek!

Kerry: Chalk'n Talk with Kerry
Year 1 - 10 to be involved in digitally fluent for online learning.   Today it's not an option it's a necessity for learning!  DFI is focused on this to have teachers empowered to lead and support our learners.  Giving students the opportunity to not only be consumers...but creators of content! 
Here is an example of progress outcomes as provided by ministry with a learner's version on the right.  Kerry has found these useful with learners to help us unpack packs of the digital curriculum.

Kerry is currently working on going through our Manaiakalani Cyber Smart Curriculum and seeing where the progress outcomes for New Digital Technologies Curriculum is present.   Kerry made a really good suggestion to look at whatever we are doing and where possible see if there is one thing more we can add into this...computational thinking outcome(s).    The basis of Digital Curriculum links so well with what Dorothy shared this morning about technology being so much more than a tool and also the links with future tech shared by Gerhard.  Kia Takatū has been put together by the ministry, it's another good way to update yourself around Digital Curriculum, provides little toolkits for teachers.  Thankful for this session to be reassured that we have already included some of this in our teaching phew! This was followed by our own explore time of Kia Takatū.

Exploring Coding:
We had 40 minutes of exploring coding.  I tried out mind craft for a bit. Then tried compute it, this is where you read and follow the written code. There's a trick at times to focus on the written code rather than the coloured dots!   A lot of fun...can be addictive!  To now check which curriculum strands and areas this does link to.

Here's my very poor attempt at scratch - I think tired brain kicked in!  Thanks Kerry for being very patient with me :).  Will need to re-visit Kerry's notes to have another go especially when our children have this working really well in the years before they get to my team.

Friday, 24 April 2020

Devices: DFI day 7. It's more than a tool!

Devices:  this day focuses on the devices our young people use and we will experience Learn Create Share using Chromebooks and iPads.

Fiona Grant has kicked of our morning with a great overview of our cyber smarts! Commenting, a special focus for success is the promotion of positive language. Don't assume it's already there for anyone. It's something us as educators need to be very aware of along with our learners. In the past the learners feedback was very limited if not absent. Now with the use of blogs students are encouraged to give feedback. Initially I noticed as an educator students were focused on the mistakes made - spelling errors etc, this was telling of what they observed of us! EEK! This act of commenting positively has brought about a real mind shift for students AND teachers!

Smart learner, footprint relationships have become the key elements of smarts with the others being more of smarts that are then linked into. This focus is intentional for the first three terms of learning year.

Part of this is the confidence in which the students use their device to achieve learning outcomes. Ubiquitous - learning is accessible at any time/place by the learners. Again if the three smarts of learner, footprint and relationships is embedded then ubiquitous learning will be successful.

Connected, when designing learning we want it to engage our learners. Using positive language to capture our students. Think about what images, text we are presenting? Does it promote positive and helpful - this needs to be our default our norm.

Hapara Teacher Dashboard: Sharing work
Some don'ts...don't ask children to share their documents with you. Do not ask them to make folders. When you do this you disempower everyone involved as you it goes against the workflow that has been set up for the learners AND teachers.
Always have children making documents in the folders they already have. This is where there are will be found by teachers and no issues of lost files 'can't find it Miss'.

Gmail: a good place to see at a glance if students have opened up your email.

One-to-one devices:
The Treaty of Waitangi was a fundamental in our decision to go one-to-one.
Partnership: our fist point of action what to partner with our families, to talk with each other about the possibility of having one-to-one devices. What it would look, sound and smell like. So many of the small but important details that make up todays kaupapa around the use of one-to-one devices in our schools.

The Chromebook Experience: normally at this stage we'd all be given chromebooks to work through this lesson. A great way to experience what our learners do. We gave a 'Digital Dig' tasks a go. This is a really good activity to re-visit every start of year to re-focus the learners on key skills/functions they will need for learning.

iPad learning journey. After a lot of testing of various tablets it was found that iPads were the best for our learners, our junior learners. 1-1 ipads are set up very intentionally in comparison to a blended learning area. Well before the school year gets on the way, the set up of the iPad is very important. They are the same in every way possible to support classroom teachers.
Kawa of care for our learners is key also at this young age, this includes the care of their stylus.
Explain Everything is an enabler of students and teachers to create learner artefacts. We had the chance to look at this programme. Gerhard made a point again to use the actual names of the tools. It makes good sense as students like us will use this foundation of tool naming to launch from when we move onto using the correct names of tools. We had another explore session to experience some of what our junior students and teachers experience.
1. Try and create in EE
2. Import pre-existing learning activities onto white board
3. Explore what learners have created on EE

SHARE: Blogger tips from Kerry was the last session today.   Kerry took us through a quick lesson on how to add a page to your blog.  It's a good idea to have an 'About me' page for your audience.  

Friday, 17 April 2020

Enabling Access- Sites. DFI Day 6

Connecting with cohort:
This was a good opportunity to check in with our Auckland cohort on how distance learning was going. Positive reports on all fronts. A key theme was the act of teachers to provide for learners regardless of how many students tune in. Schools are already communicating with whanau to work out what the needs are to get students connected online. Good thing we have hard packs and the learning channel there to support distance learning!

Connecting with Manaiakalani - Dorothy

Pedagogy and Kaupapa
Visible connected learners
Act of sharing causes connection. In this time of distance learning sharing and connection has been made through camera and mics on devices. Where cameras haven't been able to work I've found it hard to get a sense of whether children understand what I'm teaching.

Twitter is the domain that pulls from all our blogs - really simple syndication! Our students across Manaiakalani and outreaches across Aotearoa have been blogging a whole heap! Impressive stats are being collected in this time of lockdown. Our students are certainly sharing and connecting via their blogs.

In our own local blogs - specifically year 7 & 8 children have refined their sharing on blogs to grab the attention of their audience. Our age group are well into blogging and if you are not intentionally teaching/reminding students to be mindful of audience the blog can just become the old 1B5 that they 'work' in and that's it! This has been a huge plus of this lockdown time. The parts that make up connecting learning.

Maria: Visual appeal - shop window!
User experience - easy to locate ‘stuff’ (2/3 clicks)
A chance to visit sites to check for the above. A really good chance to not only visit sites but more so to reflect on how my own is set it appealing?? User experience??
High school sites are as expected very different to that of primary schools. The various levels, range of class levels etc is reflected in high school sites. Having children myself who have completed college the site I saw from Karen at Tamaki College is really helpful. To be able to go back to review the standards/expectations/example of tasks would have been a great support to my children!

Local team site sharing time!
Really appreciated this time together to simply share what we work out of daily as educators and the other hats we wear in our school community. I am impressed the wonderful range - multimodal provisions in the sites that were shared. The familiar faces of teachers doing fun things like reading a big book, notices and reminders etc. Rewindable learning is key in our sites. The familiar 'What do we do again Miss'...our sites support this well! We had the chance to hear from the site owners for couple minutes at a time then we gave feedback via a form.

Some feedback I got from sharing our Team 5 site that all teachers for year 7 & 8 have their own pages. Hope my team get to see this as it's the work of Team5@PES.
  • Awesome!!!
  • Such a well thought out site with tons of intentional planning to ensure the success of your tamariki! Responsive to current climate with limiting the links too!
  • Excellent site! Easy to follow, love the faces of teachers that match the group, has their names as well, so everyone knows where they should be. Like the visible timetable so everyone knows what's happening. Like instructions next to the slides. Great job!
  • Brilliant organisation. Lucky kids
Blogger tips with Kerry was a good reminder for me! I found my blog list had students over quite a few years still sitting there in my class blog. Needing to get onto this pronto - adding students from my class this year! You'd think I would have had this done.

A great big thanks to Dorothy, Gerhard and the great team of leaders today!
Another productive day!