As part of my journey I chose to use Easttle as my primary data collection method. My reasons for this were as follows:
- I believe Eastlle is the most independently completed measure compared with Probes and reading records as this can rely on interaction with the teacher especially in regards to keeping focused and on task as well as speed.
- My goal this year was to grow learner's oral language and vocabulary understanding as my hunch is that this will increase independence and ability to take action so this method allows learners to take action independently.
Strategies I have implemented so far:
- Gifting language through printed visuals
- Intentional reciprocal reading groups where learners are practising different roles based on reading strategies (Summariser, Predictor, Inferrer, Visualiser, Connector, Questioner) so they can build their knowledge about what each of the strategies mean.
- I have changed my lessons to include more intentional teaching by providing workshops that come from the student voice as well as data collected and I have been more intentional about the activities I have created for the learners to complete when not with an adult. (See post)
Data Analysis Student 1 (Round 2):
In term 2 I got my target learners to complete an Easttle and this was after a few weeks of introducing my intentional teaching workshops. This learner in particular I have taught for a second year and they have never tested well in Easttle as they find it challenging to access this method and struggle leading their own learning.
Data Analysis Student 1 (Round 3)
Woooohoooo!!! This was a big achievement for the learner and one of those moments you remember in teaching. This was the first time this learner has registered on Easttle and although they are still below in their results it is a big shift in their ability to drive their own learning. I believe this is due to their understanding of what the questions are asking them so they can access the site better and stay engaged.
- A thought i had while writing this is to get some student voice as to why they think this has happened for them!!
Data Analysis Student 2 Round 1:
This is another learner who I found is challenging to access Easttle and said 'I do not understand what I need to do, I don't want to do it.' Connecting with Whanau and previous teachers they said this learner loved to express themselves and have an amazing rich spoken vocabulary but they did not have this in written form. Therefore comprehending questions was challenging as they looked at the task in the big picture rather than thinking about the question they are on.
Data Analysis Student 2 Round 3:
Yayyyyy!!! Such a great shift and even during the session when this learner was taking the assessment there was such a shift in their engagement and focus. This I believe is down to their understanding of vocabulary but a big part of it is due to the reciprocal reading technique where they have been practising leading their own learning and growing their voice.
- Again get learner voice to add to my data and support/challenge my hunches as to what is causing the shift.
Tips I have taken away from our Manaiakalani session to think about in future posts
- For it to be data you have to have recorded it in some way....
- Add in a copy of the app I used to take the data, so others can use it in their spaces
- What data have I included in my posts - what is the positive data that I am sharing, what is the negative, why am I sharing the data that I am?
- How will I use the data to tweak my next interventions. Do I have to change or should I increase my time doing it if it is going well?
- Just because it is common sense doesn't mean it is true....
- Reflect on the statements I am making - they may be more engages but does it result in learning? How do I prove this?
- Replicability - can someone reproduce what I have completed??
As part of my research I looked into the NZ Curriculum as I thought this would be a good place to start as it runs through schools across the country and this means it will give me insights into expectations and hopefully give me a common understanding of where teachers across New Zealand are planning from.
The 6 Reading Strategies that my tool focuses on are:
- Questioning / Clarifying
- Making Connections
From reading through the Curriculum it is clear that these elements come up across the different levels which supports the need for my tool.
Another area of my research I feel supports my tool is the Key Competencies. Within my tool learners will be developing their ability to drive their own learning by practising things such as:
- Reflecting on their goals and next steps (Managing self & Thinking )
- Collaborating with other learners and giving feedback (Relating to others)
- Choosing which activities will support their learning (Using language, symbols and texts)
- Challenge themselves to take control of their learning and work with the teacher and others in the group to develop their reading strategies within small group workshops as well as independently (Participating and contributing)
As well as the curriculum research, a big part of my tool will rely on intentional teaching where teachers will set up their lessons to have workshops with the learners. It will begin with the teacher modelling this approach where the learners will eventually be able to have conversations supported by their new vocabulary to learn with and from one another and give each other feedback.
I feel this is a big differentiation in my tool that I have not seen in other tools. Although Reciprocal Teaching is not a new approach, no other tool that i have found supports the learners with independent tasks that the learners can complete to practise the reading strategies when they are not working with an adult in the workshop.
Based on the feedback from KPMG and my further research I am excited to finish my site in the next two weeks so I have a working prototype that I can use with the learners and get feedback to continue to refine. Continuing to grow my understanding of what a shared language could look like in Reading - Is it possible? Let's see.....
I spent the last few days reflecting on my journey so far and all the twists and turns it has taken - heavily influenced by the feedback from the MIT Team. I was really excited to share my progress so far and get next steps.
This visual was for others but mainly for myself as one our mentors, Anne Sinclair, reminds me often. My brain likes to think big and I have spent this year practising refining my thinking and putting plans in place to keep myself accountable for all my different roles.
My journey so far has been constantly refining my ideas and now I have a tool that I have created that I have been getting feedback from teachers about.
The feedback from my day at KPMG was:
- Where am I getting my shared language from? Is it transferable to other schools?
- Am I going to big? Should I focus on certain areas within the reading levels and then grow it as I get a better understanding of what goes into one level?
- How do I summarise my tool in a few words as well as explaining the whole journey?
As a person who likes to think big picture I really do value this feedback as it supports with my thinking and it keeps me thinking about how I can funnel my thinking to ensure I am holding myself accountable for the outcome that is sharable with others.
My Next Steps:
- Collate all my research so far and create a blog post making links to the Curriculum Doc and other areas to make sure my tool is relatable to other teachers/schools
- Focus on Senior School Reading Levels (Purple, Gold, 8.5-9.5 and 9.5 - 10.5) and make links to the Key Competencies as critical thinking and collaboration what I feel differentiates my tool from others.
- My summary is 'My tool has a shared language that allows learners to drive their own learning and promotes intentional teaching for reading strategies.'
Watch this space....
So since attending EdTech I had so many amazing takeaways and it really did spark a lot of my adjustments to my outcome. I have almost finished a prototype that I will be trialing in week 2 of Term Three that brings together all of the different elements I have been researching in my CoL inquiry as well as exploring in my lessons. The problem I have been working on since the start of the year is:
'A number of our learners do not make National Expected Shift in Literacy'
This is the learner portal starting point. I have been keeping many things in mind from my learning as I have been going on the journey - Eg what takeaways can I take from reciprocal reading strategies that allow learners to develop ownership and agency over their learning? I have also been thinking about my Digital Fluency immersion where we were told to try to limit the site to three clicks before the learner has to take action.
A big noticing I have got from my inquiry and from our CoL meetings has been - how can we make more shift in all three areas Reading, Writing and Maths. So although I am starting with reading elements I have been building an awareness in the learners as well as myself to be connections between reading comprehension and Maths word problems. What strategies work in both?? And by colour coding the steps and intentions I intend on using this page to get the learners more aware of their strengths as well as growing their ownership over their next steps.
The final part of my reflection links again back to my DFI course where we were looking at multimodal engagement for the learners and so I have initially got tasks on the learners page where they can develop the different intentions in a way they feel suits them best - this is only a start and I hope as I implement this I will see a growth in the elements available through student voice.
BIG THOUGHT AND NEXT STEP!!!!
A big part of my site will be the teacher/adult/parent portal where I will need to create expectations and set up videos required for this site to work as it is really important to implement structures and systems to help the learners take ownership of this site. Excited to see where it goes!!!
Walking on cloud nine! As if this trip couldn't get any better - it did. We were so lucky to be taken around and explored Google HQ in Sydney as well as see the amazing sight the beautiful location has to offer with our fun, caring group!!
My biggest takeaway was that during lunch time (which was unreal) I noticed that everyone, I mean everyone was talking and engaging with each other and not one phone in sight. Honestly I think I saw maybe one or two phones on any of the tables. Why is this important I hear you ask, well I think it is so cool to see a big digital company that has staff that collaborate and talk with each other with minimal distraction from human connection. It made me reflect - How do they promote this? Is it intentional? Does it just happen as a result of the culture and intentional environments?? I am so excited to have follow up conversations to find out!!
Another inspiring problem solver and innovator - Jim Sill. If you need any tips about movie making and Film this is the site for you. It could not have come at a better time as I am preparing for the Manaiakalani Film Festival and looking into ways I can support teachers with the development of their movies.
This session had so many top tip takeaways as I was able to see what a great intro to a movie needs. Take a look at the many resources on his website to find out more!!
Introduction to a movie (robber trying to steal gems and jewels from the school):
1. Wide shot - set the scene eg have stand outside of the school and record the entrance to make it clear it is a school by including the name
2. Close up shot - show the main character eg show robber creeping around the school possibly climbing up the wall
3. Close up shot - show their face/ main characteristic of them eg show they are wearing a mask
4. Extreme Close up - show the prize/main event/problem/finish line - show what the character is trying to overcome/achieve/struggle with eg show the jewellery/ gems
Wow!! What an amazing start to the conference, it was so amazing to be able to share my journey so far and connect with other educators in a different country who are grappling with the same challenges!!
Some of the #TopTipTakeaways from this session were:
- Even when you want to help everyone else, think about how it is impacting you
- Sleep, sleep, sleep
- Have fun!
- Enjoy your time off - when you get it haha
People were also really excited about using memes in the classoom. Here is the website I used for this workshop but you can find one that suits you and use it in the classroom as a fun starter activity to build oral language and note taking!
Problem: A number of learners do not make National expected shift in Literacy
Session 1: Who am I doing it for? Catalyst
What do the learners need?
How do you know that?
Data I have already collected (Whanau voice, Manaiakalani, Stonefields, Agency Tool)
Positive, thoughtful, helpful
Catalyst Game Tracker
Reflection 1: What is the data this year showing? Progress is a completely different thing from achievement.
I need to go back to the data to get my pre data which links to the CoL where Aaron has mentioned that we need to ensure we have our pre data so that we can get information to ignite our problem.
Pre Data - Whanau engagement
Feedback on my tool….
Good thinking for two window portal as it allows my learning to be separate from the instructions. How do I make the teacher portal accessible for parents?
There is a lot of notes and vocabulary which is needed but how do we make it accessible for all learners? How can I make voice buttons? How can I get student voice?
I have created a bank which is needed but how do I allow learners to create their own banks as well? Could this link to the multimodal approach?
I need to think about Learn Create Share in my practise when creating this.
Session 2: Who is in your team?My echo chamber:
Reflection 3: Who do I need to connect with next? Who can I work with to challenge my thinking rather than support? Who is my new lense person? - Get links from last year MIT course. I need to connect with Kate de Groot to think about how we can grow the use for whanau? How do I get people linking in other schools that give secondary voice?
Session 3: Ed Tech eg Gerhard 90 minutes - how will they create as well as listening to you?Get your participants active. What are the prompts you have put in place to avoid hiccups. How am I making the session obvious?
You are presenting to people not from NZ - how do you explain what you mean in a neutral way? ‘Our day to day’ How do they structure their year groups?
Make a really good mix of the practical with the good ideas and research
Will it be do then talk about then create? What will the hook be?
Less is more on the slides - how can you make it rewindable? Remember your slides are not presenting your slides you are!
Emma and I crossed the finish line together. We were really happy that we have passed our 3 hour exam!! Here is a link to my reflections on my Blogger platform as part of the DFI course.
It was so amazing to have my first working group of the year. The best way I have found to share a message is by working with others to bring our experiences and grow together. So a part of my inquiry this year is to create a working group that will hopefully grow organically as the time goes on. I have a general layout for each session which happens every two weeks but we will go with the needs and passions of the group as well! It was so amazing to start with CBT today and I have linked the slides and resources into my workshop section on my blog: Linked here
I believe the more the know about our brain and its processes the more we are equipped for dealing with all the hats teachers are required to put on throughout one day. By understanding that people come to a conversation with their thoughts based on their experiences we can help understand different perspectives. It was so great to spend the session talking about our own experiences and I feel the more we discuss our beliefs we may feel like we are consolidating our current thinking as teachers but also and possibly more importantly growing ourselves as well.
I have retweeted Kristin Wiens so many times!! She is the guru of visuals and I love how she creates for adults and children so we can be on the same page! Check her out on Twitter!
Although we do not know what the future holds I feel we have to attempt to understand what qualities and skills will be needed/desired to be successful adults: creative, risk takers who can self regulate and adapt to a changing environment (with confidence or resilience?). - That's my thoughts anyways. Helping children to accept and understand what ‘comfortable with being uncomfortable so you are prepared for anything’ means.