As part of our last KPMG day, it was so great to have time to reflect on my journey and record my presentation from the Wananga last month.
If you would like to just listen to certain points, here are the topics I discuss at different times as well as links to the related blog posts:
Aim of Tool: 23seconds
Aim of the project: 30seconds
Shared Language: 1minute
Early thinking: 1minute 30 seconds
Reciprocal Reading & Teaching: 2minutes
Challenges I faced: 2minute 30 seconds
Quantitative Data: 3minutes
Qualitative Data: 3minutes 40 seconds
Trialling outside my class: 4minutes 10 seconds
Process behind the tool #1: 4minutes 45 seconds
Grow my voice Blog: 5minutes 10seconds
Process behind the tool #2: 5minutes 40seconds
Introduction to the Tool: 7minutes 15seconds
Slides from the Wananga:
In this recording you can see all the different ups and downs of the year. Here are some of my reflections to add to the recording.
Taking a step back and empathising with the problem has been my favourite part of the journey. I started the journey always ‘fixing’ a problem but my biggest growth has been around stopping, talking, collaborating and truly understanding what is possible broadens the outcome. Being a learner - taking risks, challenging ourselves, growing in confidence. Has allowed me to empathise with my own learners and understand how they might respond to challenges.
It has been so amazing to be part of this journey and see the impact that my interventions have been having on my learners outcomes.
As I mentioned in my previous posts, a big shift I have seen is in my learners being able to access Easttle tests. I believe this has been a great insight into the learners ability to drive their own learning and independently answer questions. These photos showcase this, as and example of a learner who has found it challenging to interact with the test, we did a test for their end of year OTJ and it is the first time they have recorded as 'AT' on an online test.
As a teacher there are moments that stand out and this is one of them. Another golden nugget has been a learner who has been working on using the reciprocal teaching resources to extend their vocabulary and comprehension which has transferred into their writing. They have been 'Well Below' for the past 5 years and he has now moved to 'Below' with 'At' features in their most recent independent assessment. This showcases amazing shift that has not happened in recent years.
#12 Explain the reflections and tweaks you have made along the way and the reasons why you made these changes. Share your evidence for these decisions.
After my amazing trip to Singapore where I got to revisit the design thinking process from the start of the Innovative Teacher project. I keep coming back to how is my tool different from other elements out there so that I can make sure I am pushing the boundaries. I want to ensure that I am understanding my user and why I believe my tool is needed to increase shift in Literacy as well as allowing learners to drive their own learning. I feel my tool is doing just that for many reasons:
- Sites such as Get Epic is a great resource where learners can access different books. However, I have not found any sites that empower learners with scaffolded tips to read and reflect so they can share their reading with others.
- Reciprocal teaching has been a big part of my journey and I feel there are lots of sites that support teachers in creating activities to intentionally teach but I think my tool takes it a step further by having a bank of preloaded activities that the learners can practise and drive their own learning by choosing from the multimodal options on the website.
Excited to continue to consolidate these ideas for the rest of the term as well as starting in the new term - partnering up with Miss Clarke and her junior learners.
#11 Describe the evidence you have so far about the effects of your changed practices/intervention on desired learner outcomes and how you summarised and recorded these:
The learners love it!! Wow I was so proud of how engaged the learners were when using the blog. They had the ability to drive their own learning and make choices of the books their were going to read and the biggest noticing I had while the learners were recording their stories was that it was working towards the "threefer" that I have mentioned in previous posts. The learners had to focus on elements of reading as well as elements of writing while uploading this blog post.
One of my next big steps that I will be bringing in will be genres of stories. This I feel is a very easy transition to the task. The learners were also able to reflect on the story as well as their own role as the reader. How could they make it more engaging for their listeners? Was the text visible and clear for the audience to read along with them?
The learner's feedback said they really enjoyed it but there was a lot to do in this blog post so instead of it being a reflection part at the end of the session it is almost two separate sessions. This feedback from the learners has got me thinking about sequential elements to my tool that make up a whole week of learning. For example:
1. Intentional teacher workshop learning about the different reading strategies
2. Working on the activities on the website to practise the reading strategies
3. Recording your book to upload to the blog
4. Writing the blog post including reading strategies, feedback and book genres
I really do feel like this year has been a bit of a whirlwind and like Anne always tells me - try to funnel my vision (which I find very tricky). Term 3 has been a great term where I feel like I have got a lot of traction with my tool as well as feedback from learners and teachers. I really do see it all coming together now.
#10 Share data/info that you have collected/recorded about the implementation of your changed practices or intervention (what evidence do you have about what you did differently?)
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??
#9 Identify informal & formal ways you are monitoring the effects of your changed practices/intervention on learner outcomes. Explain the reflections and tweaks you are making along the way
I have been allowing the learners to be a part of my journey right from the beginning and it great seeing their interest in the website grow the more it develops and as we know many of our learners are more than happy to give honest feedback about what we do - especially things we might not be doing so great :) So I feel their feedback has had a great impact on my website to date.
The learners said they think it is good to have activities that teachers have created but they wanted to be involved in the creating process as well so over the last few sessions they have been creating games for other learners to use. This has been a great part of the process promotes a lot of critical thinking and collaboration.
So this brings me to my next steps which I intend to work on this week so I can keep to my goal of having a first draft fully functioning site ready for Week 7.
- Create a space where all learners can contribute to the website eg padlet to upload games/activities/contributions
- Create a blog and connect it to the website that allows the learners to record their favourite books I believe this is an important independent activity as it promotes; reading mileage, collaboration, understanding of reading genres
- Organising the learner's activities and Teacher modelling books into the different reading strategies as well as reading levels so that I can add them to the website
#9 Identify informal & formal ways you are monitoring the effects of your changed practices/intervention on learner outcomes. Explain the reflections and tweaks you are making along the way
Since our last KPMG day it has been so great to take some of the feedback and think about how I can get more student voice into my inquiry. One of next steps was to synthesis my project in a tweet length summary so here is goes - my tool:
Develops oral language that promotes critical thinking about current reading strategies and next steps. There are two elements - independent activities and intentional Teacher Led workshops, both work together to grow a shared language that fosters communication and collaboration
Recently I have been working on the Teacher Led workshops element of the website. In the picture above you can see me leading a workshop that get the learners to grow their voice and practice their roles.
These roles have come from my research into the reciprocal reading strategies and looking at John Hattie's research into reciprocal teaching. I believe my tool will take this a step further as the website will have many activities that allow the learners to independently drive their own learning when not in a workshop.
Successes from the trial:
- Learners really enjoyed the roles and having their own character
- By the end of the 1st session they understood their roles and some of the learners who were reluctant to speak in front of the group found the cards helpful to grow their voice
- The learners could see how this linked to their progressions and at the start of the session they did not have vocabulary to say what each reading strategy was used for but at the end of the session they could justify.
Next steps from the trial:
- Even though the learners could say what each strategy was I feel it was very surface so instead of giving each person a different role I am going to give each person the same role so we can focus on understanding what each role needs together
- Have the starter/ independent activities support the reading strategy we are focusing on. For example as a whole group we were looking at Thick and Thin questions so that when they were working independently they could use these in their work. I could have used this opportunity to focus on The Puzzler to practise questioning in the teacher led workshop.
Really looking forward to continue to refine my tool!! Watch this space.....
#8 Describe your process for developing hypotheses (what you read, who you talked with). Explain the hypotheses about teaching that you decided were MOST worth testing, and why.
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.....
#7 Develop a set of hypotheses about patterns in your teaching that could be changed to more effectively address the student learning focus.
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....
#4. Describe the tools/measures/approaches you plan to use to get a more detailed and accurate profile of students’ learning in relation to that challenge. Justify why you chose these approaches and tools.
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!!!
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.