Monday, 3 May 2021

Preliminary findings

Begin to collect evidence and data  and come to the next session ready to share your preliminary findings about the nature and extent of the student challenge i.e. using your baseline student data and evidence. 

Before reading this post I suggest you look back at a pervious post I wrote about the Catalytic Issue as I look back at progress in reading made by my target learners in their reading journey so far at Pt England School. 

As a start to understand my data I looked closely at PAT and STAR data. What I noticed was across my target learners their was very little variation when it came to over all achievement. Children in my target group had a star scale score of between 32-59 points, giving them a Stanine score of 1 or 2 against the end of year norm. 

Star Test Data

From looking closer at this Star Test data it was clear that students struggled with vocabulary which asks children to identify a synonym for a give word. Children in my target group all got less than 4/10 questions correct in this area. This poses a question around students wider word knowledge which, I now want to collect more data about. 

PAT Reading Comprehension Test Data

The PAT reading test showed similar but different result from the star with students in my target group scoring a scale score of between 2.6 and 18.1 with stanines ranging fro 2-4 with most children scoring a stanine 3. What I noticed when diving deeper into these score was that students did not have one text type they scored well on it tended to be one question for each text they got correct. From this I wonder if the vocabulary in a range of text types played a role in their comprehension? I also wonder what exposure they have had to a variety of text types. 

Running records

After doing a running record on each child in the group I found that many moved up a level more more during term 1. With one student moving up a year in term 1. From looking closely at the running records it was clear that the main error in decoding which they struggled was the topic specific language. Errors were not made on sight words or those easily decoded but tended to be on words that needed context to fully understand. For many of this group they still understood the text and were able to answer literal comprehension questions some struggled with the inferential questions. 

While there is still more data to analyse and doors to look behind the door that stands out for me from this findings is a need for vocabulary to be front and centre of my inquiry and perhaps exposure of a wider range of texts within a shared context. 

I am still working on building a more qualitative picture through the collection of student voice and more anecdotal data.  

Tuesday, 20 April 2021

Tools the Measure

 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.

The purpose of inquiry is to understand an issue in student learning and take considered and active steps to address the issue through intervention. 

As my focus in an issue on student learning in reading, I plan to use a range of reading assessments to understand the issues for student learning. 

First I will do a running record on all children in my target group. I will do this to get more qualitative data about their reading ability and comprehension. From the running records I will look closely at what is happening in the way of decoding, and comprehension. 

Second, I will look at standardised test data from STAR and PAT reading. I will look at this in comparison to their running record and note similarities and differences in achievement from one test to the next. I will also look to see if there are patterns within the group or outliers that suggest other areas of need. 

Third I will collect student voice about reading. Focusing on what they find challenging and what they enjoy about reading. This will provide some additional data to build my profile. 

Fourth: I will video my reading groups and note what I am seeing in the way or reading behaviours and  discussion behaviours. This will focus purely on what the students are doing. 

Finally: I will look back at reflection notes and note any interesting discovers I have had as a teacher this far in our learning. 


Monday, 12 April 2021

Catalytic Issue

 Explain why you judge this to be the most important and catalytic issue of learning for this group of learners this year (In chemistry, a catalytic substance is one which increases the speed of a chemical reaction. Catalysts offer an alternate pathway for a reaction to follow, with a 'lower activation energy.')  

To explain why is this a Catalytic issue for my learners I started by look at data on each of the learners in my target group range from level 15-20 a reading age of 6.5-8 years. By the end of the year children should ideally have a great age of 9 years of age. 

My target group is made up of 15 children, 7 reading at 6.5 years. 6 reading at 7 years and 2 reading at 8 years. The group has 9 girls and 6 boys. 

It is interesting to see that for many of these children shifted has been limited in their reading shift across their 3 years at school. 

Why I see this as a catalytic issue is the fact that student shift is so limited. This shows that what we have been doing as not has the deserved impact on student learning and something needs to be done differently. 

From conversations with learners about text their expression of opinions is limited. It often come in the form of a retell or something they directly noticed in the text. For example when asked what do you think about this story one learners said "It was about a bear." 

As such I believe that developing more curiosity about texts and becoming critical of what they read will making reading more meaning full and engage learners in more thinking therefore impacting their achievement in reading more generally.  

Monday, 15 March 2021

Why this challenge?

Describe how and why you have selected this challenge of student learning. Locate your inquiry in the context of patterns of student learning in Manaiakalani overall. 

It is never easy selecting only one challenge when I am thinking about inquiry. I always find myself asking what will have the most impact for my learners, my teaching and support other teachers. 

It became very clear at our sense-making presentation at the beginning of the year that there is a lot of work to be done around drawing on what we already do well in writing and capitalising on this in reading. It is also clear that my class fit the the pattern of reading data from Manaiakalani as a whole and our school data. They have not been making accelerated progress but are making small steps in the right direction. 

We chose to look at the critical thinking and creative responses as we saw from the data shared by Rebecca that while we as teacher feel this is an area we do well in it is really not at this stage. We theorised that if we put more responsibility on learners to think and create they will think more in depth about the texts they read. 


Friday, 12 March 2021

Teaching as Inquiry: What is the challenge?

Summarise the challenge of student learning you plan to focus on in this inquiry. Be as clear and specific as you can about the evidence you have about this to date.

This year I am working alongside side Angela Moala to collaboratively inquiry into the questions, How will using a variety of high interest texts and providing open tasks impact students critical thinking? 

This inquiry focuses on the achievement challenge Lift the achievement in Reading for all students, with a particular focus on boys and Māori students (both genders) years 1-13. 

I chose to continue working on this challenge as it is clear that we are not making enough shift 1.5 years or more for all learners in reading. While students seem to have developed a voice in their writing process and this has empowered them to become writers and story tellers who write often and make significant shift in their writing ability these skills are yet to transfer to reading. So from a general stand point I know we as a team of teacher still have a lot of work to do to really get children moving in this area. 

We also chose this focus as a way of responding to the though provoking presentation Rebecca Jesson's in which she encouraged us to think about the practices we had used to gain success in writing and how these could become part of your reading program. 

The main reason however is the reading levels of the learners in my class. This year in my year 4 class currently 26 out of 28 learners are reading below their chronological age. 

This paints a picture of need in reading in my class. 

Friday, 5 March 2021