Tuesday 31 July 2018

CoL Reflection on Inquiry Conversation 1

This term we have been challenge to think back to help us move forwards and to make sure that our theories and practices are clear in our minds as we move forward into term three. At our recent CoL meeting Dr. Rebecca Jesson provided some scaffolds to help us to this effectively. 

1. I have been engaging with a range of research including the resources and models from CS unpluggedliterature on vocabulary development, Our DMiC professional learning and mentoring as well as the wonderful support from Dr. Jannie van Hees. As a result my inquiry and approaches have drawn on different pieces of this research. I have tried to include the recycling of vocabulary as this was a point the Jannie explain is very important for vocabulary retention. I have done this through the use of our class mantra and using topic specific language in our problems that we unpacked through our problem launch.

2. One thing I have noticed throughout this process is that I am testing a lot of new ideas however the data I have been collecting is mostly anecdotal. As such I am not following the research based principles as closely as I have done it past projects. I believe the elements of reflecting of self and how my action have impacted is still there however my theories have changed a modified throughout the process. I still believe that the problem is a lack of topic specific vocabulary in mathematics makes it challenging for kids to attack larger problem.

My theory is that through exposure to, use of and recycling of this language in guided and independent work in multiple contexts students will develop a deeper understanding of this language increasing their ability to solve larger problems. 

3. I have learnt so much... I feel like I have been in a state on conflict in my inquiry for two terms and I have tried so much and much of it from anecdotal evidence has worked well for a number of learner. However now it is time to collect more specific evidence and look at a group over a two week period in which I am front loading language in the DMiC launch, using specific language in the problems, providing opportunities to use a recycling the language in group discussion and independent tasks. 

Friday 27 July 2018

CoL Meeting Rebecca Jessen

Rebecca Jessen- Planning and predicting: THEORY is everything.

So far we have work alongside a number of people to develop Theories.
-What language learning is going to go on in their heads.
-What is going to happen in my classroom program to make the learning happen.
-What am I going to do.

If we consider Dolphins as the model for what we are doing as Inquiry. We can only see the Dolphins (Learning) when they pop out of the water. Our theories should allow us to know where the Dolphins will pop out. But we know in reality the Dolphins always pop out not where you expect them to.

Now is the time to lift the game on what is working. It is about looking at each children and revisiting the theory in relation to each child. Why did it work better for some learners then others.

You only know if something works in a particular situation is by TRYING it out. 


Where is the mismatch between what was planned and what actually happened. What did they kids think I did. 


What it boils down to: 
1  - Figure out the students’ strengths and needs 
2 - Use the existing research base to plan something different that is likely to use strengths to meet the need
3 -DO the different thing
4-Which engages the students in a different way of learning
5-Which results in learning.

I had a great discussion with Rebecca about what I am doing how it is work and what conflicts are happening for me in my inquiry. 
-We talked about stepping it up by making the activities more focused. 
-videoing and analysing discussion
-Planning more closely at the language. 
-Providing discussion scaffolds. 
- Providing texts that support mathematical language. 
-2 Week cycles of analysis. 

I have a lot of ramp up this term and I am so excited to Ramp it up and see what We (My learners, Myself and of course you). 

Thursday 26 July 2018

Col Meeting

As we launch into the second after of the year we must again consider what makes learning, teaching, children and teachers successful in education and life.

One of the things we need to remember is that one of the Pou that holds importance is that teachers and in fact I believes students should be evaluative. They are evaluative through evaluating ourselves, our practice and success based on the success of our learners.

As we learn it is important to remember that we are influences and we must with care and love support each other as teachers and inquiries to be great teacher, because great teachers make children learn.

What do we need in Term 3?
Term three is an amazing time as we are for the most part settled as a class and the pressures from wider school activities (Fiafia, production, School wide testing).

If it is not visible it failed. We are aiming to crank up learning this term and our Manaiakalani goal of visibility  is so important. It makes it possible for all Adults involved with a children to crank up learning together supporting a bigger shift for our beautiful learners who are pushing themselves as much as we push them in there learning.

We have been talking about Language and the importance of language. Language learning is at time taught in a boring way. We need to make learning exciting.

We must also remember that importance of the language of learning and the language of success. We have a large group of children who speak G.I Cheechee because their first language is not English, Tongan etc.

As we spend more time in this community we learn the language G.I Cheechee and then when we are tired you speak it to the kids. We must remember we need to build the language of success. One way is to repeat it back to them.

The cultural history of our children no so far back there is a history of language amounts of language being produced.

We know that to accelerate students need to:
-Finish work
-Get feedback
-Have scaffolding
-Have scaffolding removed and gain independence.

So how?
This is a question I always have and I want you to consider it with me. Russell talked about connecting language to the known environment. Do our kids know the correct word for the things they involve every day. It may be that there is a problem in the community that the learners can take charge of. Twice a week is the magic number. We need to make sure we see kids twice.

Blogging Twice a week in the the summer holidays show high gains, so we need to do this in our classrooms.

Wednesday 11 July 2018

GAFE-Closing Ignites Session

Kim Sutton-Good Questions
Kim started by talking about how she was not 100% sure on what she want to share. Then she had a discussion with Jesse and this lead to her topic. She talked about all the questions that she and many other debated at university.

She then said this does not add up to the the number of questions kids ask about 437 a day. Some questions by kids are pretty common "will you play with me?" but they can be crazy like "why is hate more important then love?"

Why do you ask these questions? "Because if I don't ask question, how will I know what to change in the world. "

Questions are probably more important today then answers

Ky Staal and Lara Ferri- young entrepreneur project
These students' took us back to year 10 in which they took two weeks to follow their passions. They had to employ the teachers and get them to help them. They had to make sure their project help their community and school. 

We watched a video that explained this and showed how students took on the leadership roles in these projects. 

They shared through a fair in their school hall explaining how their projects had an impact for them, others and the wider community. 

"In order to evolve other education system we must first involve the student" This quote stood out for me. 

Michael Davidson-Lego stories
Micheal talked about how one learner changed his perception of education. He talked about how the lego in his classroom allowed a learner with very little english told his stories.

He said "innovation is a state of mind". I am not sure I agree with this. I think yes you have to have a drive and a passion and a mindset but innovation needs to much more it needs partners, time, thought, challenge, risk.

How can you watch learners and notice what they are doing and allow them to build with it.

Jay Atwood- What Gran has to say
Jay grew up in a small town with a town moto of "Where tradition meets tomorrow."

-Know what is trending
His Gran, new what was happening.
  1. Know what is trending
  2. Share what you learn
  3. Everything is hard before it is easy.
It takes a teacher to make that link from hard to easy. The role of teacher are changing.
This image is what you get when you google teacher.

But that is not reality. Don’t say “it is easy” learning is messy but what if we can get kids from the point where it is hard to where it is easy.
4. Have fun with it.

Don’t be afraid to enjoy the challenges just because it is hard doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy it.

Tuesday 10 July 2018

GAFE-Manaiakalani Google Class Onair

In this session Rebecca Spies talked about her experience as a Class OnAir teacher. I really loved the way she openly shared about this experience.

She explained that each lesson has:
-A video of the lesson
-Lesson Plan (this is an extended plan that has lots of detail to help teachers).
-Learner created content.

We watched a lovely video of the learners in her class exploring their five senses and looking at describing what they experienced using scientific language.

Class OnAir gives the kids a chance to get even more exposure and more comments which provide questions and prompts to think more.

These are the fantastic teachers who share their teaching through Class Onair

I really enjoyed this session because it gave me a change to really explore the Class OnAir videos with someone their who could explain and add to my experience. 

GAFE- Google Science Journal

Kim Sutton works for Google and works with many Educators to support them in their use of Google products. She is a teacher who has taught a range of year levels.

Todays session is on Google Science Journal. This App allows you to use a range of sensors on our phone or iPad to record experiences and understand, sound, light, distance etc.

You can use it to collect data and add notes. You can add sensors on to it you can code with it. On the Science journal you can get the code. 

This app is awesome. They are working on Google Drive integration for this awesome tool. However Kim was not sure of the timeline for this. 

There are lots of cool lessons that use the music videos from OKGO. These are are very cool and provide motivation and creative experiences for kids.

There are loads and loads of great ideas of how to use the science journal app for many different curriculum areas. You can find the resources and ideas here.

Thanks Kim I loved your session and can't wait to start using this App with my class. 

GAFE-Create A Formative Assessment System Empower by G Suite

John Meng- Works at Rooty Hill High School. He supports teachers to step up their practice. He also teaches Maths and Languages. He leads teams in these areas. 

This workshop looked at the pedagogy behind formative assessment. This will centre around his experiences.

We started by talking about our own experiences of formative assessment.
-Someone shared their use of Google forms as a way of doing formative assessment.
-Bump it up wall, students compare their work to the wall. They also get feedback throughout the process. This allowsto peer support a critique.
Image result for formative assessment

What is formative assessment: This is assessment that happens within the process of learning. 

One way of thinking about assessment is... When a chief tastes a soup, they can change it to salty, they can change it, That is formative. When a Chief serves the soup to the customer, That is summative

We see that feedback has a huge impact for learners. We need to identify the gap from what we know to what we ned to know.


Feedback alone is not enough, it has to be coupled with motivation and we want this motivations to be internal. John suggested that Doug Fisher's model is a positive model for formative assessment.

Here is the video he shared
We learn language by producing language, if we are using academic language student's should be using this language as this is home we learn it. 

He talked a lot about the use of interaction on Google slides. Powtoon could be good for instruction and modelling.

GAFE Sydney-PBL in a Google World

In this session Kimberly Hall helped us to explore project based learning and different digital tools that could be used to help with different elements of the inquiry or project based learning. 

Developing the question 

The first tool we looked at was Answer Garden. This tool is ideal for seeing prior knowledge. It is good as it has a live nature kids can contribute multiple responses however you can only write the same thing once.
Kimberly talked about the the classroom mode being the best. Make sure you turn on the spam filter and you may want to change the settings to hidden. 

We all use Google search all the time. This site Google Inside Search When we search a person, place or thing a knowledge card comes up on the right hand side which provides details about it and related things which can extend understanding.

Padlet has some great updates that you may not be aware of, you can add images, videos, voices, memos. It is not as usable as you only get three boards.

Canva is something I have used as a professional to create infographics. It can also be used to make certificates etc. Another place for creating infographics is Piktochart.

Accessibility tools

Rewordify- You can put in a lump of text and it literally rewords it. Changing the language for kids who struggle to read at that level. You can get it to highlight parts of speech. You can get it to make activities that could provide some opportunities to dive into the language. 

DotEPub-This terms a webpage into an Ebook. 

Read&write-This tool is an equaliser for for kids. It has a tool bar that does text to speech, it highlights the sentence. You can highlight text and it will read that specific section. It has highlighting tool so kids can highlight key information that they identify in their research. It will create a Google doc with the things that are highlighted text and it links back to the source.   You can simplify the content. 

This is definitely a tool that I will be exploring some more in the future. 
Thanks Kimberly for sharing. I really enjoyed these tools and believe many can be used across the curriculum. 

GAFE Presenting

Yesterday I presented two sessions on making and using Google Sites. I really enjoyed these sessions and want to thank Jackie who stepped up to help me today with my lovely friend Dani Stone being sick. 

During these session I had great attendance and met some lovely people who learnt along side me. The biggest challenge for me in these sessions way the variety of people who were all at different stages in their sites learning. It was also interesting presenting at this amazing Sydney summit as NSW has a different curriculum then us. 

Thank you to everyone who attended my session.

Here are our session resources

Monday 9 July 2018

GAFE Sydney-The Power of Possibility Part Two

Assessment with the growth mindset

We need to remember there are two types of assessment: 

Assessment FOR Learning- Here we can give feedback on the process and praise failure. 
Assessment OF Learning

We want to shift the focus from feedback for a grade to feedback to add to our learning and improve. 

The power of multiple people building on their ideas and providing feedback is amazing. The way kids give feedback is different from the way we do and can be very important for our learners. 

You can used revision history and get students to name their process. 

When and where:
You could use growth language messages in our Google forms confirmation messages. 

If we want to create a growth mindset in your classroom, we need to make it our culture. 

When we are giving feedback we often use statements, can we flip these and use questions that make our students think. 

What are we praising?
-Result (Growth) 

The problem is we have all of these fraises that actually cultivate a fixed mindset. 

This year has all been about language for me. We as a school are focusing on what language we use and the way we teach language. The words that we use in our classroom make the culture of the classroom. 

Maybe the language we start with is the word YET. 

We need to be building the language of positivity and growth in our classrooms. 

We are teachers are the chief of mindset in our classroom. 

GAFE Sydney-The Power of Possibility Part One

I am excited to be at another one of Lindsay Wesner wonderful sessions. I really enjoyed her session and Keynote at the Auckland Summit. I love her positive attitude and think it is just want I need to help get rid of my half way through the year vibe. 

So what is growth mindset: As a group we created a share understanding of what growth mindset is. 

Here is Lindsays redesigned graphic that shows these ideas beautifully:
We need to remember the power of "yet". I have not got this 'YET!'

As teachers we all design tasks. Is there something we can do to make sure the task itself is cultivating growth mindset. We talked about this and played Bingo. Here is how we went:

How do we provide multiple choices within our learning tasks. How do we provide scaffolding in a discreet why.  

We can create a multiple pathway learning journey that supports students learning. This is done using move to section based on answer. We can use choice boards to allow students to demonstrate their understanding in non-traditional ways. 

When we see the process we see the mindset. 

GAFE Sydney-Capes Not Required

I am very excited to by at the GAFE conference in Sydney. The room is buzzing as we wait for the opening Keynote. All the MIT teachers are double checking resources and excite to share their experiences with a whole new Audience. 

Our opening Keynote speaker is Jesse Lubinsky he comes to us today from New Zealand, America were he is an innovator and technology leader.

Jesse talked about how he spent his childhood growing up in Brooklyn, in an apartment and Wednesday is new comic book day. He talk about how Superheroes are relatable for children and adults. He believes that every kids is a superhero but they don't have capes. Often as we go into teaching we think about this saying:

But what if your role as teacher is not to be the hero but to bring out the hero in our learners.

So what is our role in the heroes story? We would like to say that we are the mentor but sometimes the system or us can but barriers in the way for our heroes (students) that make them feel incapable.

We should consider the habits of mind.

What can we do as educators to bring out the hero in our kids:

Encourage their passions
One students passions was encourage was Jordan, who is a foodie and she has her own food blog. Jordan's lunchbox. What gave her this change is the support she got from her teacher and many people in her school who encouraged her.

Provide Opportunities
Students can be very passionate but this does not get fostered at school and this creates a disconnect for learners and as a result they don't feel that school supports them. 

One way Jesse suggested we do this could be through 20% time or Genius Hour. 

What if? 
-What if we are missing something? What if we are not listening enough to the people who this impacts most the kids. Jesse talked about how they change their school innovation fund so that kids could directly apply for funding for projects that will support their local community. 

At lot of the projects were around supporting younger students in communities. 

Celebrate their Scars 
Daniel Kish is blind and yes he found that hard but he way lucky because he was supported people didn't over over protect him. He used this freed to learn to echolocate. Now he teaches over people how to see without seeing just like him. 

There can be enjoy in failure. The things we hold the most dear are the things we struggle to get over and over until we finally get it. This is the same for our kids.  

Honour Individuality 
All of our students have challenges. Some of these challenges are physical but others are on the inside. Jordan Reeves age 10 has only one arm. Her is her story. Hilde is a reporter, she has her own news site. She covers things in her life. She has parents who are journalist. At 9 years of age there was a murder in her block. That wasn't received well by all. Here is her news site. To Honour their individuality we must know our learners. 

So is it true what Syndrom said "When everyone is super, no one is" No I don't think so we can all be super because with great power comes great possibility

Tuesday 3 July 2018

Maths Norms and Language

One of the big language wins for me in my inquiry this year has been the establishment of a shared language of maths norms that we revisit regularly. This allows us to really unpack the language and have a shared understand that we continue to build on each day as we develop our shared maths community. 

As a class we have an understand that being an active listener means, listening to what others share and being able to ask questions or repeat what they have said in our own words.