Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Reflection on School Goal 2

Goal 2 Literacy and Numeracy

That 80% of Year 9 & 10 students are reading at or above the expected Curriculum Level.
That 70% of Year 9 & 10 students are writing at or above the expected Curriculum Level.
That 70% of Year 9 & 10 students are achieving in Mathematics at or above the expected Curriculum Level.

That 90% of Year 11 students will achieve NCEA Literacy.
That 80% of Year 11 students will achieve NCEA Numeracy.

So far this year, I have been using a lot of SOLO Taxonomy structured work for both junior and senior classes. I feel that this supports the students with slowly increasing the level of complexity of their writing and analysis.

Examples : - 

I have also been focussing on literacy strategies as part of my inquiry for the CoL.

This has also been my focus for my Manaiakalani Class OnAir work this year.

Monday, May 21, 2018

Description Burgers

I have been doing product analysis exercises with my Year 11 students all together on the board. What I want to move on to is using sentences rather than stand alone words and comments. We have been reading the exemplars from the NZQA website about the standard we are working on so the students have more of an idea about what the expectations are.
I have been putting together lots of useable worksheets and activities about using SOLO Taxonomy for a while now so I thought I would adapt one of those to use.

I have a blank description burger on a Google Drawing that I thought we could adapt and use for product descriptions. I adapted this burger drawing from one that is in The Writing Book.
I used this to make an example to show the students and take them through the process.

After talking to Cheryl (the school's specialist classroom teacher) about my plan and showing her my initial scribbles on paper,  she gave me some great links and ideas that I could include.
One of these was this document, the Q-matrix, with focus questions.

I used this to help me put together this support document for the students, where they could take questions from here to help them when doing their own burgers.

I put all of this support material into the class Google Plus Community so it was easily accessible. I also supplied 3 simple images that they could choose from for their descriptions if they had trouble deciding on one for themselves. As usual, too much time was spent on this decision than the important parts of the task!
Today was a single period, so the students have not quite completed their burgers. When I see them next, they will finish them off then make short videos on the class iPads, explaining their burger so they are verbalising their analysis and descriptions as well as typing them.

Here is a video of the start of the lesson where I was going through my example.

Here is a short clip of the students getting underway with this exercise.

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Manaiakalani Class OnAir Lesson 4 - Reading NZQA Exemplars

Link to Manaiakalani Class OnAir to see the whole team.

Direct Instruction 

The direct instruction was split into sections on two different lessons. We looked at the NZQA exemplars for the standard we are working on at the moment.

In this session, we read the exemplars for AS91067 all together and compared what the writing for Not Achieved through to Excellence looks like.

In this session, the instructions are about highlighting the texts to show where sections are.
Describing words, reasons why and decisions and links to the architect's work.
Here, the students are brought back together again to talk about looking for where information is shown together in the text rather than in individual pieces.
This video shows some of the ongoing lesson with the students talking about what they were finding in the texts they were reading through.

Lesson Topic :- Reading the NZQA Exemplars
Year Group :-  Year 11
Learning Outcome
To be able to read through one of the exemplars from the NZQA website and pull out ad understand some of the key information.

Success Criteria
Using SOLO

Extended abstract
Students can IDENTIFY the describing words in the exemplars.
Students can DESCRIBE how the achievement levels are different to each other.
Students can EXPLAIN how the achievement levels increase in complexity.
They can ANALYSE the design reasons given in the examples.
Students REFLECT on how the written examples show the links to the work of the architect and EVALUATE how this influence is shown in the drawings.

Links with the New Zealand Curriculum

NCEA Level 1 - Curriculum Level 6

Outcome development and evaluation

Critically analyse their own and others’ outcomes to inform the development of ideas for feasible outcomes. Undertake ongoing experimentation and functional modelling, taking account of stakeholder feedback and trialling in the physical and social environments. Use the information gained to select, justify, and develop a final outcome. Evaluate this outcome’s fitness for purpose against the brief and justify the evaluation, using feedback from stakeholders.

  • Thinking - looking for differences in the achievement levels of the examples. Understanding and looking for examples of description words, reasons and architect links.
  • Using language, symbols, and texts - reading examples from NZQA
  • Managing self - listening when the teacher is reading to the whole class and working in a small team in a constructive way.
  • Participating and contributing - giving feedback as a whole class and in small groups.
  • Relating to others - listening to the opinions of others in the class and their groups.
Prior knowledge
The students have made a start designing their own seating designs based on the work of the architect of their choice.
They have a lot of information about their chosen architect from the previous standard.
Lesson Sequence

Session Outline
Students will be first reading through exemplars from the NZQA website and then picking out key elements from them.
Student Activity
Teacher Activity
  • Sit round the front table all together with own paper copy of exemplars. Read through them while listening to the teacher read them outloud.
  • Read the exemplars through with the whole class.
  • Encourage feedback from the students about the differences they see in the writing of the different levels of achievement.
  • Roam as they work in their small groups.
  • Encourage and question to stimulate conversation about what they are highlighting.

  • Use highlighter pens to focus on describing words used in the exemplars.
  • Look for reasons why decisions were made in the design work.
  • Look for and highlight any links to influence to the architect’s work.
    • Share ideas as a whole class about the differences they see in the levels of achievement in the exemplars.
    • Work together in small teams and discuss what to highlight on the examples.
    Targeted exemplars in a folder in Google Drive - print these out, one for each student.
    Highlighter pens
    Next Steps
    Next Lesson
    We will be continuing with our own design work over the next couple of lessons.
    Further in this project
    We will be using what we have learned from the exemplars to write notes with our own work. We will then read each other’s work in the same way that we have read the online exemplars.
    Reflection and Analysis

    What went well.

    Lesson Content :- Having the exemplars prepared and printed worked well and really got the students to focus on them

    Lesson Pacing :- I think splitting the tasks between two lessons was a good idea as it meant not spending too much of one single lesson doing this and the students were more focussed in the shorter sessions.

    Lesson Delivery :- I have not read to my class before so this was a totally new thing for me. I enjoyed it more than I thought. This was helped by the nice reaction of the class.

    What still needs work.

    Student Understanding :- The were not always clear about when they were reading reasons why design decisions were made. This is definitely something I need to spend more time with them on.

    Student Outcomes :- There was not as much talking between the students as I wanted to happen during the highlighting exercise. Hopefully when we do more of this and with our own work, there will be more talk.

    Other Comments.

    Having the exemplars printed out from the whole project made it easier to focus in on particular designs. Typing them out for the students also helped as they did not have to try and read the handwriting on the examples. This made it much easier for them to compare the achievement levels.

    Wednesday, May 16, 2018

    Planning for Teaching and Learning

    At the moment, the principal and other members of the senior management team are meeting with all of the Heads of Department to keep a constant overview on how things are going across all of the departments in terms of student achievement.
    As a result of this, the Technology Department was complimented today on our pedagogy tables. When I asked the principal which tables she was referencing, it was the work in the Department Portfolio that we did as the beginning of the year.

    This is my section that I filled in about DVC. I have copied this from the department portfolio and I have not linked to everyone's sections as that is their own work.

    The review section is normally done at the end of the year, but I thought seeing as it had been highlighted, I would see where i am up to at this point of the year.

    1b. Planning for Teaching and Learning

    Teaching and Learning Strategies : The Keys – Effective Pedagogy

    Design & Visual Communication (DVC) - Graphics : Ferguson

    Click image to link to document

    Tuesday, May 15, 2018

    Culturally Responsive and Relational Pedagogy - Session 2

    Reading - The Writing Book

    I have just started working through my copy of The Writing Book, by Sheena Cameron and Louise Dempsey.

    I am in one of the first sections of the book where they are breaking down a modelled approach to writing. They are balancing the level of teacher support and structure to the level of independent student writing.

    It is split into what the teacher does, what the teacher does with the whole class and smaller groups then what the students do by themselves.

    Modelled writing

    They are keen that you plan what you are going to say here, which I don't think will match with how I do things. I am more of a "wing it at the time", kind of presenter on the day ( but I am organised with what I present about !! ). What I liked though, was the planning to make sure you are covering the criteria of the specific task.

    Also, they are wanting you to let the students know what the criteria are that the piece of writing is aimed towards.

    My questions on my pink sticky note - when we I do the product analysis activities all together with my Year 11 class, should I have one completed (about a different product) to show them before we start so they know what we are aiming for. I do this when I an doing drawing activities - I always do the activity first and have these examples that I have done to show them before we start. Why did I think it would be any different for writing?

    Shared Writing

    I was pleased when I read through this section as it seems to fit quite nicely in what we do when we sit round the front desk and do product analysis all together.
    I started doing this last year as an experiment and am continuing with it this year 

    What I need to include more of when we are doing this is the actual structure of how to write the sentences. Do one example and instead of just allowing them to shout out the words and disjointed parts, get them to say exactly what we are going to write in a more structured way. It will take longer but it will be worth it.

    I need to look more into "think, pair, share" to see if I can use it to any advantage.

    Guided Writing

    My thoughts here, when I am focussing on my Year 11 group, is "chunking" up the analysis and helping small groups / tables of students with each chunk. I can do this while they are working on their drawings. We can look at more analysis examples in smaller groups, talking about them together.
    These chunks are based on the SOLO levels that we follow when working all together on the analysis.

    • Identify and label
    • Describe and list
    • Explain and analyse
    • Evaluate

    Independent Writing

    This is what i want them to do when they apply what we have been doing all together on their own design work. Now i am thinking that the exercise time might be extended into them having more products to analyse like this but on their own as practice.

    I liked what I read about "peer check" as this is what I saw happening in Robyn anderson's classroom when I went to visit last term. Blog post here.

    Just reading this small section at the start of this book has given me loads to think about and do so I will definitely be spending time working my way through this book.

    Friday, May 11, 2018

    Design Development

    Today, I was talking to my Year 8 class about design development. It is a part of the design process that students always have problems with. They do one or two design then do not want to do any more. They say they "like" the one they have done and want that one. They are scared of doing any more that they might not like. They are basically scared of failing. Students always want everything on their design sheets to be "perfect". I showed them some of the my design development example sheets that I have done for my senior classes and explain there is always designs you really like, some ok ones and lots you think are terrible. This is normal.

    Image result for football trainingWe then moved on to how the students take on their sports training.

    • They do skills training to get better at the main game
    • They don't go out there and immediately think they should be great at it without giving it time and effort.
    • They listen to advice about how to improve and do those things.
    • They practice ... again and again and again.
    • They don't think that time spent on these skills and training as wasted time.
    • When they fail, they try again till they get better.

    I then drew a quick concept design on the board and said we were going to treat that design like me going out on the rugby field with a ball.
    • I will be hopeless, I can't kick straight, throw very well or run very far.
    • I will need training, skills, practice and someone to show me how to improve.
    This first design idea needs training too...
    • It needs to improve
    • It needs them to tell it how to improve - they are it's trainer
    • It needs to practice and get better slowly
    • It needs to repeat in order to improve
    The students have been learning how to use TinkerCad to design stands for mobile phones that can be 3D printed. I want them to develop the design they have done on Tinkercad and do changes and improvements. Screen shots need to be taken while they do this to record the changes made and these screen shots put onto a Google slide presentation.

    This is my example ... I started with a very basic idea which was a block with a slot in it - it needed serious training!!!
    The last slide here shows an addition from Thingiverse. The students know about this website so I wanted to show that they could use things from there as long as they combine it with ideas and builds of their own and not just use something straight from there.

    Here are two examples from today, which shows how the students are starting to change little elements of their design at a time and see what the effects are. (I have made copies of the students work so I can remove the names)

    Thursday, May 10, 2018

    STEAM Education Summit 2018

    I went with members of the Technology, Maths and Science departments to the Conferenz STEAM Education Summit at the Crown plaza in Auckland over the last two days.
    Link to the summit information here.

    Link to my notes here - these are as I wrote them at the time with no editing.

    Link to folder of photos taken of the presentations here.

    Thursday, May 3, 2018

    CoL Meeting Week 1 Term 2

    Language in Abundance
    Dr Jannie van Hees

    Language is the elevated tool that humans use to make meaning of life.
    Language is used in a combination of spoken and print.
    Do we just get students to talk? Effective dialogue is important but it is much more than that.
    Print and the construction of words in print, gives students the chance to have contact with much more complex language structures.

    Teachers have to create the opportunities to tighten the ability to learn. Are we ensuring the learning potential is there in a heightened way?
    The students need to do this too as well as the teachers.

    Get the balance right about what the students know and feeding them new stuff.

    Flourishing learning potential

    1 - Optimising learning and interactional conditions.
    2 - Elaborative style pedagogical responses.
    3 - Scaffolding learners to become effective conversationalists.
    4 - Planning Preparing Providing language acquisition potential.

    Peer sharing with a framework of talk.
    Think about what is going on and share with another person what you know.

    The learner has to take responsibility too - it is not a one way street.
    Can students take responsibility for each others learning and not just the teacher. Can they contribute to each other not just for the teacher.

    Elasticity of the brain - ability to look at things from different angles.

    60 / 40 % of gifting to extracting information
    Work in the space that is just beyond their known.
    Notice and focus - catch what you can.
    Try and get a transcript of videos that the students watch as they tend to miss a lot of the vocabulary and grammar and ideas if they just listen.
    Multi-model / foregrounding the text by providing the transcripts.

    Inquiry; -metrics for on-trackness
    Dr Aaron Wilson
    collecting or recording information and reflections on your changed practices, and adaptations you are making along the way, and the importance of having checkpoints where you do formative assessments and collect student voice to see if things seem to be getting the kinds of outcomes you’re aiming for.

    Get the students to help record the effects of the teaching changes. Student voice etc.

    Make the recording of changes regular so you can track what is happening and if changes are happening. This small times between can make it easier to know that it is the changes to your teaching that is making the change and not all the other factors that affect the students.

    Clearly show an audience what you did differently so they can judge the effect it has had and whether what you did made it happen.

    Take note of the little shifts that happen day to day as it happens so you don’t forget anything later for evidence.

    Tuesday, April 17, 2018

    EdTech Summit Auckland 2018 - Extra Stuff

    Demo slam

    Slam 1
    You tube - camera icon has plus button. You can live stream from there or record. 

    Slam 2
    Replace the edit bit of a doc


    Slam 3
    Bitsbox - coding for kids

    Slam 4
    Making a map of results on a spreadsheet. 
    Puts it on a map. 

    Slam 5
    Assessment means to sit beside. 
    Check mark - chrome extension 

    Ignite Sessions

    Dorothy Burt
    Tomorrow’s schools. Changes coming. Pivot task force report from 30 years ago sounds kind of familiar now. 
    The heArt of the matter. 1950’s
    Innovative teachers of the time. 
    Elwyn S Richardson
    Where has the creation gone? It is in the curriculum but planning needs to happen for it to happen in the classroom. 
    Kids want to create and do stuff. 
    Plan for opportunities to be creative. 
    Will Smith YouTube Channel

    Anthony Speranza
    The power of stories
    Hope - drives us to do something. 
    Collection of where educational change is happening around the world. 
    What makes a good learner?
    Teacher and student answers to that question are very different. 
    What is our impact and how do we know?
    Most Likely to Succeed - movie
    What is happening outside of school that makes it more appealing than what is going on inside school?
    What is seducing about YouTube ?

    If we want our students to take risks then the teachers need to take risks too. The teachers also need to supply the space for the students to take the risks. 

    EdTech Summit Auckland - 2018 - Session 8

    My Space - Within and Beyond the Walls
    James Hopkins

    Teach who is in front of you nor what is behind you.
    Teach the students not the curriculum.

    A learning environment is not defined by a physical space.
    A line has to be drawn for teachers to say "no" after a certain time, but this does not affect when the students actually work.

    How many ways are the student sin your classroom accessing their learning at the moment?
    How are they linked?

    The best piece of tech in the classroom is the teacher!!

    Rewindable learning is good for reminding students what they did when they do not have access to you as the teacher.

    Caves, campfires and watering holes.
    Different areas in the room.

    Finding the commonalities on the ways we like to learn - in small groups then pulling it out for the whole class.

    Plan the spaces in the room from the responses to this.
    Plan the big areas for commonalities then use the edges for the areas that are left.
    The spaces need to change to the requirements of who is there at the time.

    How have you got the content laid out on your site so it is obvious what the priorities are and what you want people to see first?
    The physical space is organised for the students.
    The online space needs to cater for wider than that. 

    EdTech Summit Auckland - 2018 - Session 7

    Driving Change and Agendas of Innovation Forward in your School
    Anthony Speranza

    Link to resources

    Challenges to improved change ?
    Time, lack of devices, lack of passion, parents, mandates, TITWWHADI, technical expertise, rapid change, priorities, lack of support, budgets, communication, equity, research.

    When you hear something that works, it should give you hope but you should not replicate it exactly. Everything is different for different people and situations.

    Know your product, people and process - the three p's
    Understand fully the possibilities of any product you are going to use.
    Connect with other people to help, advise and listen to.
    Use the product yourself and it will improve your confidence in talking to others about it.
    Keep up to date
    Approach the early adopters and get them to try stuff and share it back, then it is not just the same innovators trying to push everything.
    Early majority - mostly want proof and evidence before they make the leap
    Late majority - need more proof and see it done.
    Laggards - don't polish the rocks!!
    People are risk averse and the majority of people will say no at first.
    Early adopters can trial and suggest how it can be made meaningful for the majority.

    Need to invest in building capacity in staff - it doesn't happen by magic.
    How can time be used efficiently?
    Less formal "techie brekkies"
    Build expertise in students - they can assist staff and other students.

    Creating conditions for change - there needs to be an urgency
    Once you have adopted something how do you make it stick?
    How can schools retain the passionate people?
    What mindset is needed?
    What tools are needed?
    What skills are needed?
    Kotter's 8 steps for leading change

    SAMR model - key moments need extra attention for this to happen and not slide backwards.

    Understand your why first, then the how will fall into place.
    Starting with why create your purpose, this will then drive your motivation and so to passion - lack of passion could be that they are not linked to the overall school why.
    It will fall over if you build competency but not passion for the why.

    Contrast Frames

    Google for Education Transformation Center

    The what it "should" be needs to be based on your why. Who decides what it should be?

    EdTech Summit - Auckland - Session 6

    Planning for all Learners - Multimodal Teaching and Design
    Kate Harland and James Hopkins

    Factories churn out things - does education churn out people?
    Education came about because of the need to fill factory jobs - learn a bit  - get assessed - learn a bit more - get assessed on a bit more.
    Are we giving students the chance to not fit in to this system?
    Is education fast food?

    Those most likely to succeed? - documentary
    The more different ways you learn something, the more you will remember it.
    Learners engage in different ways so why do we standardise everything?
    Learning is not constricted by four walls so why only do the teaching there? Also the time? It does not happen between 9 and 3, especially the students who have loads of responsibilities at home. A students best learning time is anytime which is good for them so the learning needs to be accessible at any time.
    This all changes the job of teaching to different parts of the day too.
    On the examples - Google Drawings are used mostly to show the activities. The students choose which activities to engage in from the drawing.
    There is a time limit for the drawing - in terms on lessons / weeks etc - the students do not have to do all of the tasks on the drawing.
    Different ways of learning the content, presented in different ways, outcomes to be created in different ways.
    There is always a create / do connected with all the blocks.

    Example Google Drawing Multimodal  - first attempt - Art Deco

    You curate the content that you want the students to go to - boundaries - zig zag through them as they want.

    EdTech Summit Auckland - 2018 - Session 5

    Data Visualisation and Infographics
    Patrick Green

    Session Resources

    Visual literacy is an important skill so  we can have understanding of all the information that is throw at us on a daily basis.
    Design is a huge component of communication.

    The Google Drawing page is in the centre section.
    Use the zoom tool to zoom over the area you want to work on so you don't have to see all of it all the time.

    Fonts give an immediate feeling and thought when you see them.
    You can use this to your advantage.
    Culture plays into the meaning - it is the person seeing the font that makes the meaning it gives.

    2 fonts
    Use colours that go together - don't just randomly throw colours at the page. Use colours that help you tell the story.
    ColorZilla - chrome extension
    Colour lovers - web page

    Shape - these can make your brain link to things as soon as you see them.
    You can make simple images by combining simple shapes together on Google Drawing. Build your own rather than find something on Google. Makes it more personal.
    FlatIcon.com - vector images
    Noun Project - icons for everything

    You can access MyMaps from drive!

    EdTech Summit Auckland - 2018 - Day 2 Keynote

    Once Upon Our Time
    Lindsay Wesner

    Do we see the technology in the classroom as the enemy?
    Does teaching have a "plug and play" formula?
    Do we just do it a certain way as that is the way we were taught?

    Be brave, try new things, fail. Try high risk things on your classroom. Some things will work.
    If you can't be brave all the time, then pretend.
    Magic happens outside your comfort zone not inside it.

    People need to be honest about how it feels to be outside of their comfort zone.

    Education, technology, passion - the cross over is the sweet spot.

    What is innovation?
    "Innovation is change that unlocks new value"
    Jamie Notter

    If you stand at the point of conflict and choose not to be brave, then you miss out and so do your students.
    What does the climax of your story need to look like? Can you imagine it? The teachers story is linked to the students story.

    How might we leverage this culture of digital documentation?
    How can we engage them in things that they want to document it?

    What would education look like if students are given the chance to tell their stories?

    Social media companies are all getting on board with a "story telling" feature.

    Do we as teachers share our teaching stories outside of our circle of "edu peeps"?
    We are those who shape the narrative of education.
    Positive stories / positive hashtags - what affect would this have on education?

    Which problem would you like to solve?
    How can you do it if you don't allow students access to everything that could help them?

    The real world is not a different context or problem every 50 minutes.
    "but" is your enemy!
    What is your "but" that stands in your way?
    Time - how do we see time? How do we spend time? Give the time needed for the problem, not fit the task to the time.
    Curriculum - "but i have to cover the curriculum" ... always!!  - just because the teacher covered it does not mean that the students learnt it.
    The curriculum is not the problem, our mindset is the problem.
    Fear - this is a real thing that teachers go through for many reasons.

    Our weapons
    "a small group of committed people can change the world"
    "Stories are a communal currency of humanity"
    Tahir Shah

    There are people that watch things happen
    There are people who make things happen
    There are people who go "oh ...what happened?"