This term we have been looking at 'Reduce Reuse Recycle' during our Inquiry time in LS2. To help my learners deepen their understanding and strengthen connections to this, I planned a Reading challenge that would help my learners unpack the topic further. To encourage the deeper thinking I was after I asked,'Is recycling the answer to our landfill problems?'
These learners have had a mix of guided and independent learning opportunities that encouraged them to access the information by reading, watching, listening and discussing. My hidden agenda was to continue to build a dialogic learning environment so I planned follow up tasks that promoted collaboration and learning talk. There was so much rich discussion during our 'create' process, my only regret is that I didn't capture this on film.
The slides below show our Recycling Reading Challenge, and include a few of the follow up activities suggested by Aaron Wilson, Woolf Fisher.
Mia, Zahra, Nazella and Fifita chose to share their learning by creating a short movie with a powerful message that makes you think about what happens inside our landfills if Reduce, Reuse and Recycle are overlooked.
Today I set my learners the task of creating a shared response to the question, 'What can we do about the litter problem in schools?' We used my twist on the ESOL strategy consensus to help us do this. My learners were asked to draw their shapes then add their own response to the question in the portion directly in front of them. Once this was done they used their very creative ways to decide how they would formulate their shared response as my twist was that they were not allowed to speak to each other. I observed ticks appearing to show agreement, a 1/2 mark to show some agreement, question marks to show uncertainty, crosses to show disagreement, circle joined with lines to highlight repetition, hand signals, crossing out, arrows and even signatures to denote agreed and disagreed points. Shared responses were then co-constructed alongside pats on the back, smiles and lots of thumbs up. This was an extremely powerful learning opportunity as it showed first hand why we need to be able to have our Learning Space 2 (LS2) famous learning conversations. During our sharing time I asked for feedback on the task. One usually quiet participant told me it would have been much easier if they were allowed to use our talking frames because it would have helped him know he was using the right words to show he disagreed with some of the opinions in his group. Another student pointed out that they used the summary strategy to identify the important words, then from there, use those words to write their shared opinion. The feedback was fantastic and showed real connections had been made to why talking about our learning is so important.
Earlier this week Kiri and I went to Point England School to observe Matt Goodwin's reading programme in action. It was great to have the opportunity to chat to Matt about his practice and see how another teacher unpacks the learning for his students.
Listing the thinking points alongside the text is a brilliant idea as it really helped scaffold the discussion. When I think about my own practice I have a similar scaffold in place but as I used Google slides my learners need to switch between the text and the prompt, which means they have to hold information in their head from one slide, while processing what is being asked of them on another. I will also be taking away the teacher prompts of 'think about the question, read the question and discuss the question' as I see this as a great way to hook different learners in to the same task. Thanks Matt.
Earlier this week I set my learners a task that involved viewing a YouTube clip that explained in Samoan, the importance of observing the correct level of respect when talking part in Samoan cultural practises. Most of my learners are not able to access the learning through the language at this level but all of my learners were able to read and understand the subtitles. The language used was in places sophisticated, but as we unpacked the content together I knew the learning could be accessed. I then asked them to get into groups or pairs, their choice, and create a DLO that identified the main idea in the text. I'm not sure what I was expecting to be honest but I do know I was not expecting to see learning conversations in actions as they debated the purpose of the author's message. Nor did I expect to see the scaffolds we have used in guided reading lessons suddenly pop up on Chromebook screens. This is exactly what I have been striving towards achieving and it all unfolded in front of me with absolutely no prompting! Why did this happen? I have many assumptions ranging from the fact I have helped my learners make strong connections through explicit teaching to transference of learning was taking place. To clarify my own understanding I asked my learners why they had chosen to use these strategies to help them respond to the task.
Girl 1 + partner: We used the summary strategy because we wanted to see what the main idea was by thinking about what the most important words were. I knew if I could find these words we could write our own summary of what the learning was. Then from that we would be able to see the main idea because it would be somehow linked to the most important words. Girl 2 + partner:Me and my partner had a learning conversation so we could agree or disagree on the information we felt was the most important. We did this by looking at both sides of the message then we thought about what we would think was the most important if it was our culture. Boy 1/2/3: We did the negotiation game because it helps us find the important ideas, then the very important ideas and then the vital ideas. It was good to do this in a group because we could all add different ideas and learn from each other. After we did that we checked our thinking by doing a summary and look Miss, it was kind of the same. This is definitely a woohoo moment for me because I saw that with explicit teaching and by embedding something in your practice, strong connections can and will be made. My learners were adapting and using new knowledge and skills to make sense of the task ahead. This is especially so when they are seen as purposeful tools that can be adapted to fit the learning across the curriculum. 'Transfer of Learning—the application of skills, knowledge, and/or attitudes that were learned in one situation to another learning situation.' (Perkins, 1992). I am most proud of the fact that this occurred with absolutely no prompting from me!
Examples of the scaffolds that supported the deep learning conversations.
I was asked to share and model my inquiry process by creating a DLO that shows what my spiral of inquiry looks like in practise. This will be shared next week as a scaffold to help our teacher strengthen their own connections to the inquiry process. This was a great opportunity for me to see exactly what my inquiry looked like through other's eyes and reflect.
Repetition without boring
Multimodal learning opportunities
Actively listen to learner feedback
Observations of good practise across PBS (LS2, Room 3, LS1 done)
Talk doesn’t flow as readily as I hoped
Most able not engaging
What are my next steps?
Week 5 observation with COL across school teacher (Matt).
Exploring published research
Accessing literacy facilitator
Continue to actively plan for dialogic learning opportunities
Observations of good practise across PBS (Room 1 and Room 5 booked for Week 6)
Feeling inspired after SparkshopAKL 17. Thank you Fiona, Justine and everyone who shared today.
Loved this session lead by Karen Ferguson as it allowed me to strengthen my own connections to SOLO in a very visual way. SOLO maps allow our learners to see the learning. We are all on a different learning curve andthe continuum shows it is ok to start with no knowledge then build on learning as we make deeper connections. Thank you @karen0968 for the excellent resources you shared https://goo.gl/cnTBHC.
I wasn't able to attend this session but I loved these questions! Will definitely be introducing this dialogue to help my learners strengthen their connections to self evaluations. Great idea! Thank you @stuartkellynz.
Had so much fun attempting to create my own digital world withcospaces.io. Was immediately hooked in by the 360 images option in thinglink. Can't wait to use this! Thank you Angela Lee @nzleeangela for sharing.